Where there’s smoke, there’s saplings

Researchers have confirmed that smoke from bushfires not only signals destruction. It also stimulates new vigorous plant to sprout once the next rains come.

Researchers at The University of Western Australia have discovered a gene that allows dormant seeds buried in the soil to detect germination stimulants in bushfire smoke called karrikins.

The same gene has also been found to provide the means for plants to respond to a growth hormone called strigolactone, which controls shoot branching, the formation of beneficial fungal associations, and germination of parasitic weeds.

Read more at University of Western Australia