rainforest

rainforestA forest is an area on a land which is occupied by the small and large trees. The forests are categorized by the amount of rainfall and temperature. The forest that receives a lot of rainfall throughout the year with warm temperatures is called rainforest.

The rainforests receive about 250 to 450 cm of rainfall annually. These forests are usually warm with a temperature above 90 F (32 C). Rainforests are sometimes confused with jungles; both are different from each other. A rainforest has tall trees that cover the top of a forest and blocks most of the sunshine. Whereas, a jungle is not a restricted region; it may have small trees, larger trees, open grassy grounds.

Layers of Rainforest

layers-of-rainforestThe organisms living in the rainforest have adapted themselves to live in a particular layer of the forest. Rainforests have 4 layers that are occupied with different plants and animals.

  • Emergent Layer: Emergent layer has the longest trees than all the layers. These trees may reach a height of 55 meters. However, the number the trees in this layer is less than the canopy layer. This layer is mostly inhabited by monkeys, eagles, and bats.
  • Canopy Layer: The majority of the longest trees are occupied by this layers except for few trees that are in emergent layer. The trees in this layer have a height of 35 to 45 meters. Furthermore, this layers takes up about 50% of all the plant species that are found in the rainforest.
  • Understory Layer: Understory layer occupies the mid-span between the canopy layer and floor of the rainforest. This layer has a large number of insects and plants have large leaves. The other animals that are found in this layer are jaguars, leopards, lizards, snacks, and many more. Most of the sunlight falls upon the canopy layer. As a result, the understory layer only receives about 5% of sunlight.
  • Forest Floor: Forest floor is the ground layer of the rainforest. It receives the least sunlight (nearly 2%) than all the layers. This layer has the majority of those plants that can survive in low light. All the dead plants and their remaining fall in this layer and decay quickly. The decayed biomaterial further furnishes the land with the necessary minerals and allows other plants to get their necessary diet.

Types of Rainforest

rainforest-inside
Inside a rainforest

The rainforest is divided into the two types due to their presence in different temperature regions. These two types are tropical rainforests and temperate rainforests.

Tropical Rainforests

Tropical rainforests are found in the warm region of the earth near the equator. These forests have a wet climate. They receive more than 170 cm of rainfall annually, but some tropical rainforest may receive about 1000 cm of rainfall. The tropical rainforests cover a large area of the earth. Some of the countries where tropical rainforests exist are Philippines, Sri Lanka, South America, Indonesia, Australia, and Malaysia.

Temperate rainforests

Temperate rainforests are found where the temperatures are mild throughout the year. So, they can withstand cold temperatures. These forests exist only in few regions of the earth. Some of the countries where these forests are found are North America, Alaska, Scotland, Ireland, and Norway.

Importance of Rainforest

region-of-amazon-rainforest
Aerial view of a region of Amazon rainforest

Rainforest covers a very large area of the earth and gives it the green color. The net oxygen produced by the rainforest during daytime is negligible because they take about the same amount of oxygen in the night. However, Rainforest like Amazon plays a vital role in the production of oxygen indirectly. The decay of dead plants produces rich minerals which are washed in the ocean when it is raining. These minerals are food for the small sea creature like plankton. Planktons are producers of the majority of the oxygen on earth. Other than this, rainforests have effects on the formation of the clouds and supplies humans with a great number of herbs for medicines and wood.

Deforestation

destroyed-forest
Destroyed region of a rainforest

The area covered by the rainforests on the earth is shrinking day by day. The main cause behind the shrinkage of forests is human activities. Humans have been destroying forests for clearance of the land for their own use. This destruction of forests has accelerated in the past few decades due to the increase in human population. As a result, the environment is badly affected. It is found that 80% of the animals and plants on earth are living in the forests. Deforestation has abandoned habitats of millions of species and caused many species to go extinct. Many species are declared as endangered; if certain actions are not taken, these species may go extinct.

Another major effect that is caused by deforestation is climate change. Plants in the forests absorb greenhouse gases which protect against global warming. If somehow these forests disappear from the earth the water cycle will disturb and rate of global warming will increase dramatically. Actually, humans are not only destroying the life of animals and plants, but they are also hitting axe on their own feet. Because climate change is also disturbing our own lives.

