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vines 'see' trees?

Monique Reed monique at mail.bio.tamu.edu
Fri Sep 8 14:00:21 EST 2000


Certain species do just that--the young plants grow away from the
light.  This is especially common in the rainforest, where the
creepers have to head toward something to climb up if they ever want
to get up into the sunlight.  You can see this in time-lapse
photography in the video series _The Private Life of Plants_.

Other vines and tendrils just sort of flail around until they find
something to climb up.  It helps that many fruit-eating birds usually
excrete the seeds while they're perched, so the young sprouts start
off near something to use for support.

M. Reed.

Dan Jacobson wrote:
> 
> It seems to me that vines have some way of seeking out a tree to climb up.
> My guess is that instead of the seemingly usual 'grow toward a light
> source' programming of most plants, vines might add "and grow toward tall
> green/dark things near you."
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