Tuesday, November 17, 6:30 pm – Reanimating Extinct Plants

Science for the Public presents Dr. Jonathan P. Wilson, California Institute of Technology, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, at the Boston Public Library on Boylston Street in a free lecture on Tuesday, November 17 beginning at 6:30 pm.

A nature walk in New England 300 million years ago would have looked quite different from one near Boston today. Instead of forests composed of oaks, maples, and pines, the area would have been dominated by unusual extinct forms: mostly climbing ferns and seed plants under a canopy of trees that more closely resemble telephone poles than anything in a modern garden. How did these plants work?
In this talk, he will explore how recent advances in plant physiology allow paleontologists to understand, in a quantitative fashion, how extinct plants functioned. Are there fundamental physiological differences between extinct plants and living ones? What can we learn about ancient environments and ecosystems from looking at fossil plants? For more information, log on to www.cityofboston.gov.