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The mechanism by which plants take up water means that they don't take up things like heavy metals, or only in a very limited way. They are very selective!
Unfortunately trees are not selective enough as they are killed quite quickly with an introduction of heavy metals to their water supply, or for that matter an abundance of salt!The questions still remain.After evaporation the trees are left with a heavy concentration of salts and minerals at their tops.Are all these minerals absorbed and considered as nutritious for a tree? or Does a tree have a kind of limbic/kidney/liver system that stores any unused solutes? or Does a tree send the unused solutes back down to the roots?And another question.If a tree hates air getting into its plumbing, how do the leaves manage to let the relatively large H2O molecules out while keeping the smaller oxygen molecules from entering?Any help on these questions would be most appreciated!Blaine
Thanks Andrew,I'm siding with you with regards to what happens to all the heavy minerals at the tops of the trees. I know that you're not a fan of the theory that says it's osmosis that provides the main power for lifting water to the tops of the trees, but to give your ideas more solidity we need to let the advocates of osmosis explain away the accumulation of these solutes at the tops of trees!Any ideas on how the leaves prevent oxygen entering the tree's plumbing while letting out the larger water molecules?