Water– the universal life blood for all living things. Water is the common denominator when it comes to survival on this planet. Whether you are a plant, animal, or microscopic organism, obtaining water is surely a top priority in your daily routine. Humans can only survive for 3-4 days without water. Plants also need water to survive, but they have developed incredibly diverse and unique adaptations to stay alive without water. Most plants have large storage compartments within their cells called “vacuoles” that allow them to store excess water to use on a not-so-rainy day. This image is of a desert plant which has received ample water earlier in the day. Also, some desert plants do not open their leaf cells (known as guard cells) during the day because this causes water loss through a process called “evaptranspiration.” The leaves of this plant are covered in tiny hairs as well as a waxy coating to help repel water.
In these photos, I love how the plant causes the water droplets to bead up into perfect little balls. The properties of water are on full display here as you can clearly see that water molecules tend to stick together due to hydrogen bonding and they magnify the tiny hairs of the plant underneath it. Next time you go outside be sure to notice the beautiful and intricate dance shared between water and plants.
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*The writing and photos contained in this blog post are owned by the author, Jay Merrill.