General Question

Harp's avatar

What is the mechanism for motion in plants?

Asked by Harp (19174points) June 7th, 2008

Plants don’t have muscles, obviously, but some flowers open in the daylight and close at dusk. What drives these movements?

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12 Answers

dingus108's avatar

dude, I think this can be googled…. ;-P sorry if i sound like a smart alec….

jrpowell's avatar

I would send out a comment to delirium if you don’t get a real answer from here. She lives with someone that knows a lot about plants. But she has been missing for a few days. :-(

Harp's avatar

Thanks, JP

gailcalled's avatar

Check out heliotropism. Some flowers, like morning glories, open only in the morning, some at night and some only once a year; and muscles don’t start the seed sprouting under the soil..the miracle of life, made manifest.

cooksalot's avatar

This may have the answer to what your asking.

Harp's avatar

Great links, thanks all. Checking out some of the terminology lead me to this, which also has good info. Turns out that the opening and closing of flowers is due to phenemena called “epinasty” and “hyponasty”, which you’ve just got to love. “Miracle of lfe” does sound so much better, gail

gailcalled's avatar

I do love “hyponasty.” A good horticultural excuse for a party is to watch for the yearly flower and then invite all your friends over to see the Night-blooming Cereus.

Harp's avatar

Wow, that’s gorgeous!

gailcalled's avatar

I can mail you a leaf if you like, (you just jam it into a pot w. decent dirt) and if you have “world enough and time” to wait. I am still hoping for a bloom after four years.

syz's avatar

@gailcalled Is it as ugly a plant as I remember from my chilhood visits to my grandmother’s house?

(wow, that’s akward phrasing)

gailcalled's avatar

@Syz; yes, tall, gangly and rapid-growing. If you housekeep it by cutting off dead or drying leaves, it is better but no beauty, under any circumstances. And needs bigger and bigger pots, which are, of course, heavier and heavier. I will, I hope, get to see one bloom and then out the whole thing goes.

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