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Photosynthesis

Why are plants green?

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2014-04-25 14:46:38
2014-04-25 14:46:38
AnswerPlants appear green because their cells contain chloroplasts, which contains chlorophyll ,then gives plants green pigment...in order to survive. Chlorophyll reflects green and yellow while it absorbs other lights for energy (red, orange, blue, and violet).

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I think the question was more "why are plants green and not some other colour" rather than "why do I see plants as green". The real answer to the question would then be nobody really knows. Technically because the sun emits yellow rays, plants would most benefit from being purple. in ancient times there were purple photosynthetic bacterium that photosynthesized with retinal, a chemical in your eyes, so most scientist are confused by this.

Plants are green because they have the substances that are not necessarily green called chloroplasts. Because of this pigment the plant can absorb an assortment of colors, so basically plants can absorb almost every color on the visible light spectrum except green. That is why we perceive plants to be green because their pigment does not allow them to absorb this color

Chlorophyll, (photosystem II and photosystem I), are based on the element Magnesium, and the structure is analogous to hemoglobin in animals which is based on iron. Iron compounds don't absorb red light, so you see red. Magnesium based compounds don't absorb the middle spectrum of visible light, so you see green. reds which are longer wavelength and blues which are shorter wavelength are absorbed in plants for energy to drive metabolic processes, and that energy turns water and carbon dioxide into carbohydrates. So plants physically have no choice but to be green, it was not a selection of evolution. Cloroplasts are endosymbiotic structures, they have two membranes and their own prokaryotic DNA...they closely resemble cyanobacteria that did develop upward of 2 billion years before plants in a high carbon dioxide atmosphere. That suggests that as carbon dioxide levels fell that the structure of a plant was more successful for this phototrophic organism to hide from the oxygen. So, that's where the chlorophyll came from in plants, and how come plants are green.

AnswerPlants are green because archaea are purple. Archaea came first, photosynthesizing using purple pigment rhodopsin. Plants evolved green pigment chlorophyll so they could use the leftover light that wasn't being used by archaea. After the Earth cooled, the archaea could not survive as well, but the plants could, so the green plants became the most popular form of life.
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