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Plants Forced To Evolve By Urban Landscapes

<p>A team of researchers has shown that in urban landscapes -- such as in the cracks of sidewalks -- plant species must evolve their reproduction habits to stay alive.</p>
March 8, 2008, 7am PST | Nate Berg
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"As concrete slabs chop up more and more of our urban landscapes, plants are forced to evolve in ways that may not benefit them in the long run, a new study suggests."

"As a plant or any organism's habitat becomes fragmented - whether by intervening sidewalks and roads in cities or by logging in rain forests - it can be cut off from other members of its species, making reproduction more difficult."

"Ecologists at the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) in France studied how a weed, Crepis sancta, changed its reproductive strategy when faced with ever-increasing amounts of concrete sidewalks."

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Published on Tuesday, March 4, 2008 in MSNBC
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