Facts

  • Amazon is the largest rainforest on the earth. It receives about half of the rainfall that happens all around the world.
  • Rainforests are so dense that, it takes about 10 minutes for a raindrop to fall from the canopy layer to floor.
  • South African rainforests have 8000 species of plants that grow only there.

herbs

What are Herbs?

We use many plants in our everyday life, which are vegetables, fruits, and herbs. You may be very familiar with vegetable and fruits, but herbs may be less familiar to you. Herbs are usually confused with vegetables and spices. But, herbs are different from those in their properties and usage. Herbs are usually leafy green part or flowers of a plant. They may be used fresh or in dried form depending on its use.

Uses of Herbs

herb usageHerbs have been used by humans from very long time ago. People have been using herbs for flavoring, medicines, and cosmetics. Over the time, the knowledge of humans have increased about the herbs, and new herbs were discovered along with their benefits. Herbs are not only used by humans, but many animals also know the medicinal properties of herbs and use them to cure themselves. Let’s discuss some uses of herbs.

  • Flavoring and Smelling – Herbs are used in cooking by people in their everyday life to give the flavor and good smell to the food. Some herbs used in cooking are mint, cloves, saffron, parsley, and rosemary.
  • Medicine – when people started to recognize the health benefits of herbs, they used them to cure illness. The medicines were prepared and sold from more than one kind of herbs to cure a range of diseases. For example, extracts of kava were used to relieve the depression. Medicinal herbs should be used with caution. If these herbs used in high quantity, they can be very toxic. Some famous medicinal herbs are aloe, cinnamon, lavender, and mint.

Popular Herbs

Here are some of the popular used around the world:

  • Chamomile

    chamomileChamomile is herb is famously known for its calming effect. When this herb is taken, it relieves the brain and helps in sleeping. The main benefit of this herb over the pharmaceutical drugs for sleeping is that it is not habit-forming, that means when a person feels fit again he can safely stop its use without any problem.

  • Garlic

    garlicGarlic is a well-known herb and is used regularly in the kitchen around the world. It has many health benefits if used regularly. Garlic helps against the cold, sinus congestion, and diarrhea. If you want to use it as a cure then take 1 to 2 cloves of garlic daily.

  • Ginger

    gingerGinger is another famous herb that is also used in the kitchen regularly. There are many health benefits of ginger including easing upset stomach, vomiting, cold, flu and nausea. You can use ginger for a cure by taking it with hot water. For this, take a half teaspoon of dried ginger and put it in the hot cup of water. You can drink 1 to 2 cups each day.

To learn more about different herbs and their use for living a healthy life, check out the page: https://www.prevention.com/life/a20438272/25-healing-herbs-you-can-use-every-day/

