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Desert rhubarb -- a self-irrigating plant
Date:7/1/2009

are closer to that of Mediterranean plants, reaching up to 426 mm per year. This is 16 times the amount of water harvested by the small-leafed plants of the Negev desert region. When the research team watered the plant artificially, they observed how the water flows along the course of the leave's depressed veins to the ground surrounding the plant's single root and then penetrates the ground to a depth of 10 cm or more. Under the experimental conditions, water penetrated the ground only as deep as 1 cm.

"We know of no other plant in the deserts of the world that functions in this manner," the researchers concluded.


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Contact: Rachel Feldman
rfeldman@univ.haifa.ac.il
972-482-88722
University of Haifa
Source:Eurekalert  

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