articles

Taming a Virus

You’ve all seen the news on CRISPR. The fantastic new technology that seems to get more impressive each day, and which by now seems capable of answering almost any biological question we can ask. But CRISPR technology, and the things we can do with it, is only useful if we can actually get the CRISPR inside the species we want to study. And, as it turns out, there are many species which can’t be transformed- species that we can’t efficiently get CRISPR-encoding sequences into in the first place.… 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

drip

drip… Read more

The Spooookiest Plant Genes

Welcome to Halloween 2019!

Earlier in the week we shared a list of the scariest plants, including some that are dangerous, some that are deadly, and some that just have really cool names and backstories.

Today, we’re talking about our favourite plant genes, proteins and mutants with sufficiently spooooky names.

Let us know in the comments if you think we’ve missed any!… Read more

Our 11 Scariest Plants

Welcome to Halloween Week!

We thought we could stick to the spoooky theme this week, and present our favourite scary plants. Just as a disclaimer – we are well aware of (and a little bit sad about) the fact that some people will hear ‘scary plant’ and immediately thing ‘GMO’. But that’s not at all what this is about.

Instead, we’re focusing on the devious, the dangerous, and the deadly… a well as a couple of plants that just plain old smell like dung.… 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

Cross both ways before you look!

Today, in this CROSSOVER with Vivian from Instagram’s @Fat_plants_only, we’re talking about literal crossing. 

More specifically, we’re diving into the molecular and genetic factors that play a role into directional crossing differences. I.e., why it is sometimes, using one parent species as the dad (pollen or sperm donor) and one as the mum (egg donor) makes a completely different offspring, compared to when we use those same parents, but switch their roles.… Read more