Facts

  • Saffron is a very expensive herb, it is also deadly if a dose of about 10 grams is taken.
  • The scent of black licorice attracts the attention of women.
  • Ancient people believed that there are some herbs that have magical effects on humans. These effects were making a human strong, crazy, intelligent, and fall in love. Of course, that is not true and people at that time didn’t know about herbs that we know today.
Plants are the living things that grow from tiny seeds or spores to mighty trees. They start their life as a weak creature that thrives on ground and water to grow. The starting point of their life is due to a process called germination. Germination allows the seeds – and also spores – to sprout and become a seedling (very young plant). Parts of a Seed Before discussing the process of germination, it is important to know about the parts of seeds. There are 3 main parts of the seed, which are: 1. Seed Coat – The first things you can see on a seed is its coat – also called seed coat. It is usually a hard outer layer that protects the seed from damage. Also, many kinds of seeds have a soft seed coat that can easily be damaged by pressing them with hands. 2. Embryo – The embryo is the actual part of a seed that grows from the cells that it contains to become a plant. It has 4 main parts, which are epicotyl, hypocotyl, radicle, and cotyledons. 3. Endosperm – The endosperm is like a food storage for the seed. It usually surrounds the embryo of the seed, and it provides all the necessary food (starch and protein) until the seed germinates to a seedling. Conditions for Germination Seeds depend on the environmental conditions for germination. Some seeds successfully germinate, while others don’t. Germination needs a right condition to sprout the seeds. The most important environmental conditions that need to be at the right level are water, temperature, oxygen, and light or darkness. Let’s discuss each of these environmental conditions. • Water – The germination process highly depends on the amount of water present in the soil. Because seed coat is usually dry, it needs to be moistened by water to break its coating. Furthermore, when the water is absorbed in the seed, it activates the certain enzymes. These enzymes break down the stored food and convert it into useful chemicals that supply energy to the embryo. • Temperature – Each kind of seed needs a different range of temperatures to germinate. Some seeds germinate in cold temperatures, while others require hot temperatures for germination. The seeds usually don’t germinate if the temperature is not favorable. • Oxygen – seeds use oxygen during metabolism when germinating. Majority of the seeds are buried in the soil. Seed usually take oxygen from the spaces in the soil until they grow their leaves for photosynthesis. If a seed is buried at a great depth, then it is difficult for the seed to get oxygen. • Light or darkness – It is not an important factor to consider. Because the majority of the seeds have no any effect of light or darkness. But, some seeds have the impact of light. The light or darkness usually trigger the germination process for these seeds. Process of Germination Germination of seed follows four main changes that are occurred in steps. These steps are imbibition, respiration, Mobilization of food reserves, and development of the embryo into a seedling. Let’s discuss each of these steps in detail. 1. Imbibition – This is the first step that starts with the absorption of water – also called imbibition. As the seed absorbs the water through small pores in its seed coat, it rehydrates and swells. The swelling of the seeds forces the seed coat to break, which allows the radicle (first root) to come out and absorb nutrients from the soil. 2. Respiration – When water enters into seed, it starts the metabolic activities in the embryo. The oxygen is absorbed by the seed from the soil for generating energy. Oxygen provides the necessary energy to the seed until it grows leaves and starts photosynthesis. 3. Mobilization of Food Reserves – During germination, metabolism takes place. The seed needs food for digestion. The food of the seed is usually stored in the endosperm. The food is mobilized from the endosperm to the embryo. The outer layer of the endosperm secretes the special enzymes that are used for digestion. 4. Development of Embryo into Seedling – The transportation and digestion of food cause the cells of the embryo to develop and divide. The embryo grows until it forms into a seedling. The seedling has every necessary part to start photosynthesis and further grow into the mature plant. Rate of Germination When the seeds are planted in an agricultural area or garden – not every seed in germinated. To measure how many seeds have been germinated from total seeds, it is called germination rate. Germination rate is usually in percentage, which describes how many seeds have been germinated in a given amount of time. For example, 100 seeds are planted in a garden and 65 seeds have been able to germinate. Then, the rate of germination will be 65%. Facts • The seeds of proteas have the unusual ability. They start to germinate after they are exposed to smoke. This ability is definitely evolved in them for surviving in fire-catching forests. • Coco-de-Mer is a seed that has a weight of around 30 kg. It is considered as largest seed on the earth. • Not every plant grows from the seeds. Many plants grow from the spores of their parent plant. Spores are the remaining of a plant after it dies, or they may be the parts of a plant.

