Category: News

Plant Personality


For mil­len­nia man­kind has used anim­als as pre­dict­ors of human char­ac­ter­ist­ics and futur­istic pos­sib­il­it­ies – e.g. the zodi­acal signs of astro­logy that are so pop­u­lar in news­pa­pers and the dif­fer­ent anim­als and their char­ac­ter­ist­ics that denote one’s birth year in Chinese horo­sco­po­logy. But why should anim­als have it all their own way? They shouldn’t, and to redress the bal­ance – albeit turn­ing it on its head a little – there’s a ‘fun’ test you can try at home (or in the office when the boss isn’t looking…).

Cyanobacteria responding well to warming in Roman Bath.

Thinking outside the box?

How well plants – and plant-like organ­isms – will func­tion with fore­cast elev­ated levels of atmo­spheric CO2 – and the attend­ant increases in tem­per­at­ure asso­ci­ated with cli­mate change/global warm­ing – is a legit­im­ate topic of con­cern and sub­ject for research invest­ment. And, given the import­ance of mar­ine phyto­plank­ton organ­isms to global pro­ductiv­ity, under­stand­ing how those phyto­plank­ters might be impacted by increased CO2 con­cen­tra­tions is of para­mount importance.