Asking the right question

Image: Joaquim Alves Gaspar and Tony Wills/Wikimedia Commons.

Image: Joaquim Alves Gaspar and Tony Wills/Wikimedia Commons.

Often answers to the simplest ques­tions are the most insight­ful. Take for instance the per­fectly reas­on­able query, ‘why are there so many kinds of plants?’. This fas­cin­at­ing ques­tion is pondered by Professor Fred Essig (University of South Florida, USA) in his guest blog entry at Biology Online, a site that claims to provide answers to all your bio­logy ques­tions. I won’t give away the answer, but tak­ing a niche-based approach Essig provides a thought­ful response that can be used by all should the same ques­tion come up in your own teach­ing. Cheers, Fred!

[However, one still can’t help won­der­ing if 10,000 spe­cies of grass is too many… espe­cially as they all look the same (or so my stu­dents tell me…) – Ed.]

Nigel Chaffey. ORCID 0000-0002-4231-9082

Nigel is a botanist and full-time academic at Bath Spa University (Bath, near Bristol, UK). As News Editor for the Annals of Botany he contributes the monthly Plant Cuttings column to that august international botanical organ. His main goal is to inform (hopefully, in an educational, and entertaining way...) about plants and plant-people interactions.

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