The roots of grass plants can take on a rich brownish tinge.
These roots are a special part of the plant and they have a special chemical in them that keeps them moist.
It’s called a root exudate, and it’s also a compound that helps the plant stay alive in drought conditions.
The plants life has a long history of surviving drought conditions in India and Pakistan.
They can survive in extreme dry conditions for up to 30 days.
And for the last 2,000 years, grasses roots have been a source of food for humans and animals.
Now, the roots of the grass plant are being lost.
A lot of the food crops that grasses depend on for their survival are being destroyed in the drought conditions that are being experienced in India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.
Dr. Rupinder Singh, a senior scientist at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) in Pune, says the root exude is a key ingredient for the life of grasses.
“In the early days, when the grass was young, the root had an oxygen-rich substance.
It was made up of calcium and magnesium.
As it got older, the calcium carbonate in the root material changed into the hydrogen ion which causes the roots to lose some of its oxygen.
When it gets dry, that hydrogen ion comes back and the plant dies,” Singh told NDTV.
In the past, there have been studies done to find out how this chemical plays out.
They found that it’s not only the oxygen that changes, but also the chemistry of the water that does it.
“If the plant is growing in water that is acidic, the carbonate ions in the plant can break down the calcium and the carbon dioxide that is stored in the roots,” Singh said.
Singh also pointed out that the plants roots also help the plant survive when the soil becomes too salty, and also when the air gets too humid.
This chemical, called root exuda, has been in use for centuries and the roots can last up to 20 years.
But over the past few years, the Indian government has been moving to revive the roots.
“The root exudes a special substance called the ‘root salt’, which helps the roots keep moisture.
But now that it has been introduced to the field, it is being lost because the water quality in the field has not improved and we are losing the ability of the plants to recover,” Singh explained.
Singh added that the root salt is now being replaced by something called the “root extractor”, which extracts the carbon and hydrogen ions from the plant.
“Now, we are not talking about just a few plants, but the whole plant,” Singh added.
In fact, the soil of the field is being changed in order to remove the root extractor.
Singh said that it is important for farmers to understand the role that the roots play in grass production, and that this is something that should be considered in the agricultural strategy of a country like India.
“It is important that we take the importance of the roots very seriously and take care of them, because they are a source for the crops that we are farming,” Singh concluded.