Concerns grow over tainted sewage sludge spread on croplands

For more than 20 years, the eastern Michigan town of Lapeer sent leftover sludge from its sewage treatment plant to area farms, supplying them with high-quality, free fertilizer while avoiding the expense of disposal elsewhere.

Analyzing the world's oldest woody plant fossil

Mapping the evolution of life on Earth requires a detailed understanding of the fossil record, and scientists are using synchrotron-based technologies to look back—way, way back—at the cell structure and chemistry of ...

Decoding the scent of a plant

The plant and animal kingdoms are rich in odors that function as key communication modules. Specifically, the interactions between plants and insects come with a plethora of odor exchanges. While some scents help attract ...

Plants defend against insects by inducing 'leaky gut syndrome'

Plants may induce "leaky gut syndrome"—permeability of the gut lining—in insects as part of a multipronged strategy for protecting themselves from being eaten, according to researchers at Penn State. By improving our ...

Mustering a milder mustard

The mustards, broccolis and cabbages of the world share a distinct and bitter taste. Some consider the flavor of cruciferous plants their strongest attribute. But even in India and China, where Brassicas have been cultivated ...

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