A melon is any of various plants of the family Cucurbitaceae with sweet edible, fleshy fruit. The word "melon" can refer to either the plant or to the fruit. Botanically, a melon is a kind of berry a "pepo"; the word melon derives from Latin melopepo, the latinization of the Greek μηλοπέπων, meaning "melon", itself a compound of μῆλον, "apple, treefruit" and πέπων, amongst others "a kind of gourd or melon". Many different cultivars have been produced of cantaloupes. Melons originated in Northeastern Africa and the Middle East, they began to appear in Europe toward the end of the Western Roman Empire. Melons are known to have been grown by the ancient Egyptians; however recent discoveries of melon seeds dated between 1350 and 1120 BC in Nuragic sacred wells have shown that melons were first brought to Europe by the Nuragic civilization of Sardinia during the Bronze Age. Melons were among the earliest plants to be domesticated in both the Old and among the first crop species brought by westerners to the New Worlds.
Early European settlers in the New World are recorded as growing honeydew and casaba melons as early as the 1600s. A number of Native American tribes in New Mexico, including Acoma, Isleta, Santo Domingo and San Felipe, maintain a tradition of growing their own characteristic melon cultivars, derived from melons introduced by the Spanish. Organizations like Native Seeds/SEARCH have made an effort to collect and preserve these and other heritage seeds. Winter melon is the only member of the genus Benincasa; the mature winter melon is a cooking vegetable, used in Asia specially in India. The immature melons are used as a culinary fruit. Egusi is a wild melon, similar in appearance to the watermelon; the flesh is inedible. Other species that have the same culinary role, that are called egusi include Cucumeropsis mannii and Lagenaria siceraria. Watermelon originated in Africa, where evidence indicates that it has been cultivated for over 4,000 years, it is a popular summer fruit in all parts of the world.
Melons in genus Cucumis are culinary fruits, include the majority of culinary melons. All but a handful of culinary melon varieties belong to the species Cucumis melo L. Horned melon, a traditional food plant in Africa with distinctive spikes. Now grown in California, Chile and New Zealand as well. Muskmelon C. melo cantalupensis, with skin, rough and warty, not netted. The European cantaloupe, with ribbed, pale green skin, was domesticated in the 18th century, in Cantalupo in Sabina, Italy, by the pope's gardener, it is known as a'rockmelon' in Australia and New Zealand. Varieties include the French Charentais and the Burpee Seeds hybrid Netted Gem, introduced in the 19th century; the Yubari King is a prized Japanese cantaloupe cultivar. The Persian melon resemble a large cantaloupe with a finer netting. C. melo inodorus, casabas and Asian melons Argos, a large, with orange wrinkled skin, orange flesh, strong aroma. A characteristic is its pointed ends. Growing in some areas of Greece, from which it was named.
Canary melon, a large, bright-yellow melon with a pale green to white inner flesh. Casaba, bright yellow, with a smooth, furrowed skin. Less keeps longer. Hami melon from Hami, China. Flesh is crisp. Honeydew, with a sweet, green-colored flesh. Grown as bailan melon in Lanzhou, China. There is a second variety which has white flesh and tastes like a moist pear. Kolkhoznitsa melon, with dense, white flesh. Japanese melons. Korean melon, a yellow melon with white lines running across the fruit and white inside. Can be crisp and sweet or juicy when left to ripen longer. Oriental pickling melon Piel de Sapo or Santa Claus melon, with a blotchy green skin and white sweet-tasting flesh. Sugar melon a smooth, round fruit. Tiger melon, an orange and black striped melon from Turkey with a soft pulp. C. melo reticulatus, true muskmelons, with netted skin. North American cantaloupe, distinct from the European cantaloupe, with the net-like skin pattern common to other C. melo reticulatus varieties. Galia and juicy with either faint green or rosy pink flesh.
