Flowers they’re a-changin’. No, it’s not Bob Dylan song but climate change

Flower, colour
Over the last 75 years, the colour of flowers has changed in response to the increasing temperature | Image - Prathap Ravishankar

Over the last 75 years, the colour of flowers has changed in response to the increasing temperature and shrinking ozone layers, a recent study has found.

Global warming has increased the ambient temperature, and the depletion of the ozone layer has resulted in increased ultraviolet (UV) radiation reaching the Earth’s surface. The plants have responded to these changes by altering the amount of the ultraviolet (UV) pigment in flower petals.

“We found that some species increased in pigmentation over time, but some showed little change or even declined in pigmentation over time,” says Matthew Koski, the lead researcher of the study and a plant ecologist at Clemson University.

The paper’s other authors are Drew MacQueen of the University of Virginia and Tia-Lynn Ashman of the University of Pittsburgh.

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