Monday, 25 January 2010

Macro Monday



Oooooh, look at me, actually posting a Macro Monday photo on Monday - just. Will wonders never cease?

So, anyone care to guess what plant is growing this tendril?

This was going be my shortest post ever, but, well, I can't quite help myself. So here are a few tantalising tidbits about tendrils:

  • Tendrils are formed from modified shoots, leaves or auxillary branches.
  • They form following physical touch, turning towards the object touched. This change in growth direction is known as thigmotropism.
  • The touch is sensed by tiny hairs on the surface of the plant.
  • The change in direct of growth is caused by a change in turgor of the plant cells (those on the touch side lose water and become flaccid, while those on the opposite side fill with water and become much firmer).
  • Differential growth also occurs in response to hormones such as auxins. Cells on the side furthest from the touch elongate more than those on the side closest to the touch, causing the tendril to turn towards the touch.
  • And finally, guess who first studied such movements. Oh yes, it is him again, that most prolific and famous of biologists, Charles Darwin himself. He published his monograph On the movements and Habits of Climbing Plants in 1865. I suppose he had to keep himself busy once he had finished On the Origin of Species.
Here endeth the lesson.

And here is a link to Macro Monday.


20 comments:

Johnny Nutcase said...

totally cool shot!

Don't Bug Me! said...

Blimey, Johnny Nutcase, that was a quick comment! Thank you.

Colleen said...

Wow! Just amazing!

Cortes said...

Great shot DBM. My uneducated guess would be a pea or bean plant?

Kiki said...

Brilliant! Stunning beauty!
Kiki~

Kate said...

That is a lovely photo.... whatever it is... :-)

Don't Bug Me! said...

Colleen: Thank you!

Cortes: Nope, not bean or pea. You, of all people should know this, since you have probably eaten at least 50% of the crop produced by this plant.

Kiki: That is what I love about macro photography. You can find beauty in the smallest of places.

Hi Kate! I am sure that if we wait a bit longer, Cortes will tell us what it is.

Cortes said...

Hmmmmmmm...... beer does not grow on plants, so that eliminates one of my choices! Would this be a strawberry?

Cortes said...

NO,NO,NO...... I know! Cucumber!!!

Don't Bug Me! said...

Well done Cortes! I knew you would get it.

Cortes said...

I was in a bit of a pickle, but only for a little while. Whew!

awarewriter said...

I haven't a clue as to the plant but it's a neat shot.

Don't Bug Me! said...

Thanks AW. As Cortes has correctly guessed, it is a cucumber. The produce was pickled and has since been consumed, mostly by Cortes.

Together We Save said...

Very interesting picture!!

Katherine said...

It's a lot like passionfruit, too. Macro shots are fun!

Suldog said...

I thought pickles grew on vinegar trees...?

Just kidding. Cool photo!

Baino said...

You posted on Monday and it's taken me until Saturday to catch up. I still think you have the unfair advantage of being a bloody awesome photographer. Who'd have thought a simple cucumber would begin with such a delicate thing. Lovely.

Don't Bug Me! said...

TWS: Thank you.

Suldog: What, like spaghetti on spaghetti trees?

Baino: At least you did catch up. As for my unfair advantage - well, all's fair in love and photography.

Anya said...

Wow!!!!!!!
AMAZING :-)

Don't Bug Me! said...

Thanks Anya!