Plants are the living things that grow from tiny seeds or spores to mighty trees. They start their life as a weak creature that thrives on ground and water to grow. The starting point of their life is due to a process called germination. Germination allows the seeds – and also spores – to sprout and become a seedling (very young plant). Parts of a Seed Before discussing the process of germination, it is important to know about the parts of seeds. There are 3 main parts of the seed, which are: 1. Seed Coat – The first things you can see on a seed is its coat – also called seed coat. It is usually a hard outer layer that protects the seed from damage. Also, many kinds of seeds have a soft seed coat that can easily be damaged by pressing them with hands. 2. Embryo – The embryo is the actual part of a seed that grows from the cells that it contains to become a plant. It has 4 main parts, which are epicotyl, hypocotyl, radicle, and cotyledons. 3. Endosperm – The endosperm is like a food storage for the seed. It usually surrounds the embryo of the seed, and it provides all the necessary food (starch and protein) until the seed germinates to a seedling. Conditions for Germination Seeds depend on the environmental conditions for germination. Some seeds successfully germinate, while others don’t. Germination needs a right condition to sprout the seeds. The most important environmental conditions that need to be at the right level are water, temperature, oxygen, and light or darkness. Let’s discuss each of these environmental conditions. • Water – The germination process highly depends on the amount of water present in the soil. Because seed coat is usually dry, it needs to be moistened by water to break its coating. Furthermore, when the water is absorbed in the seed, it activates the certain enzymes. These enzymes break down the stored food and convert it into useful chemicals that supply energy to the embryo. • Temperature – Each kind of seed needs a different range of temperatures to germinate. Some seeds germinate in cold temperatures, while others require hot temperatures for germination. The seeds usually don’t germinate if the temperature is not favorable. • Oxygen – seeds use oxygen during metabolism when germinating. Majority of the seeds are buried in the soil. Seed usually take oxygen from the spaces in the soil until they grow their leaves for photosynthesis. If a seed is buried at a great depth, then it is difficult for the seed to get oxygen. • Light or darkness – It is not an important factor to consider. Because the majority of the seeds have no any effect of light or darkness. But, some seeds have the impact of light. The light or darkness usually trigger the germination process for these seeds. Process of Germination Germination of seed follows four main changes that are occurred in steps. These steps are imbibition, respiration, Mobilization of food reserves, and development of the embryo into a seedling. Let’s discuss each of these steps in detail. 1. Imbibition – This is the first step that starts with the absorption of water – also called imbibition. As the seed absorbs the water through small pores in its seed coat, it rehydrates and swells. The swelling of the seeds forces the seed coat to break, which allows the radicle (first root) to come out and absorb nutrients from the soil. 2. Respiration – When water enters into seed, it starts the metabolic activities in the embryo. The oxygen is absorbed by the seed from the soil for generating energy. Oxygen provides the necessary energy to the seed until it grows leaves and starts photosynthesis. 3. Mobilization of Food Reserves – During germination, metabolism takes place. The seed needs food for digestion. The food of the seed is usually stored in the endosperm. The food is mobilized from the endosperm to the embryo. The outer layer of the endosperm secretes the special enzymes that are used for digestion. 4. Development of Embryo into Seedling – The transportation and digestion of food cause the cells of the embryo to develop and divide. The embryo grows until it forms into a seedling. The seedling has every necessary part to start photosynthesis and further grow into the mature plant. Rate of Germination When the seeds are planted in an agricultural area or garden – not every seed in germinated. To measure how many seeds have been germinated from total seeds, it is called germination rate. Germination rate is usually in percentage, which describes how many seeds have been germinated in a given amount of time. For example, 100 seeds are planted in a garden and 65 seeds have been able to germinate. Then, the rate of germination will be 65%. Facts • The seeds of proteas have the unusual ability. They start to germinate after they are exposed to smoke. This ability is definitely evolved in them for surviving in fire-catching forests. • Coco-de-Mer is a seed that has a weight of around 30 kg. It is considered as largest seed on the earth. • Not every plant grows from the seeds. Many plants grow from the spores of their parent plant. Spores are the remaining of a plant after it dies, or they may be the parts of a plant.Plants are the living things that grow from tiny seeds or spores to mighty trees. They start their life as a weak creature that thrives on ground and water to grow. The starting point of their life is due to a process called germination. Germination allows the seeds – and also spores – to sprout and become a seedling (very young plant).

Parts of a Seed

sunflower-seed
sunflower-seed

Before discussing the process of germination, it is important to know about the parts of seeds. There are 3 main parts of the seed, which are:

  1. Seed Coat – The first things you can see on a seed is its coat – also called seed coat. It is usually a hard outer layer that protects the seed from damage. Also, many kinds of seeds have a soft seed coat that can easily be damaged by pressing them with hands.
  2. Embryo – The embryo is the actual part of a seed that grows from the cells that it contains to become a plant. It has 4 main parts, which are epicotyl, hypocotyl, radicle, and cotyledons.
  3. Endosperm – The endosperm is like a food storage for the seed. It usually surrounds the embryo of the seed, and it provides all the necessary food (starch and protein) until the seed germinates to a seedling.

