Why do plants grow faster in summer ..
Miracle fruit (Synsepalum dulcificum) is more than just a party trick. Its ability to make sour foods seem sweet is attracting the attention of the food and medical industries aiming to reduce sugar consumption. Much is to be learned about the plant's biology, but Malaysian research into flowering and fruiting at a microscopic level has now provided insights that should help in the commercial production of this crop. The flower takes 100 days to develop from initiation. The flower appears to be insect-pollinated, with mechanisms that prevent self-fertilisation. Fruit ripened 90 days after flowering, but a high percentage of fruit dropped between 40-60 days. These findings point to ways crop yield couldbe improved, be it provision of pollinators or water and fertiliser management at fruiting. Further research is required to indentify the pollinator. Source: [
In most plants, photosynthesis occurs in special cells ..
One way plants can adapt to extreme environmental conditions is through modification of their life cycles. For example, annual desert plants have short life cycles: they complete them during the periods when water is available, and are dormant (as seeds) during dry periods. Deciduous trees of the temperate zone shed their leaves before the winter so that sensitive leaf tissue is not damaged by cold temperatures. During less predictable stressful events (e.g., a summer of significant but erratic rainfall) the growth habits of some species may confer a degree of tolerance to these conditions. For example, plants that can grow and flower over an extended period (indeterminate growth) are often more tolerant to erratic environmental extremes than plants that develop preset numbers of leaves and flower over only very short periods (determinate growth).
I have koi in outside fish ponds. At times during the long summer days there is an occurrence called an algae bloom where the water in the pond becomes filled with very small suspended algae. During the day there is no problem with the respiration of the koi that I have in the pond… but because the algae use up so much available oxygen during the night and do not add any O2 to the water…my koi in the very early morning hours before the sunlight starts photosynthesis of the algae run out of the amount of oxygen they need for respiration and are forced to breathe atmospheric O2 at the surface of the pond! They gasp for O2 out of the water from the atmosphere where there is enough available for them to survive. My point is in water ponds there is a semi closed environment where plants can use up so much oxygen at night that they force the fish to get their oxygen elsewhere. When days become shorter the algae bloom will naturally diminish if I wait it out and do not do massive water changes or resort to killing the floating algae with a chemical plant killer algaecide that will not kill my fish if used in the proper doses. Plants do use O2 at night and do not give off any O2 in darkness!
during the spring and summer storing energy
Equally or more important is that in order to carry out photosynthesis, the plant needs to get carbon dioxide into the leaf, and the source is the air outside of the leaf. Small openings in the leaf (each one a stoma; plural, stomata) allow outside gases into the interior of the leaf. A stoma, however, is a two-way door: water inside of the leaf is free to diffuse to the outside, a process known as . The stomata, like doors, can be opened and closed; but closing the stomata to conserve water means that the carbon dioxide necessary for photosynthesis cannot get in. Thus some plants can access carbon dioxide only during the cooler parts of the day, when transpiration is much slower than at hotter temperatures. When the stomata close, making carbon dioxide unavailable, photosynthesis ceases, yet another reason for slow growth.
Some plants even have bulbs or tubers ..
During winter, there is not enough light or water for photosynthesis. The trees will rest, and live off the food they stored during the summer. They begin to shut down their food-making factories. The green chlorophyll disappears from the leaves. As the bright green fades away, we begin to see yellow and orange colors. Small amounts of these colors have been in the leaves all along. We just can't see them in the summer, because they are covered up by the green chlorophyll.
on more slowly in these trees and plants.
Many desert plants have solved the problem to a degree. A number of them use that quickly capture carbon dioxide, allowing the stomata to be closed more often than in plants not adapted for this. These so-called C4 plants (as opposed to C3 plants without the adaptation) also do much better in strong light and hot temperatures. C3 plants under such conditions tend to burn more carbohydrates than they manufacture. Many warm-climate grasses and such things as four-wing saltbush are C4 plants. Cacti and many succulents (such as the century plants, or agaves) utilize a different physiological strategy call photosynthesis. The stomata generally are opened at night, when temperatures tend to be cooler and relative humidity higher, and the carbon dioxide stored in the form of an acid; during the day, the stomata are closed and photosynthesis uses the stored carbon dioxide. CAM plants also can go into a slowed mode for extended periods of time during particularly hot, dry periods by closing the stomata and utilizing carbon dioxide from cellular respiration to manufacture food and burning food to supply energy for respiration. This makes some sense if you know that plants, like animals, produce carbon dioxide as a waste product when breaking down food stuffs to produce usable energy. Of course, energy is lost at each such cycle and eventually the process runs down.