The Six Day Life Cycle of Arabidopsis

Sunday September 1, 2013

By Shanon Trueman

Imagine if your entire life cycle - from childhood to adulthood to old age - took only six days. You have SIX days to do everything you need to do before your life is over. What would you do?

Well, Arabidopsis thaliana accomplishes quite a bit in the six days of its life cycle. It grows leaves, produces lovely, tiny white flowers, and produces fruits containing many seeds for the next generation. It also is one of the most highly studied organisms in biology. The short life cycle of Arabidopsis contributes to its suitability to be a "model system".

Find out why Arabidopsis is the most famous plant you may not have ever heard of.

Photo: Peggy Greb, USDA-ARS.


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