Plants can suffer 'jetlag' if their internal clocks are disturbed

  • Living
  • Tuesday, 04 Aug 2020

Like other organisms, plants have an internal clock. If their day-and-night biorhythm is disturbed, they might have trouble growing. Photo: dpa

People and animals quite obviously have a biorhythm that dictates when they should, for example, eat or sleep. But even though it's not as noticeable, plants also have their own internal clocks.

A plant's biorhythm, which regulates things such as when it should open or close its flowers, is influenced by sunlight. They know that it's night or day based on their sugar levels, explains Frank Werner from the German Ornamental Plants Association.

Sugar is produced by photosynthesis – which plants need sunlight in order to carry out.

So when the sun sets, the plants know that it's time to close their flowers. But if their internal clock is disturbed, perhaps by moving them somewhere, the plants get "jetlag" and have trouble growing.

Werner's tip: When cultivating and growing plants, gardeners should try to ensure that their internal clock isn't disturbed. That allows the plants to ensure that their fruits ripen on time, for example. – dpa

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plants , plant care , jetlag


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