Sharlyn melons, with taste between honeydew and cantaloupes, netted skin, greenish-orange rind, white flesh. C. melo agrestis, Wilder melon cultivars, with smooth skin, tart or bland taste. Confused with cucumbers. C. melo conomon, Conomon Melons, Pickling Melons, with smooth skin, ranging from tart or bland taste to mild sweetness in Korean Melon. Oriental Pickling melon, Korean Melon. Related to wilder melons. Modern crossbred e.g. Crenshaw, Crane. Cucurbita – Squash List of culinary fruits List of gourds and squashes List of melon dishes Mabberley, D. J.. The Plant Book. A portable dictionary of the higher plants. Cambridge University Press. P. 706. ISBN 0-521-34060-8. Retrieved 2014-10-20. Magness, J. R. G. M. Markle, C. C. Compton. "Food and feed crops of the United States". IR Bulletin. New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station. 1. OL 14117370M. CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list Interregional Research Project IR-4 "Cucumis melo L." Purdue University, Center for New Crops & Plant Products. Retrieved 2014-10-20.
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A fossil is any preserved remains, impression, or trace of any once-living thing from a past geological age. Examples include bones, exoskeletons, stone imprints of animals or microbes, objects preserved in amber, petrified wood, coal, DNA remnants; the totality of fossils is known as the fossil record. Paleontology is the study of fossils: their age, method of formation, evolutionary significance. Specimens are considered to be fossils if they are over 10,000 years old; the oldest fossils are around 3.48 billion years old to 4.1 billion years old. The observation in the 19th century that certain fossils were associated with certain rock strata led to the recognition of a geological timescale and the relative ages of different fossils; the development of radiometric dating techniques in the early 20th century allowed scientists to quantitatively measure the absolute ages of rocks and the fossils they host. There are many processes that lead to fossilization, including permineralization and molds, authigenic mineralization and recrystallization, adpression and bioimmuration.
Fossils vary in size from one-micrometre bacteria to dinosaurs and trees, many meters long and weighing many tons. A fossil preserves only a portion of the deceased organism that portion, mineralized during life, such as the bones and teeth of vertebrates, or the chitinous or calcareous exoskeletons of invertebrates. Fossils may consist of the marks left behind by the organism while it was alive, such as animal tracks or feces; these types of fossil are called trace ichnofossils, as opposed to body fossils. Some fossils are called chemofossils or biosignatures; the process of fossilization varies according to external conditions. Permineralization is a process of fossilization; the empty spaces within an organism become filled with mineral-rich groundwater. Minerals precipitate from the groundwater; this process can occur in small spaces, such as within the cell wall of a plant cell. Small scale permineralization can produce detailed fossils. For permineralization to occur, the organism must become covered by sediment soon after death, otherwise decay commences.
The degree to which the remains are decayed when covered determines the details of the fossil. Some fossils consist only of skeletal teeth; this is a form of diagenesis. In some cases, the original remains of the organism dissolve or are otherwise destroyed; the remaining organism-shaped hole in the rock is called an external mold. If this hole is filled with other minerals, it is a cast. An endocast, or internal mold, is formed when sediments or minerals fill the internal cavity of an organism, such as the inside of a bivalve or snail or the hollow of a skull; this is a special form of mold formation. If the chemistry is right, the organism can act as a nucleus for the precipitation of minerals such as siderite, resulting in a nodule forming around it. If this happens before significant decay to the organic tissue fine three-dimensional morphological detail can be preserved. Nodules from the Carboniferous Mazon Creek fossil beds of Illinois, USA, are among the best documented examples of such mineralization.
Replacement occurs. In some cases mineral replacement of the original shell occurs so and at such fine scales that microstructural features are preserved despite the total loss of original material. A shell is said to be recrystallized when the original skeletal compounds are still present but in a different crystal form, as from aragonite to calcite. Compression fossils, such as those of fossil ferns, are the result of chemical reduction of the complex organic molecules composing the organism's tissues. In this case the fossil consists of original material, albeit in a geochemically altered state; this chemical change is an expression of diagenesis. What remains is a carbonaceous film known as a phytoleim, in which case the fossil is known as a compression. However, the phytoleim is lost and all that remains is an impression of the organism in the rock—an impression fossil. In many cases, however and impressions occur together. For instance, when the rock is broken open, the phytoleim will be attached to one part, whereas the counterpart will just be an impression.
