Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Interesting plants

  1. May 1, 2008 #1
    Come to know about any amazing plants(which do or have anything amazing) share it here!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 1, 2008 #2
    Everything that smells great and is beautiful is not always good!

    Pitcher Plants

    Imagine a beautiful plant that lures insects to their death by a sweet smell. And to top it off, the pitcher plant then proceeds to eat its victim!(That's the whole point of catching it!)

    It has a pitcher-like shape that features a deep cavity filled with liquid.The sides of the pitcher are slippery and are grooved in such a way so as to ensure that the insects cannot climb out!Insects are attracted visually or by odour!( Sometimes the pitcher plants multi-task too!)Once the insect falls into the pitcher like body,that's the last thing it would have ever do.The small bodies of liquid contained within the pitcher traps, do three things to the insect:-

    1)Trap it
    2)Drown it
    3)Dissolve it

    (It's okay, put that hand-kerchief away, even I felt sad at first)

    This may occur by bac(the bacteria being washed by rainfall) or by the enzymes of the plant itself.The insect then becomes a soup of amino, phosphorus,peptides, and other minerals.(Okay, okay, it doesn't sound tasty).This soup is what the pitcher absorbs for its food and nutrition.
    Like all insectivorous plants, they occur in locations where the soil is too poor in minerals and highly acidic.Most other plants could not survive in such soil conditions but the pitcher plant does because it gets its nutrition from outside sources(C,mon I want to say poor little insects in a decent way).
     
  4. May 2, 2008 #3

    jim mcnamara

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    oddball #1:

    There is a Welwitschia mirabilis Hook.f. "grove", if those things can form a grove, East of Swakopmund Namibia that have never reproduced since they were found.. Needless to say there are lots of explanations of how they got there to start with. :smile:
    It is fairly easy to verify the no reproduction thing - they make "cone" fruits that hang around for long time. And no, it isn't an Edgar Allen Poe graveside flowers kind of mystery where you have to invoke parties unseen who come in and swoop up the "cones".

    Here is one possible explanation and pictures:
    http://caliban.mpiz-koeln.mpg.de/~stueber/wanke/welwitchia/index.html

    Of course, the best explanation is that aliens planted them there - just ask Erik Von Donniken :smile: IF you ever get a chance to see one you'd think it came from Mars anyway.


    oddball #2 Aldrovanda vesiculosa L. the waterwheel plant. It is aquatic, captures small swimmers like Daphnia and then digests them. It is my fave 'carnivorous' plant.
    http://www.sarracenia.com/faq/faq5045.html
     
  5. May 2, 2008 #4
    Waterwheel plant- certainly amazing!

    Thanks for the information, Jim mcnamara!

    I liked the waterwheel plant the best because:-

    1)The name!The name is really fitting as its traps are arranged in whorls around a central, free floating stem.

    2)It is a rarity as it is one of those few plants which show rapid plant movement.

    This plant has the most wonderful mechanisms I have ever seen!
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: Interesting plants
  1. Ancestor of plant? (Replies: 3)

  2. Plant stomota (Replies: 2)

  3. Respiration in plants (Replies: 1)

Loading...