Conditions for Germination

seedlingsSeeds depend on the environmental conditions for germination. Some seeds successfully germinate, while others don’t. Germination needs a right condition to sprout the seeds. The most important environmental conditions that need to be at the right level are water, temperature, oxygen, and light or darkness. Let’s discuss each of these environmental conditions.

  • Water – The germination process highly depends on the amount of water present in the soil. Because seed coat is usually dry, it needs to be moistened by water to break its coating. Furthermore, when the water is absorbed in the seed, it activates the certain enzymes. These enzymes break down the stored food and convert it into useful chemicals that supply energy to the embryo.
  • Temperature – Each kind of seed needs a different range of temperatures to germinate. Some seeds germinate in cold temperatures, while others require hot temperatures for germination. The seeds usually don’t germinate if the temperature is not favorable.
  • Oxygen – seeds use oxygen during metabolism when germinating. Majority of the seeds are buried in the soil. Seed usually take oxygen from the spaces in the soil until they grow their leaves for photosynthesis. If a seed is buried at a great depth, then it is difficult for the seed to get oxygen.
  • Light or darkness – It is not an important factor to consider. Because the majority of the seeds have no any effect of light or darkness. But, some seeds have the impact of light. The light or darkness usually trigger the germination process for these seeds.

Process of Germination

germination-processGermination of seed follows four main changes that are occurred in steps. These steps are imbibition, respiration, Mobilization of food reserves, and development of the embryo into a seedling. Let’s discuss each of these steps in detail.

  1. Imbibition

    This is the first step that starts with the absorption of water – also called imbibition. As the seed absorbs the water through small pores in its seed coat, it rehydrates and swells. The swelling of the seeds forces the seed coat to break, which allows the radicle (first root) to come out and absorb nutrients from the soil.

  2. Respiration

    When water enters into seed, it starts the metabolic activities in the embryo. The oxygen is absorbed by the seed from the soil for generating energy. Oxygen provides the necessary energy to the seed until it grows leaves and starts

  3. Mobilization of Food Reserves

    During germination, metabolism takes place. The seed needs food for digestion. The food of the seed is usually stored in the endosperm. The food is mobilized from the endosperm to the embryo. The outer layer of the endosperm secretes the special enzymes that are used for digestion.

  4. Development of Embryo into Seedling

    seed-to-seedlingThe transportation and digestion of food cause the cells of the embryo to develop and divide. The embryo grows until it forms into a seedling. The seedling has every necessary part to start photosynthesis and further grow into the mature plant.

Rate of Germination

When the seeds are planted in an agricultural area or garden – not every seed in germinated. To measure how many seeds have been germinated from total seeds, it is called germination rate. Germination rate is usually in percentage, which describes how many seeds have been germinated in a given amount of time. For example, 100 seeds are planted in a garden and 65 seeds have been able to germinate. Then, the rate of germination will be 65%.

Facts

  • The seeds of proteas have the unusual They start to germinate after they are exposed to smoke. This ability is definitely evolved in them for surviving in fire-catching forests.
  • Coco-de-Mer is a seed that has a weight of around 30 kg. It is considered as largest seed on the earth.
  • Not every plant grows from the seeds. Many plants grow from the spores of their parent plant. Spores are the remaining of a plant after it dies, or they may be the parts of a plant.
water-cycle

water-cycleOur earth has abundant water on its surface. This water is in form of oceans, rivers, lakes, and glaciers. But, the only small percentage of water is freshwater that we drink and use. The rest of the water lies in oceans which is very salty. Have you ever thought, how this freshwater reaches us? We get this freshwater in a cyclic process called water cycle.

What is Water Cycle?

