Celebrating Plants together: International Fascination of Plants Day

December 13, 2019

Fascination of Plants Day

On 18 May 2019, the International Fascination of Plants Day was organised for the fifth time under the umbrella of the European Plant Science Organisation (EPSO).

862 events in 51 countries worldwide took place in 2019 with the aim of drawing general public’s attention to plants and highlighting the importance for sustainable production of nutritious food and non-food products such as paper, timber, chemicals, energy, and pharmaceuticals, as well as horticulture and forestry. The events were hosted in various locations from botanical gardens and national parks to libraries and museums.

Some of the success stories include:

  • Sweden: a diversity of hand-on activities on hidden colours in plants, microalgae, plant insets, and many others at Kafé Fika at Väven in Umeå;
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina: “Be a scientist for a day” event at Laboratory for Plant Physiology, The Faculty of Science, University of Sarajevo, which started with a visit to the plant cloning lab, where participants could see all stages of plant cloning. During hands-on activities everyone could extract anthocyanins from plant material to investigate plant colours and test how they change colour in relation to pH;
  • France: presentation of an innovative prototype called TRAP’nd SNIFF at FLAV LAB Toulouse, National Polytechnic Institute of Toulouse. The prototype allows concentration of emitted odorant volatiles from various typical flowers of Occitania lily. Trapped volatiles are then chemically analysed and used for nature-identical fragrances;
  • Lebanon: guided tour to explore the richness of plant diversity at the main campus of the Notre Dame University-Louaize. Students were introduced to the native and cultivated trees, shrub, vines, annuals, and perennials, with emphasis on identification and characteristics of plant families;
  • Ireland: Along with lots of fascinating talks and tours, an event called “All things buzzing and beautiful: gardening for pollinators” was held at the Waterford Institute of Technology, where families learned about flower anatomy through seeing how pollinators tend to favour plants in which their mouthparts can easily fit. Families also learned why pollination services are so important for plant and pollinator conservation.

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