Why plants are so sensitive to gravity: The lowdown

Paris, France (SPX) May 03, 2018

If you tilt a plant, it will alter its growth to bend back upwards. But how does it detect the inclination? With cellular clinometers: cells filled with microscopic grains of starch called statoliths.

In each of these cells, the pile of statoliths settles to the bottom. This provides a point of reference to guide growth – by modifying the distribution of a growth hormone – so that the plan