The Worrying Effects of Global Warming on Flowers

A study conducted in the United Kingdom ascertained that plants suffer from global warming and bloom a month earlier.

Temperature is a determining factor in the flowering of plants, as anyone who has them at home is aware. We can choose where to place our plants at home so that they receive more or less heat, but nature does not provide us with this option. The planet’s temperature is rising, and plants are feeling the effects.

Measuring the changes that plants go through is critical for deciding how to act in the face of global warming. Their flowering calendar has a significant impact on agriculture and biodiversity.

Many species decide when to migrate or hibernate based on the flowering of the plants they need to survive. When a specific plant blooms, it attracts a specific insect, which then calls a specific bird, and so on. The timing of flowering is critical to maintaining this balance. If it changes, the affected species must adapt quickly enough to survive. Otherwise, this ecological imbalance could result in a loss of biodiversity.

Furthermore, if fruit trees flower too early, they risk losing entire crops in the event of a late frost. If this mismatch becomes widespread, the consequences for the agricultural sector could be disastrous.

The laboratory alone is insufficient.

Gauging the effect of global warming on plant flowering is an essential component in determining the true impact of global warming on the economy or biodiversity. Several studies have attempted to simulate the temperature increase in the laboratory, but this method has proven ineffective in predicting the actual time of flowering.

That paper, published in Nature a decade ago, compared the results of laboratory experiments with long-term observational studies. The conclusion was unmistakable: the experiments did not correspond to reality.

The experiments predicted that increased temperature would cause some advance in plant flowering, but they did not calibrate it correctly. Observational studies revealed that the advance was more than eight times greater than the laboratory prediction. Furthermore, the observational studies revealed that plants that flowered earlier were more sensitive to temperature changes, whereas the experiments did not show this trend.

Clearly, experiments cannot provide all of the information required to assess the effects of global warming on plant flowering. However, carrying out observational studies is not easy. They require a large number of observations on a wide variety of species over a long period of time to be reliable.

Nature’s calendar

A new study meets all of these criteria, with over 400,000 observations of 406 species spanning nearly 300 years. The work was done in the United Kingdom, and the data came from a variety of sources. Nature’s Calendar gathers 3.5 million records from 1736 to the present day, from scientists to naturalists and people involved in gardening as a profession or hobby.

The study looked at the earliest flowering dates of trees, shrubs, herbs, and climbing plants found throughout the United Kingdom. These observations were classified based on their location, elevation, and whether they lived in urban or rural areas. These dates were then compared to monthly weather records.

“Human life is no longer possible in some areas if temperatures exceed extremely high levels. If the sea level rises by more than one meter in some coastal areas, dikes will not be able to protect the area.”

Article Author Gerluxe

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