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Why Botany is Cool. Plants are Chemical Factories ….why?

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Presentation on theme: "Why Botany is Cool. Plants are Chemical Factories ….why?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Why Botany is Cool

2 Plants are Chemical Factories ….why?

3 Dioscorea, yam

4 Erythroxylum coca

5 Snakeroot, Rauwolfia serpentina

6 Foxglove, Digitalis purpurea

7 Marijuana, Cannabis sativa

8 Important Medicinals Belladonna, Atropa belladonnaAtropine, scopalamine Rosy Periwinkle, Catharanthus roseusVincristine, vinblastine; treats cancer CinchonaQuinine, treats malaria Colchicum autumnaleColchicine, treats gout; mitotic poison EphedraEphedrine, decongestant Goldenseal, Hydrastis canadensis*Hydrastine, treats inflamed mucosa Tobacco, Nicotiana tabacumStimulant Opium Poppy, Papaver somniferumMorphine, codeine Willows, Salix sp.*Salicin, aspirin Pacific Yew, Taxus brevifoliaTaxol, treats cancer Chrysanthemum sp.Pyrethrum, treats lice; insecticide May Apple, Podophyllum peltatum*Podophllotoxin, treats venereal warts *might be found on campus

9 Taxol, Pacific Yew To get one kilogram requires cutting and stripping bark from ~12,000 trees Now being produced by cells in tissue culture

10 Even Wars… The First Opium War 1839-42 Between China and England Hong Kong taken over by the British

11 Directly or indirectly, plants provide all the food we eat.

12 Piper nigrum Only spice that could make decaying or heavily salted meat edible Drew many explorers, including Columbus, to discover rain forested areas.

13 Tea and Coffee










23 We Use Their Bodies Lumber Paper – An average tree produces pulp to make ~400 copies of a 40 page newspaper Wood pulp-cardboard, fiberboard, ice cream fillers, cellophane, rayon Fuel-my sole source of heat! Charcoal, fabrics, rope, baseball bats

24 Maple syrup (Acer saccharinum) Cinnamon, (Cinnamomum zeylanicum) Dyes Tannins Natural chewing gum (Manilkara zapota) Natural rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) 50 million Christmas trees Cork

25 The Lore of Trees More species of trees in Appalachians than in all of Europe A fully grown deciduous tree can transpire more than a ton of water per day $200,000 of services provided by a single tree living 50 years: – Producing oxygen-$32,000; keeps a family of 4 breathing for a year – Recycling water, regulating humidity-$37,000 – Habitat and shelter for wildlife-$31,000 – Reducing erosion-$31,000 – Pollution control-$62,500

26 Have You Hugged a Tree? Annually removes about 12 kg of carbon dioxide – ~equivalent to a 7000 km trip in a car For those who don’t hug… – NYC-for cutting down a public tree…$1000 fine and 90 days – NJ-for cutting down a shade tree, up to $1500 fine and replacement fee of up to $27/sq. in. ~$20,000 for an average tree.

27 Relationships With Wildlife





32 Have you thanked a plant today? Hug a tree on the way to your next class!

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