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Plants prefer their kin, but crowd out competition when sharing a pot with strangers
Date:11/16/2009

l level, says Murphy. Sea rockets would have easy access to sunlight in its natural beach habitat and therefore, would struggle for nutrients underground. Conversely, Impatiens thrive in the shady woodlands, where moisture is plentiful, but sunlight is scarce.

The roots seem to tell siblings from strangers, he says, whether the change in behaviour is above or below ground. But simply placing them beside one another, in separate pots, did not produce the same results.

In the lab, researchers germinated the seeds from Impatiens collected in the field, to ensure they were properly grouped by sibling and non-siblings.


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Contact: Michelle Donovan
donovam@mcmaster.ca
905-525-9140
McMaster University
Source:Eurekalert

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