This is a secondary blog, inspired by Bengoldacre.posterous.com, where Ben Goldacre "witters on and on and on about things that are too long to post on twitter and not clever enough to post on [his] main blog at www.badscience.net". TALKING PLANTS TOO is a scrapbook of ideas for TALKING PLANTS proper and for other stuff … including direct reproduction of posts I just can't bear to not find again (with URL up front, hopefully sufficient attribution given the low readership of this blog...)
When she was a child, Jill Farrant, a molecular physiologist based at the University of Cape Town, came across an unusual plant. It seemed dead, yet when the rain fell from the sky, it sprung back to life. Her father didn’t believe her.
What Farrant saw was a “resurrection plant”, which can survive with no water for months to years. Seeing how quickly the plants recover is remarkable sight (Watch a timelapse in the video above at 1:30).
Now Farrant hopes to tap these abilities to transform food production. Resurrection plants have many of the same genes in their roots and leaves as seeds, so now she is trying to work out how to switch those genes in wheat, rice and maize crops so that they can survive droughts. See her explain how in the video at the top of the page.
Resurrection plants come back to life within 24 hours - watch the video above to see how (Credit: SPL)
The video above is part of a series calledThe Genius Behind: Themost amazing and sometimes little known technological and scientific breakthroughs of modern times, and the innovative minds behind them.