News and Views
Land plants arose earlier than thought—and may have had a bigger impact on the evolution of animals
We have land plants to thank for the oxygen we breathe. And now we have a better idea of when they took to land in the first place. While the oldest known fossils of land plants are 420 million years old, researchers have now determined that pond scum first made landfall almost 100 million years earlier.
The United States’s Corn Belt is making its own weather
The Great Plains of the central United States—the Corn Belt—is home to some mysterious weather: Whereas the rest of the world has warmed, the region’s summer temperatures have dropped as much as a full degree Celsius, and rainfall has increased up to 35%, the largest spike anywhere in the world.
Does GMO corn increase crop yields? 21 years of data confirm it does—and provides substantial health benefits
The analysis of over 6,000 peer-reviewed studies covering 21 years of data found that GMO corn increased yields up to 25 percent and dramatically decreased dangerous food contaminants.
Genetic Literacy Project
Plant Scientist Runs for Congress
Hallie Thompson is running to represent Missouri’s 4th District in Congress because it’s time to bring a fresh, pro-science perspective to our federal government.
Plant Science Today
In Our Time, Rosalind Franklin
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the pioneering scientist Rosalind Franklin (1920 - 1958). During her distinguished career, Franklin carried out ground-breaking research into coal and viruses but she is perhapsbest remembered for her investigations in the field of DNA.
BBC Radio 4 (available worldwide)
Roby Milling has produced a poster-sized gallery of common buds found on trees.
Dr Peter Wilkie: Botanic Garden fighting to save the rainforest from the scorched earth of human activity
Recognised as a major provider of biodiversity expertise, the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE) has been invited this month to join a workshop in Indonesia hosted by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).
'Would you burn the Mona Lisa if it was sent?': Our horror bureaucratic bungle
It’s a bungle that has floored botanists around the globe and embarrassed the Australian government. How did 105 priceless and irreplaceable historical plant specimens, sent here by the French, end up being destroyed by biosecurity officers?
The Sydney Morning Herald's 'Good Weekend' section
What does a pesticide taste like?
The notorious Gilles-Eric Seralini published a paper recently called “The Taste of Pesticides in Wines.” As a part of the study, people were asked to choose a preference between organic and conventional wines. Okay, fine. But then the participants were given glasses of water, some of which were spiked with pesticides at doses purportedly found in bottles of wine. This is bizarre on so many levels.
A Plant Out of Place
Strange World of Fleshy Nettle Fruits (Urticaceae)
Brightly coloured or fleshy fruit are not what you would associate with the nettles. Indeed neither would most botanists who study them in a herbarium where once brightly coloured intricately shaped structures are reduced to congealed dark brown blobs.