Illustration for article titled Biologists Recommend Trees Put Aside A Little Phosphorus For Unexpected Emergencies

CAMBRIDGE, MA—Noting that the measure could prevent flora from being caught off guard in their later years, biologists at Harvard University issued a recommendation Monday that trees put aside a little phosphorous for any unexpected emergencies. “You never know when the environment is going to throw you a curveball, so it’s important for trees to start building up a nest egg of a few crucial nutrients for their golden years,” said scientist Lisa Bevalacqua, explaining that while young saplings might think it’s too early for them to begin planning for their future, holding onto just a few grams of phosphorous a day would give them a buffer for any unforeseen crises down the road. “As we know, your average tree is only one drought or Dutch elm disease scare away from having their savings completely depleted. There are far too many oaks and beeches still competing for sunlight and water well into their 900s. If seedlings show just a little foresight now, they’ll be able to have the peace of mind that comes with having a solid photosynthesis plan.” Bevalacqua added that trees should be prepared to set aside even greater levels of phosphorus in their leaves and branches if they were planning on having seeds.


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