Recently, Evolutionary biology PhD candidate and science communicator Sally LePage discovered that 10 of 12 water companies in the UK use divining rods. It was picked up by The Guardian amongst other places. Phantom Sense Divining rods, or dowsing objects, do not work. They are no better than chance and Le Page cites the evidence … More Finding water.
The professor that got me into plant biology, taught me plant physiology, and in a many ways helped me develop my technical writing ability is retiring this year. Gary Tallman, PhD is retiring from being the Taul Watanabe endowed Professor of Biology at Willamette University in Salem, OR, but has had a long career in … More Guard Cells Tolerating Heat
Go for the sun. It’s a prime directive for most plants on Earth. Gather enough light to drive carbon dioxide, an atmospheric gas, into sugars to fuel growth. The rest of the needed ingredients to build a plant come from underground and the roots. To build more roots, however, photosynthesis has to happen. Go for … More Reach For The Sun.
A few weeks ago, I wrote about auxin. And how auxin signaling works. As promised in my last post, I’m going to tell the story of identifying the auxin receptor and a recent development in the story. Background. Ascribing a function to genes (a single unit of the multi-gene/genome DNA blueprint of an organism) is … More The Auxin Receptor(s).
Cytokinins: Part 2. Last week, I told the story about how cytokinins as a factor that induced cell division and new shoot formation. The first in the class of molecules was the adenine derivative Kinetin. Kinetin is a synthetic molecule, or the product of rearranging natural ones when DNA sits out for many months. Carlos … More Cytokinins, Part 2.
This post touches on a lot of things. I wasn’t aware of just how many things interlinked in this story. So I hope you enjoy the story of the discovery of cytokinins, and the connections made herein. This year is the 60th anniversary of the discovery of the first cytokinin, kinetin. And this one is … More The Discovery of Cytokinin.
It’s hormone month at The Quiet Branches. It makes a little sense now that I think about it. Love is supposedly in the air with Valentine’s Day and the plants that go dormant for winter will soon be back, engaging their hormone pathways to sprout new growth. In a way, I hope I’m teaching you … More Plant Hormones: Ethylene