June 14, 2024

An internal thermometer determines when a plant’s seeds germinate

The seeds of the plant are fantastic structures. Some are barely visible to the naked eye, and others are the size of soccer balls. Some can fly, and some have to be eaten in order to spread. If the seeds are kept cool, dark, and dry, they will often remain viable for germination for years. This is ensured by growth-inhibiting phytohormones, which control the timing of germination. This is important because the survival of the young plant depends on it. If it gets too cold, it dies. If there is a lack of nutrients, it fades away. A Swiss team led by scientists from the University of Geneva has identified a seed’s internal thermometer, which can delay or even prevent germination when temperatures are too high for potential seedlings. Report it In the journal Nature Communications..