Leaves Of Gold: Researchers Find Gold Growing On Eucalyptus Trees
Source: asianscientist.comResearchers in Australia have detected gold particles in the leaves of Eucalyptus trees, a sign that indicates the presence of deeply buried gold deposits nearby.
Traces of gold are sometimes found in soils surrounding Eucalyptus trees; however, without heavily disturbing the area and digging to great depths it is difficult to determine whether the trees are indeed located above as yet undiscovered gold resources or if the gold particles were blown there by wind.
The study, published in Nature Communications this week, may lead to a new way of locating buried gold deposits in difficult to reach locations without the need for invasive land excavation.
To identify naturally occurring gold particles in the leaves, twigs and bark of Eucalyptus trees, Melvyn Lintern and colleagues at CSIRO used a technique called X-ray imaging. Subsequent field samples and greenhouse experiments suggest that minute gold particles, at concentrations not harmful to the tree, are absorbed by the roots and transported to its extremities, such as leaves, where the highest concentrations were observed.
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