How does a plant grow up or down?

Have you ever wondered how a plant grows up or down ? This behavior of plant beings is somewhat curious, because here on Earth we have gravity high enough for everything around us, including ourselves, to remain on the earth’s crust, on the ground.

However, the trees, the flowers, the herbs… almost all the plants grow as if they wanted to touch the sky. Why?


Although the roots penetrate the soil looking for moisture and can also ensure a good anchorage, the stems do it in the opposite direction looking for light because thanks to solar energy they can carry out photosynthesis and therefore grow. But how can the plant know where to direct the development of each of its parts? Does the seed contain all that information?

Well, as incredible as it may seem, it is . In fact, you can perform the following experiment at home to prove it:

  1. Take a milk container , and put it horizontally on a table.
  2. Cut one side , making a cut down.
  3. Now, fill it with substrate and place a seed (of a pea, for example) right in the middle of the container, away from the side where you cut, but not at the other end.
  4. Finally, water .

In a few days you will see that its first flakes (the cotyledons) will begin to appear on the side that you have cut, upwards.

Although it is still unknown why exactly this happens, this theory is considered valid: the force of gravity may attract both the liquid cell content and its starch . This could be the equivalent of our inner ear, thanks to which we keep ourselves in balance by being able to distinguish what is above and what is below.

Curious, right?

How does a plant grow up or down?

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