For this reason, one term covers the two modes of preservation: adpression. Because of their antiquity, an unexpected exception to the alteration of an organism's tissues by chemical reduction of the complex organic molecules during fossilization has been the discovery of soft tissue in dinosaur fossils, including blood vessels, the isolation of proteins and evidence for DNA fragments. In 2014, Mary Schweitzer and her colleagues reported the presence of iron particles associated with soft tissues recovered from dinosaur fossils. Based on various experiments that studied the interaction of iron in haemoglobin with blood vessel tissue they proposed that solution hypoxia coupled with iron chelation enhances the stability and preservation of soft tissue and provides the basis for an explanation for the unforeseen preservation of fossil soft tissues. However, a older study based on eight taxa ranging in time from the Devonian to the Jurassic found that reasonably well-preserved fibrils that represent collagen were preser
Cucurbita is a genus of herbaceous vines in the gourd family, Cucurbitaceae known as cucurbits, native to the Andes and Mesoamerica. Five species are grown worldwide for their edible fruit, variously known as squash, pumpkin, or gourd depending on species and local parlance, for their seeds. Other kinds of gourd called bottle-gourds, are native to Africa and belong to the genus Lagenaria, in the same family and subfamily as Cucurbita but in a different tribe; these other gourds are used as utensils or vessels, their young fruits are eaten much like those of Cucurbita species. Most Cucurbita species are herbaceous vines that grow several meters in length and have tendrils, but non-vining "bush" cultivars of C. pepo and C. maxima have been developed. The yellow or orange flowers on a Cucurbita plant are of two types: female and male; the female flowers produce the male flowers produce pollen. Many North and Central American species are visited by specialist bee pollinators, but other insects with more general feeding habits, such as honey bees visit.
There is debate about the taxonomy of the genus, as the number of accepted species varies from 13 to 30. The five domesticated species are Cucurbita argyrosperma, C. ficifolia, C. maxima, C. moschata, C. pepo. All of these can be treated as winter squash; the fruits of the genus Cucurbita are good sources of nutrients, such as vitamin A and vitamin C, among other nutrients according to species. The fruits have many culinary uses including pumpkin pie, bread, puddings and soups. Cucurbita species fall into two main groups; the first group are annual or short-lived perennial vines and are mesophytic, i.e. they require a more or less continuous water supply. The second group are perennials growing in arid zones and so are xerophytic, tolerating dry conditions. Cultivated Cucurbita species were derived from the first group. Growing 5 to 15 meters in height or length, the plant stem produces tendrils to help it climb adjacent plants and structures or extend along the ground. Most species do not root from the nodes.
The vine of the perennial Cucurbita can become semiwoody. There is wide variation in size and color among Cucurbita fruits, within a single species. C. ficifolia is an exception, being uniform in appearance. The morphological variation in the species C. pepo and C. maxima is so vast that its various subspecies and cultivars have been misidentified as separate species. The typical cultivated Cucurbita species has five-lobed or palmately divided leaves with long petioles, with the leaves alternately arranged on the stem; the stems in some species are angular. All of the above-ground parts may be hairy with various types of trichomes, which are hardened and sharp. Spring-like tendrils are branching in some species. C. argyrosperma has ovate-cordate leaves. The shape of C. pepo leaves varies widely. C. moschata plants can have dense pubescence. C. ficifolia leaves are angular and have light pubescence. The leaves of all four of these species may not have white spots. There are male and female flowers on a single plant, these grow singly, appearing from the leaf axils.
Flowers have five fused yellow to a green bell-shaped calyx. Male flowers in Cucurbitaceae have five stamens, but in Cucurbita there are only three, their anthers are joined together so that there appears to be one. Female flowers have thick pedicels, an inferior ovary with 3–5 stigmas that each have two lobes; the female flowers of C. argyrosperma and C. ficifolia have larger corollas than the male flowers. Female flowers of C. pepo have a small calyx, but the calyx of C. moschata male flowers is comparatively short. Cucurbita fruits are fleshy. Botanists classify the Cucurbita fruit as a pepo, a special type of berry derived from an inferior ovary, with a thick outer wall or rind with hypanthium tissue forming an exocarp around the ovary, a fleshy interior composed of mesocarp and endocarp; the term "pepo" is used for Cucurbitaceae fruits, where this fruit type is common, but the fruits of Passiflora and Carica are sometimes pepos. The seeds, which are attached to the ovary wall and not to the center, are large and flat with a large embryo that consists entirely of two cotyledons.
