Plants

  1. Pteris vittata ferns
    Environment

    How one fern hoards toxic arsenic in its fronds and doesn’t die

    To survive high levels of arsenic, a fern sequesters the heavy metal in its shoots with the help of three proteins.

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  2. uprooted plant
    Plants

    Some plants use hairy roots and acid to access nutrients in rock

    Shrubs in mountainous areas of Brazil have specialized roots that secrete chemicals to extract phosphorus from rock.

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  3. pollen
    Health & Medicine

    How allergens in pollen help plants do more than make you sneeze

    A plant’s view of what humans call allergens in pollen grains involves a lot of crucial biology. And sex.

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  4. fox snout pouch
    Archaeology

    An ancient pouch reveals the hallucinogen stash of an Andes shaman

    South American shamans in the Andes Mountains carried mind-altering ingredients 1,000 years ago, a study finds.

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  5. Alaska landscape
    Climate

    Climate change made the Arctic greener. Now parts of it are turning brown.

    Arctic browning could have far-reaching consequences for people and wildlife, affecting habitat and atmospheric carbon uptake as well as increasing wildfire risk.

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  6. Silverleaf whiteflies
    Plants

    A major crop pest can make tomato plants lie to their neighbors

    Insects called silverleaf whiteflies exploit tomatoes’ ability to detect damage caused to nearby plants.

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  7. Astronomy

    Readers have questions about Ultima Thule, thirsty plants and vitamin D

    Readers had comments and questions about Ultima Thule, photosynthesis and more.

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  8. joshua tree
    Plants

    Shutdown aside, Joshua trees live an odd life

    Growing only in the U.S. Southwest, wild Joshua trees evolved a rare, fussy pollination scheme.

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  9. 3-D visualization chloroplasts fighting microbes
    Plants

    How light-farming chloroplasts morph into defensive warriors

    Researchers now know which protein triggers light-harvesting plant chloroplasts to turn into cell defenders when a pathogen attacks.

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  10. tobacco farmer
    Agriculture

    A new way to genetically tweak photosynthesis boosts plant growth

    A new chemical road map for a process called photorespiration in plant cells could reduce energy waste to increase plant productivity.

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  11. conifer fossil
    Paleontology

    More plants survived the world’s greatest mass extinction than thought

    Fossil plants from Jordan reveal more plant lineages that made it through the Great Dying roughly 252 million years ago.

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  12. South American maize varieties
    Archaeology

    Corn domestication took some unexpected twists and turns

    A DNA study challenges the idea people fully tamed maize in Mexico before the plant spread.

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