CARLOS MUNOZ-YAGUE / EURELIOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CARLOS MUNOZ-YAGUE / EURELIOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Photosynthesis in a coloured cotton plant. Digital meter clamped onto a leaf measures chlorophyll and photosynthesis in a coloured cotton plant. This study at CIRAD, a French agricultural centre, is researching plant growth and genetics of coloured cotton. The cotton plant Gossypium hirsutum has for centuries been bred for white cotton. Natural cotton, however, is coloured from cream to brown to green. Colour change is controlled by one gene. Here at CIRAD colour varieties are being bred to grow in the colder, darker French climate. Woven coloured cotton is no more expensive than dyed white cotton, and ecologically it is safer.
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