Fruit size varies considerably: wild fruit specimens can be as small as 4 centimeters and some domesticated specimens can weigh well over 300 kilograms. The current world record was set in 2014 by Beni Meier of Switzerland with a 2,323.7-pound pumpkin. Cucurbita was formally described in a way that meets the requirements of modern botanical nomenclature by Linnaeus in his Genera Plantarum, the fifth edition of 1754 in conjunction with the 1753 first edition of Species Plantarum. Cucurbita pepo is the type species of the genus. Linnaeus included the species C. pepo, C. verrucosa and C. melopepo, as well as C. citrullus and C. lagenaria (both are not Cucurbita but are in the family Cucurbitaceae. The Cucurbita digitata, C. foetidissima, C. galeotti, C. pedatifolia species groups are xerophytes, arid zone perennials with storage roots.
In botany, a berry is a fleshy fruit without a stone produced from a single flower containing one ovary. Berries so defined include grapes and tomatoes, as well as cucumbers and bananas, but exclude certain fruits called berries, such as strawberries and raspberries; the berry is the most common type of fleshy fruit in which the entire outer layer of the ovary wall ripens into a edible "pericarp". Berries may be formed from one or more carpels from the same flower; the seeds are embedded in the fleshy interior of the ovary, but there are some non-fleshy exceptions, such as peppers, with air rather than pulp around their seeds. Many berries are edible, but others, such as the fruits of the potato and the deadly nightshade, are poisonous to humans. A plant that bears berries is said to be baccate. In everyday English, a "berry" is any small edible fruit. Berries are juicy, brightly coloured, sweet or sour, do not have a stone or pit, although many pips or seeds may be present. In botanical language, a berry is a simple fruit having seeds and fleshy pulp produced from the ovary of a single flower.
The ovary can be superior. It is indehiscent, i.e. it does not have a special "line of weakness" along which it splits to release the seeds when ripe. The pericarp is divided into three layers; the outer layer is called the "exocarp" or "epicarp". Botanists have not applied these terms consistently. Exocarp and endocarp may be restricted to more-or-less single-layered "skins", or may include tissues adjacent to them; the inconsistency in usage has been described as "a source of confusion". The nature of the endocarp distinguishes a berry from a drupe, which has a hardened or stony endocarp; the two kinds of fruit intergrade, depending on the state of the endocarp. Some sources have attempted to quantify the difference, e.g. requiring the endocarp to be less than 2 mm thick in a berry. Examples of botanical berries include: "True berries", or "baccae", may be required to have a thin outer skin, not self-supporting when removed from the berry; this distinguishes, for example, a Vaccinium or Solanum berry from an Adansonia amphisarca, which has a dry, more rigid and self-supporting skin.
The fruit of citrus, such as the orange and lemon, is a berry with a thick rind and a juicy interior divided into segments by septa, given the special name "hesperidium". A specialized term, pepo, is used for fruits of the gourd family Cucurbitaceae, which are modified to have a hard outer rind, but are not internally divided by septae; the fruits of Passiflora and Carica are sometimes considered pepos. Berries that develop from an inferior ovary are sometimes termed epigynous berries or false berries, as opposed to true berries, which develop from a superior ovary. In epigynous berries, the berry includes tissue derived from parts of the flower besides the ovary; the floral tube, formed from the basal part of the sepals and stamens can become fleshy at maturity and is united with the ovary to form the fruit. Common fruits that are sometimes classified as epigynous berries include bananas, members of the genus Vaccinium, members of the family Cucurbitaceae. Many fruits referred to as berries are not actual berries by the scientific definition, but fall into one of the following categories: Drupes are fleshy fruits produced from a single-seeded ovary with a hard woody layer surrounding the seed.
Familiar examples include the stonefruits of the genus Prunus, coconut and Persea species. Some definitions make the mere presence of an internally differentiated endocarp the defining feature of a drupe; the term "drupaceous" is used of fruits that have the general structure and texture of a drupe, without meeting the full definition. Other drupe-like fruits with a single seed that lack the stony endocarp include sea-buckthorn, an achene, surrounded by a swollen hypanthium that provides the fleshy layer. Fruits of Coffea species are described as either berries; the pome fruits produced by plants in subtribe Pyrinae of family Rosaceae, such as apples and pears, have a structure in which tough tissue separates the seeds from the outer softer pericarp. However, some of the smaller pomes are sometimes referred to as berries. Amelanchier pomes become so soft at maturity that they resemble a blueberry and are known as Juneberries, serviceberries or Saskatoon berries. Aggregate or compound fruits contain seeds from different ovaries of a single flower, with the individual "fruitlets" joined together at maturity to form the complete fruit.
