Category Botany

How can we help to save the plants?

You may think there is not much you can do to help save plants. But there are lots of things you can do. When you go on a hike, stay on the path. Leaving the path harms the plants.

Sometimes you can help plants by not doing things. Do not pick or dig up wild flowers and other plants. Even though some are still plentiful, others are becoming rare. Enjoy wild flowers by taking pictures, or by drawing them. Buy seeds gathered in national parks or from seed companies. Then other people can enjoy the wild flowers, too.

Remind grown-ups to be very careful with campfires or outdoor cooking. Make sure that fires are out completely before you leave the area. If the weather has been very dry, don’t build fires at all. And when you leave camp, take all your rubbish with you to a litter bin.

Don’t break off limbs or peel bark from trees. The outside bark protects a tree from harmful insects and fungus. The inner bark moves food from the leaves to the roots. Peeling off a tree’s bark or breaking off its limbs can kill the tree.

You can help save trees by recycling. Many communities have recycling programmes. This means that used paper is picked up and taken to factories that use it to make new paper. Your family can recycle junk mail, old magazines, boxes, cereal boxes, toilet paper tubes, and even the tags from teabags.   

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How people are working together to protect the world’s plants?

People are working together in many ways to save the world’s plants.

Some people work directly with plants. Growers trade seeds with one another to help a species’ chances to survive. They also grow endangered plants in greenhouses. Then they replant the plants in the wild. Sometimes, people build fences around rare plants in the wild to keep away animals that may eat or trample them.

Many groups work to protect plants. These include the United Nations, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). They inform governments and people about endangered plants and raise money to help save them.

Many governments have passed laws to protect plants. These laws protect endangered plants and animals from hunting, collecting, and other activities that could harm them or their communities. Many countries also have signed an agreement called CITES. By signing this agreement, they promise not to buy or sell endangered plants or animals, or products made from them.

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What causes fire in forest?

The forest rangers are worried. The weather is hot and there has been no rain for a long time. They know the forest is as dry as dust. It would take only a tiny spark or a lightning strike to turn the whole forest into a roaring, raging sea of fire.

From their watchtower high above the trees, the rangers see a thin spiral of smoke. Fire! There’s a fire in the forest!

A quick call for help goes out. Firefighters rush to the blaze, in trucks. Working quickly, they battle the blaze with streams of water and shovelfuls of soil. They chop down trees and dig up the ground to keep the fire from spreading.

Overhead, aeroplanes swoop over the fire, dropping water and chemicals on it. Other planes bring firefighters called smoke jumpers. They parachute into places that the firefighters on the ground can’t reach.

At last, after many hours or sometimes many days, the fire is out. Thousands of trees have been saved. Thousands of trees have been destroyed.

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How are plants affected by acid rain?

Imagine a world in which most of the trees are dead, where leaves and flowers are spotted with disease, and fruits can’t grow. It wouldn’t be a very nice world. But many scientists fear that’s what our world may be like someday – if we don’t do something now about air pollution.

Air pollution begins when gases from cars, factories, lawn mowers, and burning wood enter the air. Acid rain forms when certain chemicals from air pollution rise up and mix with the water in the clouds.

The rain or snow that falls from these polluted clouds harms the leaves of trees. The trees slowly lose their leaves and die. Acid rain also soaks into the soil and damages plants and crops. Many of the world’s forests – especially the pine forests of northern Europe – are suffering from the effects of acid rain.

Air pollution is a very serious problem. But scientists and many other people are working very hard to clean up the air and keep it clean, for the sake of all the world’s people and plants.

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Why are the Tropical rainforests vanishing?

Vanishing Tropical Rain Forests

Everywhere in the world people are taking over more land. In tropical rain forests, parts of the forest are cut down and burned to make room for crops. After a time, the soil in these parts is no longer good for growing crops. Then the people move on to another place. It is hard for new plants to grow in the poor soil. Without plants and trees, the soil that is left washes away.

People also destroy tropical rain forests to get timber. The trees that grow in these forests provide valuable wood. Every day, in many countries, people are cutting down trees that have taken years and years to grow.

In the world’s biggest tropical rain forest, the Amazon rain forest in South America, people are building a giant motorway. Trees are being cut down to build the motorway. When the road is finished, more people will travel into the rain forest. This may lead to even more destruction.

