Hot Plants Are Cool
The sacred lotus (Nelumbo nucifera) can maintain temperatures of around 30°C even when ambient temperatures drop to freezing (0°C) that's more than human can do.
Warm-blooded, Smarm-blooded, Make Way For Hot Plants!
Do you know someone who thinks they know everything about plants? Well, maybe they do and maybe they don't, but there is a great way to test them...ask them about hot plants. Ask them about organisms that maintain temperatures above ambient temperature, and see if they get a quizzical look and start talking about warm blooded animals. If they do, they don't know everything about plants because those marvelous photosynthetic organisms we share this planet with have quite a few tricks up their sleeves (which of course they don't have, sleeves that is, but you get the idea), and one of those tricks is thermoregulation!
- In The Heat Of The Night at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5fQkeqU3Pw
Use the resources below to answer the following questions:
- What are some of the techniques that flowering plants (angiosperms) use to attract pollinators?
- How does the temperature of male florets compare to the temperature of female florets? Is this pattern consistent with thermogenesis being involved in the pollination process? Why or why not?
- How does Colocasia esculenta prevent self-pollination? Does it surprise you that a plant can be so sophisticated in its behavior? Why or why not?
- If plants are able to thermoregulate, why don't they maintain constant elevated temperatures like warm-blooded animals? Think carefully about the costs and benefits of these behaviors.