Did You Know……
- A notch in a tree will remain the same distance from the ground as the tree grows.
- Deciduous trees cope with food shortages during the winter months by removing all the nitrogen and carbon from the leaves before shedding them. The energy is stored in the form of protein in the tips of the stems.
- When a tree is struck by lightning, the liquids inside the trunk and bark turn to gas instantly, leading to high pressure and literally explosion of anything that is between the gas and the open air. Usually, the lightning current runs just underneath the bark, down to ground, and the tree is scarred by a strip of blown-away bark.
- Variegation in plants is caused by the loss of chloroplasts in the leaf, this results in the different colours present within the leaf.
- Chloroplasts process food for plants and without this food making factory it does make the variegated forms weaker than solid coloured plants. Variegation very rarely occurs in nature. Propagating the plant must be by a vegetative method of propagation that preserves both types of tissue in relation to each other.
- The Venus Flytrap definitely lives up to its name and is a “carnivorous plant”. It actually has a sweet nectar on the inside that attracts insects. Hairs on the inside of the leaves trigger it to snap shut when it has its prey. The hairs are so attuned that they have to be touched more than once to know that they have a live creature ready for capture. When the insect touches the hairs it send an electric current through the leaf and causes it to close. Digestive juices go to work on the insect for up to a week. All that remains is a skeleton which is whisked away in the wind. After each meal the plant grows. When the leaves dies it grows new ones.
- Ferns were present in the Mesozoic era, they are even older than dinosaurs. The term “fiddlehead” refers to a young, tightly coiled fern frond because it looks like the scroll of a violin.
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