Examples of aggregate fruits called "berries" include members of the genus Rubus, such as blackberry and raspberry. Other large aggregate fruits, such as soursop, are not called "berries", although some sources do use this term. Multiple fruits are the fruits of two or more multiple flowers that are merged or packed together; the mulberry is a berry-like example of a multiple fruit.
Luffa is a genus of tropical and subtropical vines in the cucumber family. In everyday non-technical usage, the luffa spelled loofah refers to the fruit of the two species L. aegyptiaca and L. acutangula. The fruit of these species is eaten as a vegetable; the fruit must be harvested at a young stage of development to be edible. The vegetable is popular in India and Vietnam; when the fruit is ripened, it is fibrous. The developed fruit is the source of the loofah scrubbing sponge, used in bathrooms and kitchens. Luffa are not frost-hardy, require 150 to 200 warm days to mature; the name luffa was taken by European botanists in the 17th century from the Egyptian Arabic name لوف lūf. The fruit section of L. aegyptiaca may be allowed to mature and used as a bath or kitchen sponge after being processed to remove everything but the network of xylem fibers. If the loofah is allowed to ripen and dried on the vine, the flesh disappears leaving only the fibrous skeleton and seeds, which can be shaken out.
Marketed as luffa or loofah, the sponge is used as a body scrub. In Paraguay, panels are made out of luffa combined with recycled plastic; these can be used to construct houses. Luffa are best eaten. In Vietnamese cuisine, the gourd is called "mướp hương" and is a common ingredient in soups and stir-fried dishes. In Myanmar, it is known as that pwet thee. In Hindi-speaking North Indian states, it is called torai, cooked as vegetable, but in central/Western India specially in MP, it is called gilki. Torai is less popular than gilki in central western India. In Gujarat it is known as turya as well as ghissori or ghissora in the Kutchi language, it is a simple but popular vegetable made with a plentiful tomato gravy and garnished with green chillies and fresh coriander. When cooked roti is shredded by hand and mixed into it, it is colloquially known as "rotli shaak ma bhuseli". Alternatively this dish is eaten mixed with plain cooked rice. In Bengali-speaking Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal, it is known as jhinge and a popular vegetable.
It is cooked with shrimp, fish, or meat. In Assam, it is called bhul and is cooked with sour fish curry along with taro. In Tamil Nadu, the gourd is called peerkangai and used as a vegetable to make peerkangai kootu and thogayal; the skin is used to make chutney. In Karnataka's Malenadu it is known as tuppadahirekayi, which translates as "buttersquash", it grows in this region and is consumed when it is still tender and green. It is used as a vegetable in curries, but as a snack, dipped in chickpea batter and deep fried. In Andhra Pradesh, it is called nethi beerakaya, and in Assam it is called bhula. It is used as a vegetable in a curry and stir fry. In Kerala, it is called peechinga, it is used as a vegetable, cooked with dal or stir fried. Matured fruit is used as a natural scrub in rural Kerala. In some places such as Wayanad, it grows as a creeper on fences. In Maharashtra, India and ghosavala are common vegetables prepared with either crushed dried peanuts or with beans. In Manipur, Sebot is cooked with other ingredients like potato, dried fish, fermented fish and served.
