Sporophytes and calyptras
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Sporophytes and calyptras

Photograph by Ron Oldfield, Macquarie University, See http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aob/mcs295
The image shows sporophytes and calyptras of Funaria hygrometrica, a water moss (photograph by Ron Oldfield, Macquarie University). The calyptra is a gametophytic tissue that covers the tip of the elongating sporophyte. A young sporophyte with an intact calyptra appears in the lower left corner, whilst other sporophytes are in the process of shedding their calyptras or have already shed them. The calyptra is proposed to function, in part, as a maternal constraint on capsule expansion, as an expression of parent–offspring conflict.

See Haig http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aob/mcs295 (subscription link – free after April 2014)

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  • I disagree! A weed is a plant that has perfected the art of reproduction and regeneration. Something doesn't have to have worth to humans to be inherently valuable.

  • Thanks for the comment +Eric Hunt (I put up this post). That's useful feedback. We put up a lot more subscription links on Facebook than Google+, but they're different audiences so we try to do things differently. It's a balancing act between being able draw scientists' attention to papers and being able to talk about what's going on in plant science to everyone.

    Thinking about this, if we put out a press release then we make sure the paper is free access immediately. It's annoying to be told "Hey! Come look at this cool thing!" and discover you can't. For things like this, scientists might discover papers by RSS or Twitter and so on, but by photo? Not really, this is more a public thing, so I should have thought about that.

    I'll bear this in mind with future images.

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