Advent Day 6 – an audio blog on Poinsettia, caterpillars and acid

Today, it’s podcast release day. And as we’re both far from being fit, this is not a regular fun full episode, it is an irregular fun focused episode. It is about a post you might have read – but did you listen to Joram’s soothing voice read it to you on your way to work? Didn’t think so.

You can also move over to our Podcast section, where you’ll find the whole thing, too.

This article is part of our Christmas Advent’s Calendar.Read more

Advent Calendar Day 5 – Forever green

Winter would be that much sadder without the green that remains on some trees – like our beloved Christmas trees conifers. They resist the peer pressure of other trees that drop their foliage as soon as it gets a little bit colder.… Read more

Advent Day 1 – The First Christmas Tree

While Christmas trees are now ubiquitous and popular, the tradition of erecting a pine or fir in the confines of a home is relatively new. Using evergreens as a reminder of the better, as in warmer, times is an older tradition but it was Martin Luther, the protestant reformer, who is credited with coming up with the first Christmas tree. Whether it is folklore or truth is hard to tell these days, the first documented Christmas tree dates back to 1576 and is displayed in a keystone in Alsace in Germany France.… Read more

Short Chain Hero

It’s grey and rainy days like this November in Berlin that make you very aware of your immune system and how it works, perhaps not always successfully, to fends off all kinds of pathogens. Plants are in a similar situation, their immune response has to constantly be ready to fight off fungi, bacteria or viruses. Recently, researchers gained new understanding of the workings of a key part of the plant’s immune response.… Read more

Adjusting Antennas

Natural light is a challenge for plants. It’s far from constant and it changes not only in intensity but also in quality, shifting between blue-ish and red-ish hues, depending on the time of the day. Here’s a tale of how plants rise to the challenge of change, by fine-tuning their light collectors in response to the light. … Read more

Room for biodiversity

Heading into the future, we have to solve some extremely complex problems. Take agriculture for example: we want to feed an ever increasing population, protect the local environment, reduce carbon emissions and have a sustainable long-term production pipeline.

Today, we’re looking at one of these problems and discussing potential solutions.… Read more

Raindrops keep falling on my leaf 😢

The outside world can be harsh – and I’m not only saying that because I am sitting at home with a cold, looking at the dull grey sky through the window. Too much of any of the elements- wind, rain, cold, heat- can cause us all stress. And they can stress plants, too. Today we’re talking about how plants feel when raindrops keep falling on their leaves…



drip… Read more

Fun-sized ‘plants’

Small things are fun. That’s why they call tiny chocolate bars fun-sized. So we thought we’d look into the plant biology version of those shrunken-down candy bars: the fun-sized class of Mamiellophyceae.… Read more

Gotta grow fast!

In 1884, during the Cotton State Exhibition in the United States, well-meaning presenters handed out small plants to visitors. Those visitors brought the gifts to their backyards where they excitedly planted the aquatic planted in small streams and ponds. Just 16 years later, the plant had become a serious pest in many bodies of water in several federal states. … Read more

The forgotten organelle

Think of a plant organelle. You probably picked the chloroplast, the guy that’s specific to plants. Or maybe the giant vacuole. If you‘re weird, you picked the tiny mitochondria*. Chances are, however, that you forgot about one organelle – the peroxisome.

*We’re both chloroplast people, thus the mito shade.… Read more