GERA­NIUM

Cosmos - - Gallery - CREDIT: SUSUMU NISHINAGA / GETTY IMAGES

Pil­lo­ried as an un­fash­ion­able house plant by some, revered as an in­dis­pen­si­ble fragrant bloom by oth­ers, the com­mon gera­nium has been chalk­ing up se­ri­ous ku­dos in re­cent times. In 2014 a Ger­man re­search team found an ex­tract of the South African gera­nium ( Pelargo­nium sidoides) had anti-hiv prop­er­ties in a cell cul­ture ex­per­i­ment. Sci­en­tists are also in­ter­ested in the gera­nium as a nat­u­ral pest con­trol – its leaves can paral­yse the Ja­panese bee­tle. The gera­nium’s pop­u­lar­ity has also led sci­en­tists to tar­get its pollen; in 2012 a strain was ge­net­i­cally mod­i­fied to pro­duce no pollen, cre­at­ing an al­lergy-free plant safe for trans­genic ex­per­i­men­ta­tion with­out prop­a­ga­tion risk.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.