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Respiration

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by SimonZ, Jun 3, 2019.

  1. SimonZ

    SimonZ Gardener

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    Do plants give out as much carbon dioxide during respiration as they take in during carbon assimiltion? I have always thought that one of the main problems of deforestation, cutting down too many trees etc, is that we lose the capacity for trapping carbon - but I've been thinking about respiration, and wondering if they exude comparable levels of carbon back into the eco system? I know they take in more oxygen during carbon assimilation than they take in during respiration, but what about carbon?
     
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    • pete

      pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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      Err,I dunno:scratch:
      Could you repeat the question:biggrin::biggrin:
       
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      • SimonZ

        SimonZ Gardener

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        [Could you repeat the question:biggrin::biggrin:[/QUOTE]
        Do plants give out as much carbon in respiration as they take in during carbon assimilation? Assuming it will largely depend on species, environments, circumstances, etc.
         
      • pete

        pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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        Do plants give out as much carbon in respiration as they take in during carbon assimilation? Assuming it will largely depend on species, environments, circumstances, etc.[/QUOTE]


        Sorry, I was being stupid.:mute::smile:
        I haven't got a clue but I hope someone can come up with something relevant for you.
         
        Last edited: Jun 3, 2019
      • john558

        john558 Super Gardener

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        Can I ask the audience please.:spinning:
         
      • Marley Farley

        Marley Farley Affable Admin! Staff Member

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        This is the only way I know it. As Pete says maybe someone can be more specific. :scratch:
        • Photosynthesis – plants absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and form it into sugar, starch and other organic compounds. This is the only process in the cycle that decreases the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
         
      • Fat Controller

        Fat Controller Cuddly 'NEW SHED' Scottish Admin! Staff Member

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        I have had similar thoughts to this, as my understanding is that whilst plants and trees do give out a little CO2 during the hours of darkness, they take in far more during the day. We have lost significant amounts of forest in this country alone, and when the rest of the world is considered, it is utterly horrifying to be honest.
         
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        • mazambo

          mazambo Super Gardener

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        • SimonZ

          SimonZ Gardener

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          Thanks, it helps in that it is a good tool for explaining the terms, but what I'm seeking is not so much a description of what happens, as an answer to whether more carbon is given out in respiration than is taken in during carbon assimilation. Having been looking into this on and off all day, I've concluded it is likely to be dependent on different factors in different plants at different times, rather than a straight yes or no answer.
           
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          • CanadianLori

            CanadianLori Total Gardener

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            The short answer is that there are never too many plants and trees in this era. Perhaps the effects of recreational bonfires should be a more valid study of how local practices destroy any benefits of trying to be better custodians of our planet through gardening.

            And as a by the by, I am always happy to still be releasing CO2 in tne morning .. still able to smell the flowers :)

            Now the big question... is this a curiosity question or is it about changing your approach to landscaping?
             
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            • mazambo

              mazambo Super Gardener

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            • Fat Controller

              Fat Controller Cuddly 'NEW SHED' Scottish Admin! Staff Member

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              Worthy of note - CO2 is not as poisonous a gas as CO is, and it is naturally occurring whereas CO is not. I am not convinced that the climate scientists have it entirely correct, and even less convinced that us paying tax after tax actually does anything other than make a shed load of money for some people.

              Given that daylight hours are a lot longer in the summer, when most plants are alive and awake, surely the net effect will be that they will absorb more than they put out?
               
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              • NigelJ

                NigelJ Total Gardener

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                Many climate scientists would agree with you on this.
                This report of a study is full of words like may, suggests, could, possibly, might etc. Sometimes trying to get hard facts and figures out of scientists can be like trying a jelly to the wall.
                Also note this at the bottom: "Editor's note November 22, 2017: This story was amended to emphasise that plants are a net carbon sink and they absorb more carbon dioxide than they emit. The ABC acknowledges a previous version of the story was unintentionally misleading and did not represent the research findings in an accurate context."
                There are just too many variables and unknowns to pin down a definitive answer, but to the best of my knowledge CO2 take up is greater than emission. CO2 take up provides the glucose required both for respiration and for plant growth (glucose --> starch, cellulose, lignin building blocks for plant growth): so if the plant is growing then it is taking up more CO2 than it releases.
                 
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                • SimonZ

                  SimonZ Gardener

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                  [QUOTEis this a curiosity question or is it about changing your approach to landscaping?[/QUOTE]

                  Curiosity.
                   
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