The water cycle is a continuous process that happens all the time around the earth. This process is very crucial in delivering the water from oceans to lands, and back again. For example, the water you see in the rivers, lakes, and glaciers is available to us due to the water cycle.

There are various methods through which the water circulates around the earth. Some methods bring the water from land to the atmosphere and form clouds. While other methods bring water back to ground on various places. This way the water is distributed across the whole planet.

How Water Moves to Atmosphere

Water moves to the atmosphere in form of vapors (gaseous state) from all around the earth – leaving behind all the salts and other impurities. There are 3 main methods that can transport water from land to atmosphere.

  1. Evaporation

    evaporationThis is the most important method than other two. This method is responsible for 90% of the water vapors that are produced around the earth. Evaporation happens at the surface of the water – where atmosphere touches it. As the air moves above the surface of the water, it takes away the some of the water with them as vapors. The hot water evaporates quicker than the cold water. Our sun provides heat energy all the time to earth. When sunlight reaches oceans, lakes, and rivers, it raises their temperature and speed-up the evaporation. The major portion of the water in the atmosphere comes from oceans. These oceans cover 71% of the earth’s surface. All the freshwater – that we get – is indirectly taken from oceans.

  2. Sublimation

    This method only works with ice or snow. Sublimation is a process in which the ice is directly converted into vapors (gaseous state) – without moving through the liquid The sublimation process is favored by cold temperature and high wind speed with sunlight.

  3. Transpiration

    It is similar to evaporation. But instead of groundwater, evaporation happens on the leaves of plants. Plants release a lot of water on their leaves – due to some cellular processes. This water is then evaporated into the atmosphere.

How Water Moves Across Land

Now the water has been transported into the atmosphere by various methods. But, how this water come back to the land and moves across it? Let’s discuss them.

  • Precipitation

    raining-cloudsThis is the process in which water vapors that escaped from the land, come back. It happens due to condensation of the water vapors. When vapors rise above the land, they form clouds. Vapors start to condense in the clouds and form the tiny droplets. These tiny droplets attach to each other and form big These big droplets are heavy enough to fall back on the land – which is also called raining. Precipitation is not always in form of rain, but it is also in form of snow, sleet, and hail – depending on the weather of the region.

  • Rivers

    riverRivers play the main role in distributing the water across the land. The precipitation on mountains and melt-down of glaciers gather very large amount of freshwater. This freshwater flows down the high altitude regions towards low altitude region through a path. People usually carry and store the needed water, and rest of the water flows down towards oceans.

  • Water Storage

    glaciersThis is also an important part of the water cycle in which water is stored naturally. The stored fresh water is in form of glaciers, snow caps. This water is stored on top of mountains – where the temperature is low. Precipitation also occurs on these high mountains, but due to low temperature, the water is in solid form (ice). When the temperature of these regions increases – due to weather – we get the liquid water flowing in the rivers.

Importance of Water Cycle

ecosystemSo far, we have discussed the water cycle technically. But it is necessary to discuss its importance in everyday life. All the humans, animals, and plants around the earth have access to fresh water – that’s why we are alive. For example, we humans get the water from rivers, ground, or direct precipitation. All the plants in the jungle need periodic precipitation to stay alive. Animals need ponds or lakes for drinking water. These all the things are possible only due to the natural water cycle.

Effects of Pollution on Water Cycle

pollution-caused-by-power-plant
Power plants are polluting the atmosphere

Today, human-caused activities have caused very adverse effects on the natural water cycle. The most harmful activity that humans are causing is carbon emission – that is a greenhouse gas. Carbon emission cause global warming. As a result, the average temperature of the earth is rising, and glaciers are melting at a higher rate than they are forming. It will cause water shortages in near future. The disturbance in water cycle is so severe that many regions have no precipitation at all – that used to have regular precipitation. While some regions have more than normal precipitation, causing floods.

The second disastrous effect is caused by pollution. Pollution of land, water, and atmosphere increase the toxicity of fresh water. As a result, the health and life of animals, marine, plants, and even humans have damaged severely.

