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◄\๏The Desert๏/►

The desert is very dry and often hot. Annual rainfall averages less than 10 inches per year, and that rain often comes all at the same time. The rest of the year is very dry. There is a lot of direct sunlight shining on the plants. The soil is often sandy or rocky and unable to hold much water. Winds are often strong, and dry out plants. Plants are exposed to extreme temperatures and drought conditions. Plants must cope with extensive water loss.
Desert Plant Adaptations
*. Some plants, called succulents, storewater in their stems or leaves;
*. Some plants have no leaves or smallseasonal leaves that only grow after it rains. The lack of leaves helps reduce water loss during photosynthesis. Leafless plants conduct photosynthesis in their green stems.
*. Long root systems spread out wide or go deep into the ground to absorb water;
*. Some plants have a short life cycle, germinating in response to rain, growing, flowering, and dying within one year. These plants can evade drought.
*. Leaves with hair help shade the plant, reducing water loss. Other plants have leaves that turn throughout the day to expose a minimum surface area to the heat.
*. Spines to discourage animals from eating plants for water;
*. Waxy coating on stems and leaves help reduce water loss.
*. Flowers that open at night lure pollinators who are more likely to be active during the cooler night.
*. Slower growing requires less energy. The plants don't have to make as much food and therefore do not lose as much water.


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