February 2018

A 20-post collection

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Cucumbers are very easy to grow and make for a delicious treat. But this wonderful low-calorie vegetable has more to offer than just nutrients, water, and electrolytes. You can use it for carving as well. Cucumber carving is the art of carving cucumber to form beautiful objects, such as flowers »

Believe it or not!

• Cucumbers are 96% water. • Most of the flavor in the cucumber comes from the seeds. • Cucumber is one of the earliest domesticated vegetables. It was adopted around 4 thousand years ago and was used not only for eating but also in medicine. • Cucumbers have many types, shapes, textures and colors, »


• Cucumber peel is a good source of dietary fiber that helps reduce constipation, and offers some protection against colon cancers by eliminating toxic compounds from the gut. • It is a very good source of potassium, an important intracellular electrolyte. Potassium is a heart friendly electrolyte helps bring a reduction in »

Wearable Sensors to Measure Water Use in Plants

Researchers from Iowa State University developed a low-cost, easily produced, graphene-based, sensors-on-tape that can be attached to plants to provide various kinds of data to researchers and farmers. "With a tool like this, we can begin to breed plants that are more efficient in using water," said plant scientist Patrick »

Cancer Prevention: Omega-3s from Fish over Flax

Omega-3s from fish pack a stronger punch than flaxseed and other oils when it comes to cancer prevention, according to a first-ever University of Guelph study. Prof. David Ma has discovered that marine-based omega-3s are eight times more effective at inhibiting tumour development and growth. "This study is the first »

Robotic Weeders: To a Farm near You?

The future of weeding is here, and it comes in the form of a robot. The growing popularity of robotic weeders for specialty crops has grown partly out of necessity, says Steven Fennimore, an extension specialist at the University of California, Davis. Specialty crops are vegetables like lettuce, broccoli, tomatoes, »

Scientists Find "Thermostat" in Plant Immunity

A research conducted at the Institute of Genetics and Development Biology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) led by Zhou Jianmin has discovered how plants use a sophisticated mechanism to accurately control immune responses. The research team previously found that a protein kinase called BIK1 is a central player »

Digging Deep into Distinctly Different DNA

A University of Queensland discovery has deepened our understanding of the genetic mutations that arise in different tissues, and how these are inherited. Researchers from UQ's Queensland Brain Institute, led by Dr Steven Zuryn, found the rates of genetic mutations in mitochondrial DNA vary across differing tissue types, with the »

Wild Rice from Australia to Boost Global Food Security

Professor Robert Henry from the Queensland Alliance of Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI) have mapped the genetic family tree of wild rice growing in northern Australia's crocodile-infested waters. According to Professor Henry, wild rice could help boost global food security as its valuable traits such as drought tolerance and pest »

Drought Defense: Root Microbiome

Just as the microorganisms in our gut are increasingly recognized as important players in human health and behavior, new research from the University of Toronto Mississauga demonstrates that microorganisms are equally critical to the growth and health of plants. For example, plants that are able to recruit particular bacteria to »

Genetic Mechanism found to Enhance Cereal Crops’ Yield

A research team from the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center led by Andrea Eveland has identified a genetic mechanism that could increase the yields of cereal crops. The team performed the research in Setaria viridis, a grass that is closely related to economically important cereal crops and bioenergy feed stocks »