The world’s tropical rain forests are home to many kinds of rare animals. They may have lived there for many thousands of years in the safety of the trees. But now the tropical rain forest is disappearing fast. Scientists believe that some rain forest animals will die out even before they have been discovered!

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How humans are a threat to plants?

Threats from People

People are a plant’s worst enemies. This is mainly because people want or need things that can be made from plants.

Many kinds of plants are becoming rare because of their beauty. People often dig these plants up and take them home. The beautiful flowers of orchids and some cactuses have made them targets for collectors. The rare Cooktown orchid of Australia, though protected, is picked by collectors.

Great numbers of palm trees are destroyed for their stems, which are made into furniture, and for their fruit. Hundreds of types of palms are endangered today.

People kill many plants for use in medicines. The Pacific yew was once the source of a drug that doctors use to treat cancer. But getting the drug threatened these trees so much that researchers found other ways of making the drug.

People kill plants when they develop land. Lots of land is used for building. Even more is changed into farmland or grazing land for cattle and other animals. As the population increases, people build more roads, houses, factories, mines, shopping centres, and car parks.

But plants need their own special place to live in, too. They need the right kind of soil, the right temperature, and the right amount of rainfall. They need the right habitat. When habitats disappear, the animals that live there often disappear too. If we destroy too many natural habitats, we may lose many of the plants and animals in our lives.

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How animals are a threat to plants?

Threats from Animals

All over the world, plants are being destroyed by animals. Sometimes this is perfectly natural and is part of the balance of nature. Other times, it can be disastrous.

Insects such as caterpillars and grubs, which later become beetles, often eat leaves or burrow into the wood of trees. But sometimes, a nest of tent caterpillars eats all the buds or young leaves on a tree. When this happens, the tree will die.

Big problems also arise when people bring animals to areas where they don’t belong. Rabbits have destroyed valuable grazing land in Australia. They eat the grasses farmers need for their livestock. Rabbits were turned loose in 1859 by British settlers. But in Australia, rabbits have few natural enemies, so now there are too many rabbits.

In Hawaii, escaped pigs and goats have destroyed many rare plants. They trample the plants and eat the roots so the plants can’t grow back. Goats also may eat all the plants on a hillside. With no roots to hold the soil, rain can wash it down the hill. This loss of soil is called erosion and keeps plants from growing. Today, about half of Hawaii’s plants are either very rare, endangered, or already extinct.

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Why do plants need help?

Plants can get sick, just as people can. Insects and other animals can chew plants until they die. Fire can turn them into a pile of ashes. Polluted air from cars and factories can choke the life out of plants. And when ground is dug up for new factories, houses, and car parks, plants lose the space they need to live.

Everyone depends on plants for beauty, food, and fresh air. So everyone needs to save them and care for them.

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Are some plants in danger?

Plants in Danger

Endangered plants need people’s help to survive. A species, or kind, of plant is endangered when it is seriously close to disappearing, or becoming extinct. Scientists think that as many as 20,000 different kinds of plants are endangered.

Rafflesia is one of the world’s most endangered plants because the rain forests in which it lives are being destroyed. The giant rafflesia has the largest flower in the world. It grows up to 90 centimetres wide, and it smells like rotten meat! The smell attracts the flies that pollinate the flower.

For many years, scientists believed that the Virginia round-leaf birch and a type of Australian elaeocarpus tree were extinct. Then, in 1975, a scientist found a group of round-leaf birches alive and well. Since then, people have worked to protect the round-leaf birch.

In 1992, scientist discovered that elaeocarpus trees were still alive, too, growing in the rain forest of New South Wales. They have found more than 100 elaeocarpus trees in the wild since then.

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Who take care of the forests?

Taking Care of Forests

Forests, just like gardens, need care if they are to stay strong and healthy. People who take care of forests are called foresters. There are different kinds of foresters. Some foresters work for a government. They take care of national parks and forests so that people will have places for camping, sightseeing, hunting, and fishing.

Other foresters work in woods that are owned by timber and paper companies. They raise and care for the trees that are used to make houses, furniture, and paper.

All foresters protect trees from insects, animals, fires, and diseases. They make sure that unhealthy trees are replaced with young, healthy ones, and that the young trees grow up to be big, healthy trees. Foresters also plant new trees to replace trees that have been cut down.

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