Green Technology Featured Articles
January 17, 2013

March Showers Bring April Flowers



Climate change, while also instilling some fear, has also brought to our attention some innate childhood lyrical phrases that might have to be altered. By digging through Henry David Thoreau’s flowering research and comparing his records with the today’s findings, scientists have found that flowers are blooming earlier each spring.

In an effort to discover how global warming is affecting the world today, scientists have been studying research done the greatest thinkers in the past, like the idyllic writer Thoreau. Thanks to his flowering observations and in-depth diaries, researches like Elizabeth Ellwood of Boston University have been able to prove how temperatures are warming.


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In the 1800s, Thoreau created spreadsheets of flowering dates for many known and unknown flowers near the Wisconsin River and Walden Pond in Concord, Mass.

Ellwood and her colleagues found that over the past 161 years, the first flowering dates for 43 of the most common plant species by Walden Pond started ten days earlier. The average spring temperature has increased six degrees Fahrenheit since Thoreau did his last observation.

In the Wisconsin area, the average spring temperature also rose over the last 80 years and the first flowering has come a week earlier for 23 species that were studied.

Even with flower findings, which seem insignificant at first when aligning with such an immense term like global warming, scientists are better able to foresee the future for the environment during this time of great change.

For plants to endure the climate change they will have to begin evolving, or at some point it will get too hot for them to survive, according to David Inouye, a University of Maryland biologist. The fact that they have no begun evolving means the temperatures have not reached heightened point yet, which buys the world some more time for the effects of global warming to begin creating sweeping changes.

To learn how other ways how global warming is already changing the world visit the World Nuclear Association.

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Edited by Rich Steeves

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