Recently researcher made another surprising discovery. A group of scientists from the John Innes Centre and University of East Anglia,
UK asked themselves why rose petals have rounded ends while their leaves are more pointed and they noticed something unusual.
Their study revealed that the shape of petals is controlled by a hidden map located within the plant's growing buds.
Leaves and petals perform different functions related to their shape.
Leaves acquire sugars for a plant via photosynthesis, which can then be transported
throughout the plant. Petals develop later in the life cycle and help attract pollinators.
In earlier work, this team had discovered that leaves in the plant Arabidopsis contain a hidden map that orients growth in a pattern that converges
towards the tip of the bud, giving leaves their characteristic pointed tips.
In the new study, the researchers discover that Arabidopsis petals contain a similar, hidden map that orients growth in the flower's bud.
However, the pattern of growth is different to that in leaves -- in the petal growth is oriented towards the edge giving a more rounded shape --
accounting for the different shapes of leaves and petals. The researchers discovered that molecules called PIN proteins are involved in this
oriented growth, which are located towards the ends of each cell.
"The discovery of these hidden polarity maps was a real surprise and provides a simple explanation for how different shapes can be generated,"
said Professor Enrico Coen, senior author of the study.
Can we imagine a world without flowers? Flowers are beautiful, offering us delight in their colour, fragrance and form, as well as their medicinal benefits.
Flowers also speak to us in the language of the plant form itself, as cultural symbols in different societies, and at the highest levels of inspiration.
In this beautiful and original book, renowned thinker and geometrist Keith Critchlow has chosen to focus on an aspect of flowers that has received perhaps the
least attention. This is the flower as teacher of symmetry and geometry (the 'eternal verities', as Plato called them).
In this sense, he says, flowers can be treated as sources of remembering -- a way of recalling our own wholeness, as well as
awakening our inner power of recognition and consciousness.
What is evident in the geometry of the face of a flower can remind us of the geometry that underlies all existence.
Working from his own flower photographs and with every geometric pattern hand-drawn, the author reviews the role of flowers within the perspective
of our relationship with the natural world. His illuminating study is an attempt to re-engage the human spirit in its intimate relation with all nature.
The team of researchers confirmed their ideas by using computer simulations to test which maps could predict the correct petal shape.
They then confirmed experimentally that PIN proteins located to the right sites to be involved in oriented growth, and identified that another protein, called JAGGED,
is involved in promoting growth towards the edge of petals and in establishing the hidden map that determines petal growth and shape.
There is a hidden map inside flowers...
Unlike animal cells, plant cells are unable to move and migrate to form structures of a particular shape, and so these findings help to explain how plants
create differently shaped organs -- by controlling rates and orientations of cell growth.
From an evolutionary perspective, this system creates the flexibility needed for plant organs to adapt to their environment and to develop different
Amazing Alien Landscape On Earth - Dallol Volcano
If you want to experience an alien landscape it is not necessary to travel to another planet.
In fact, there are places on Earth where the landscape is truly bizarre, almost extraterrestrial many would say.
Looking at this amazing scenery, one can easily ask - Are we still on Earth?
Dangerous Fast and Furious - Birth Of Africa's New Ocean
The only places where mid-ocean ridges appear above sea level are Ethiopia and Iceland.
Two new studies into the so-called “plumbing systems” that lie under volcanoes could bring scientists closer to predicting
large eruptions and reveal new information about where magma is stored and how it moves through the geological plumbing network.
Extreme Life In Tough Environment Of Hot Earth Without Oxygen
Once upon a time, Earth was still a hot, violent place at this time, with volcanic activity dominating the early Earth. The sky was cloudy and grey,
keeping the heat in despite the sun being weaker than today.
The water temperature of the oceans was much higher at 40-50 degrees (the temperature of a hot bath) and circulating currents were very strong.
Antarctica's Mysterious Lake Untersee And Its Otherworldly Ecosystem
A research team has now returned to Lake Untersee to begin the first real studies of this incredible environment.
This new high-quality image details the conical stromatolites that have formed on top of a boulder at a depth of about 20 meters, other
cones can be seen populating the sloping bottom...
Amazing Giant Underground City Created By Ants Discovered
It took scientists weeks to uncover the secret megapolis created by these super-organisms.
Ants have inhabited our planet for millions of years, and yet no living creature seems more alien to us, but now we are slowly beginning to understand their complex nature.
These incredible images, reveal something that at first look appears to have been constructed by an architect.