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How do Aquatic Plants work?

Susanna

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28 Mar 2020
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Birmingham
Hi folks, this might appear to be a silly question and might have already been answered.

I know generally , from school all those years ago, how terrestrial plants work.

utilising chemicals in the soil sunlight and co2 to produce growth and oxygen.

I have also found out recently that the plants we use in this hobby transition from terrestrial to aquatic so how do the processes in aquatic plants differ.

I know that the percentages of co2 in water are less than air.
 

Nick potts

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My knowledge is extremely limited, but my understanding is the basics processes are the same as those of terrestrial plants. Some (possibly all?) have adaptations to use other carbon sources if carbon dioxide is scarce.
 

Susanna

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Thanks Nick I'm just intrigued as to any differences due to the different enviroment
 
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Hi folks, this might appear to be a silly question and might have already been answered.
I would argue that in science there are no silly questions! In fact, the most important thing a scientist can say is “I don’t know”, because it’s only when you accept that you don’t know something that you can then investigate the answer with a truly neutral and open mind.

I know that the percentages of co2 in water are less than air.
And I believe that is one of the key drivers of the structural difference between emersed and submersed leaves. Emersed leaves have little difficulty getting the CO₂ that they need, so they can have a thick, somewhat waterproof skin and do all their gas exchange through pores. Submersed leaves don’t need a thick waterproof skin, and indeed that would hinder CO₂ uptake in the CO₂-poor underwater environment. So submersed leaves tend to have a much thinner skin through which gas exchange takes place.
 

ceg4048

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Chicago, USA
Hi,
As noted above the structural differences of leaf and stem allow terrestrial plants to have rigidity whereas aquatic plant leaves can be compared to a non-rigid contact lens. Typically, land plants have a network of gas channels which connect to openings on the leaf underside called stomata. So primary gas exchange and fluid transport occurs via these channels where evaporation of water from the leaf upper surface facilitates water transport through capillary action. The situation is completely reversed in a submerged condition. See the post https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/cause-of-death.16038/#post-166319 far additional summary.

Cheers
 

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