It is steamed and consumed or crushed with other ingredients and served with steamed rice. Fried ones are favorites for many. In Japan, it is cultivated all over the country during summer, it is used as a green vegetable in traditional dishes of the Nansei Islands and Kyushu while other regions of Japan grow it predominantly for use as a sponge or for applying soap and lotion. As with bitter melon, many people grow it outside building windows as a natural sunscreen in summer. In China and Indonesia, the Philippines and Manipur, the luffa is eaten as a green vegetable in various dishes, it is known as "Chinese okra" in Canada and the U. S. In Spanish, it is called an estropajo. Luffa species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species, including Hypercompe albicornis. In Myanmar derived from the word sebot in Manipur; when it is young it is used as food. Gourd Multilingual taxonomic information at the University of Melbourne
The Cambrian Period was the first geological period of the Paleozoic Era, of the Phanerozoic Eon. The Cambrian lasted 55.6 million years from the end of the preceding Ediacaran Period 541 million years ago to the beginning of the Ordovician Period 485.4 mya. Its subdivisions, its base, are somewhat in flux; the period was established by Adam Sedgwick, who named it after Cambria, the Latin name of Wales, where Britain's Cambrian rocks are best exposed. The Cambrian is unique in its unusually high proportion of lagerstätte sedimentary deposits, sites of exceptional preservation where "soft" parts of organisms are preserved as well as their more resistant shells; as a result, our understanding of the Cambrian biology surpasses that of some periods. The Cambrian marked a profound change in life on Earth. Complex, multicellular organisms became more common in the millions of years preceding the Cambrian, but it was not until this period that mineralized—hence fossilized—organisms became common; the rapid diversification of life forms in the Cambrian, known as the Cambrian explosion, produced the first representatives of all modern animal phyla.
Phylogenetic analysis has supported the view that during the Cambrian radiation, metazoa evolved monophyletically from a single common ancestor: flagellated colonial protists similar to modern choanoflagellates. Although diverse life forms prospered in the oceans, the land is thought to have been comparatively barren—with nothing more complex than a microbial soil crust and a few molluscs that emerged to browse on the microbial biofilm. Most of the continents were dry and rocky due to a lack of vegetation. Shallow seas flanked the margins of several continents created during the breakup of the supercontinent Pannotia; the seas were warm, polar ice was absent for much of the period. Despite the long recognition of its distinction from younger Ordovician rocks and older Precambrian rocks, it was not until 1994 that the Cambrian system/period was internationally ratified; the base of the Cambrian lies atop a complex assemblage of trace fossils known as the Treptichnus pedum assemblage. The use of Treptichnus pedum, a reference ichnofossil to mark the lower boundary of the Cambrian, is difficult since the occurrence of similar trace fossils belonging to the Treptichnids group are found well below the T. pedum in Namibia and Newfoundland, in the western USA.
The stratigraphic range of T. pedum overlaps the range of the Ediacaran fossils in Namibia, in Spain. The Cambrian Period was followed by the Ordovician Period; the Cambrian is divided into ten ages. Only three series and six stages are named and have a GSSP; because the international stratigraphic subdivision is not yet complete, many local subdivisions are still used. In some of these subdivisions the Cambrian is divided into three series with locally differing names – the Early Cambrian, Middle Cambrian and Furongian. Rocks of these epochs are referred to as belonging to Upper Cambrian. Trilobite zones allow biostratigraphic correlation in the Cambrian; each of the local series is divided into several stages. The Cambrian is divided into several regional faunal stages of which the Russian-Kazakhian system is most used in international parlance: *Most Russian paleontologists define the lower boundary of the Cambrian at the base of the Tommotian Stage, characterized by diversification and global distribution of organisms with mineral skeletons and the appearance of the first Archaeocyath bioherms.
The International Commission on Stratigraphy list the Cambrian period as beginning at 541 million years ago and ending at 485.4 million years ago. The lower boundary of the Cambrian was held to represent the first appearance of complex life, represented by trilobites; the recognition of small shelly fossils before the first trilobites, Ediacara biota earlier, led to calls for a more defined base to the Cambrian period. After decades of careful consideration, a continuous sedimentary sequence at Fortune Head, Newfoundland was settled upon as a formal base of the Cambrian period, to be correlated worldwide by the earliest appearance of Treptichnus pedum. Discovery of this fossil a few metres below the GSSP led to the refinement of this statement, it is the T. pedum ichnofossil assemblage, now formally used to correlate the base of the Cambrian. This formal designation allowed radiometric dates to be obtained from samples across the globe that corresponded to the base of the Cambrian. Early dates of 570 million years ago gained favour, though the methods used to obtain this number are now considered to be unsuitable and inaccurate.
