Do the plants poop? | Popular science


Do the plants poop? Yes! All poop!

Well, somehow. It depends on what you mean exactly by "poo". If you're talking about solid waste coming out of a hole at the end of a tube just for poop, well, the plants obviously do not do it. But the poop is actually a way for our body to pump things that they can not use or that could hurt us. And plants do this totally too!

For example, when the Venus fly trap closes after a meal of tasty bugs, it releases chemicals that liquefy all the soft parts. The plant eats the delicious juice, but opens again to drop the crunchy pieces. These solids are waste and could be considered as vegetable shit. Pitcher plants, on the other hand, keep these crispy parts at the bottom of the pitcher's tube, where they rot with the help of microbes until they're gone or until they're gone. 39 that this leaf dies. So, instead of pooping, they turn part of their body into a septic system. Yum!

Of course, plants also suck carbon dioxide from the air and release oxygen in the incredible process called photosynthesis, but this probably looks more like breathing – so we do not breathe in any plant poop . They also give off extra water through their leaves, but it's not quite right either, but rather like sweating or peeing.

A plant is better able to get rid of salt, metals and other matter by spreading it through its leaves, bark, heart and roots. Mangrove trees, which often live in salt water, extract extra salt from their leaves. So they poop in salt. Other trees send waste to their bark or heartwood. Therefore, if you are reading this on paper or if you are sitting at a desk, it is likely that you are touching a tree poop now. And those beautiful leaves that color and fall in the fall? This is a great way for trees to get rid of materials that are not particularly useful: Beautiful, beautiful shit.

The plants are sucking too. Yes! The plants release methane, the same flammable gas, into the farts of you and me and a few million cows. Smithsonian biogeochemist Patrick Mcgonigal is a world expert in this plant gas. Just like we have in our stomach microbes that break down food and give off gas odors, trees contain microbes that also make farts. The gas escapes through the bark or stems. According to Mr. Mcgonigal, scientists do not really know at this point if the farts of the tree help the tree. But they know that all trees do not fart in the same way. "We're seeing some trees farting more than others," says Mcgonigal.

So as long as you think of poo in general, plants do it! They also do things like breathing, sweating, peeing and even farting. Who knew?