Long-lost notes by Isaac Newton explained plants' water dynamic 200 years before botanists did

Sir Isaac Newton
(Image credit: Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

A previously unread page of Isaac Newton's undergraduate notes includes an explanation on plant function. Apparently, Newton knew how plants defied gravity, moving water from roots to leaves, 200 years before botanists figured it out.

David Beerling of the University of Sheffield has reviewed Newton's notes in the journal Nature Plants. In Newton's notes, he explains what would eventually be known as transpiration, when water is absorbed through a plant's roots and is transported through the stem before evaporating. Newton already understood how plants' pores stretched and plants grew long before the rest of the scientific world.

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