For more information on global warming and pollution go to:

  1. http://science4fun.info/global-warming/
  2. http://science4fun.info/land-pollution/
  3. http://science4fun.info/water-pollution/
  4. http://science4fun.info/air-pollution/

Facts

  • It is estimated that transpiration accounts for 10% of the vapors in the atmosphere.
  • Underground water resources are called aquifers. These aquifers are replenished by water cycle. The water in aquifers can remain there for thousands of years – sometimes millions of years.
  • Clouds may contain water in all three states (solid, liquid, and gas) at the same time.
  • The water that earth got at the time of its formation is the same water that you drink today – even dinosaurs drank that water too.
  • Our earth has only 3% freshwater, from which only 30% is in the liquid state – the rest of the fresh water is in glaciers and ice caps.
photosynthesis

photosynthesis

Every living thing on Earth needs food to survive and live a healthy life. Plants are also living things, so they need food regularly. But instead of waiting for someone to feed them, they produce their own food. They produce their food in a process called ‘Photosynthesis’ and generate oxygen for us.

Plants need three things to make their food which are sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide. These materials are crucial for plants, they get them from nature. Sunlight from the sun and carbon dioxide from the atmosphere are available for free. But, water is available in the ground due to rain, rivers, or human irrigation system. So, getting water is a little bit difficult when rivers are dry and precipitations are very low.

How Plants Absorb the Necessary Ingredients

  • Carbon dioxide is absorbed by leaves of the plants. The leaves of the plants contain small pores called “stomata”. The carbon dioxide is absorbed through these small pores.leaves-of-a-plant
  • Water along with necessary minerals is absorbed by the roots of the plants. These absorb the water from the ground. Water is then sent to different parts of the plants through vessels in its stem.
  • Sunlight is absorbed by chloroplasts in the leaves of plants. Chloroplasts have a green color and those are responsible for the green color of leaves.

Process of Photosynthesis

The photosynthesis process happens in two phases in a plant.

  • 1st Phase: In this phase, the sunlight is absorbed by chloroplasts in the cells of plant’s leaves. The chloroplasts contain a substance called chlorophyll, which stores the energy from sunlight into a chemical called ATP.
  • 2nd Phase: The ATP produced in the first phase is used to produce glucose and oxygen from the water and carbon dioxide. The 2nd phase can happen in the night time because it is not dependent on direct sunlight. This phase is also called Calvin Cycle.calvin-cycle

Photosynthesis in terms of chemistry is a chemical reaction that is activated by light. In this reaction, light and chlorophyll break-up the water into its two constituents; oxygen and hydrogen. The oxygen and hydrogen combine with carbon dioxide to produce glucose, and oxygen is released as a gas in the atmosphere.

photosynthesis-process

The glucose is like a fuel for the plants, it is used to provide energy for the growth of plants. Plants also store some glucose in their leaves, fruits, and roots to use them later.

Importance of Photosynthesis

Photosynthesis process is very necessary for all living things on Earth. It produces oxygen as a byproduct in food preparation. The oxygen is very necessary for all living things in breathing. All the oxygen on Earth has been produced by these plants and some other creatures (some algae and bacteria) since few billion years ago.

growing-plantIt is very difficult to predict the fate of earth without photosynthesis. But it is clear that, if photosynthesis stops suddenly, no more oxygen will be produced. Gradually, the available oxygen will be consumed and every oxygen breathing creature would die. Besides the oxygen, plants are considered as producers of food. All the animals highly depend on the plants for their food, because animals just eat food without producing it. Some animals directly eat plants are called herbivores (e.g. sheep, and cow), and others eat the herbivores are called carnivores (e.g. lion, tiger, and dog). Carnivores are indirectly dependent on the photosynthesis.

Increasing the number of plants, taking a good care of them not only provide oxygen to us, but also provide us with food.

Fun Facts

  • Scientists think that first organism to use photosynthesis were cyanobacteria. They used photosynthesis about 3.5 billion years ago.
  • It is estimated that an adult person consumes about 740 kg of oxygen in a year. This amount of oxygen is produced by about eight trees in a year.

Our planet started to turn green after the evolution of photosynthesis in bacteria and plants.