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Author Topic: How did these plants get onto the rocks and how do they manage to grow?  (Read 2657 times)

Offline Chemistry4me

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How did these plants manage to:

a) Get onto the volcanic rocks?
b) Grow in these conditions? How do they get their nutrients? Where are the roots?



 

Offline dentstudent

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a) By wind probably, or through fecal matter from birds.
b) This volcanic rock appears to be very pumice-like, and so the fine-root system of grasses will have no problem in getting a hold on them. Volcanic rock is also highly nutrient rich (maybe?!?!) and rain water can dissolve those nutrients which the grasses can then assimilate.

This sort of primary succession is very interesting for ecologists as it shows the development of populations from where there were previously none (hence primary succession). A famous example of this is Surtsey, a volcanic island that emerged from the sea in 1963 close to Iceland. As it was an island, any form of life would have to have come from the mainland, and so is a fantastic natural experiment in population migration.
« Last Edit: 07/04/2009 16:03:29 by dentstudent »
 

Offline Chemistry4me

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This is a volcanic island too.
 

Offline Chemistry4me

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Would they need some kind of nitrogen fixing bacteria to begin with?
 

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