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9 years ago

Flowering Plants Might Have Originated 100 Million Years Before Previous Estimates

Geo Beats
Geo Beats
Plants that grow flowers to reproduce are the largest and most diverse kind of seed producing plants that grow on land. Based on data from fossilized pollen grains, researchers from Switzerland and Germany found six different kinds of pollen from plants that may have been flowering 100 million years prior to what other research has shown.


Plants that use flowers to aid reproduction are the largest and most diverse kind of seed producing plants on land.
Researchers from Switzerland and Germany have found six different kinds of fossilized pollen that may have been from plants flowering 100 million years earlier than what other research has shown.

In the fossil record, the majority of pollen from flowers starts appearing in the Early Cretaceous period about 140 million years ago, but this new evidence predates that by around 100 million years in the Middle Triassic period.

The discovery also means that this period of approximately 100 million years has no fossil record of pollen from flowering plants.

Professor Peter Hochuli from the University of Zurich explained the new discovery by saying: “I think part of it is a gap in the observation, one finds what is already known. Without my experience… I think I would have missed the few tiny grains.”

The fossil samples containing the pollen were taken from the Barents Sea area off the coast of Norway and Russia, and in Switzerland.

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