A more precise date using modern radiometric dating yield a date of 541 ± 0.3 million years ago. The ash horizon in Oman from which this date was recovered corresponds to a marked fall in the abundance of carbon-13 that correlates to equivalent excursions elsewhere in the world, to the disappearance of distinctive Ediacaran fossils. There are arguments that the dated horizon in Oman does not correspond to the Ediacaran-Cambrian boundary, but represents a facies change from marine to evaporite-dominated strata — which w
A liana is any of various long-stemmed, woody vines that are rooted in the soil at ground level and use trees, as well as other means of vertical support, to climb up to the canopy to get access to well-lit areas of the forest. Lianas are characteristic of tropical moist deciduous forests, but may be found in temperate rainforests. There are temperate lianas, for example the members of the Clematis or Vitis genera. Lianas can form bridges amidst the forest canopy, providing arboreal animals with paths across the forest; these bridges can protect weaker trees from strong winds. Lianas compete with forest trees for sunlight and nutrients from the soil. Forests without lianas grow 150% more fruit; the term "liana" is not a taxonomic grouping, but rather a description of the way the plant grows – much like "tree" or "shrub". Lianas may be found in many different plant families. One way of distinguishing lianas from trees and shrubs is based on the stiffness the Young's modulus of various parts of the stem.
Trees and shrubs have young twigs and smaller branches which are quite flexible and older growth such as trunks and large branches which are stiffer. A liana has stiff young growths and older, more flexible growth at the base of the stem. Described genera containing liana species include: Gnetophyta Gnetum spp. Acanthaceae Mendoncia spp. Thunbergia spp. e.g. T. grandiflora, T. mysorensisAncistrocladaceae Ancistrocladus spp. Annonaceae Artabotrys spp. Fissistigma spp. Uvaria spp. Apocynaceae Odontadenia spp. Strophanthus – several spp. including S. sarmentosusArecaceae Calamoideae – rattans: several genera including: Calamus spp. Daemonorops spp. Araceae Pothos spp. Aristolochiaceae Aristolochia spp. Bignoniaceae Anemopaegma spp. Capparaceae Capparis spp. Connaraceae Connarus spp. Dilleniaceae Doliocarpus spp. Dioscoreaceae Dioscorea spp.: the yam family Fabaceae: not leguminous vines are well represented: – Caesalpinioideae Acacia some spp.: e.g. A. concinna "cat's claw" lianas including: Hultholia mimosoides Mezoneuron spp.
Entada spp. Pterolobium spp.– Cercidoideae Lasiobema and Phanera spp.: "monkey ladders" or "snake climbers"– Faboideae Dalbergia armata: of subtropical Africa Derris spp. Machaerium spp. Mucuna spp. Strongylodon spp. Flagellariaceae Flagellaria indicaLoganiaceae Strychnos spp. e.g. S. axillarisNepenthaceae Nepenthes spp. Oleaceae Jasminum spp. Polygalaceae Moutabea: M. aculeataSapindaceae Paullinia spp. Rhamnaceae Ventilago spp. Ziziphus spp. Rubiaceae Uncaria spp. Rutaceae Toddalia asiaticaSchlegeliaceae Schlegelia spp. Smilacaceae Smilax spp. Vitaceae Ampelopsis spp. Cissus spp. "water vines" Parthenocissus spp. Tetrastigma spp. Vitis spp. Lianas compete intensely with trees reducing tree growth and tree reproduction increasing tree mortality, preventing tree seedlings from establishing, altering the course of regeneration in forests, affecting tree population growth rates. Lianas provide access routes in the forest canopy for many arboreal animals, including ants and many other invertebrates, rodents, sloths and lemurs.
For example, in the Eastern tropical forests of Madagascar, many lemurs achieve higher mobility from the web of lianas draped amongst the vertical tree species. Many lemurs prefer trees with lianas for their roost sites. Lianas provide support for trees when strong winds blow. However, they may be destructive in that when one tree falls, the connections made by the lianas may cause many other trees to fall; as noted by Charles Darwin, because lianas are supported by other plants, they may conserve resources that other plants must allocate to the development of structure and use them instead for growth and reproduction. In general, lianas are detrimental to the trees. Growth rates are lower for trees with lianas. Lianas make the canopy of trees more accessible to animals which eat leaves; because of these negative effects, trees which remain free of lianas are at an advantage. The New Student's Reference Work. 1914