Now this has got me all tied up in knots. My pole beans always g
around the pole counter-clockwise (when viewed from the top down).
have tried to force them to go clockwise but they simply reverse and g
back to counter-clockwise. What I'm wondering is this: in the souther
hemisphere, do they go clockwise? Do we have any members in Australi
or New Zealand who raise pole beans? (when they can find time fro
trying to kill themselves hang gliding or bunjee jumping!
On 8/9/07 9:42 AM, in article email@example.com, "Ken
Your description would be more precise if you related it to right or left
hand helices (screw thread. I think that you are describing a right hand
thread. As the plant grows upward, the leading edge goes.
I think that the helix is primarily genetic. Like trees, they beans are
likely to be both left and right handed with one form predominating. I doubt
that mechanical forces are at work. If they were, it would be a coriolis
force. Small as that force is, the plant would be deflected in the opposite
direction from what you observe. It all depends upon the handedness of the
helix. That would account for a difference in between Northern and Southern
hemispheres. Coriolis force in the Northern hemisphere deflects moving
things to the right. That is what causes clockwise motion of air around high
pressure areas in the atmosphere.
I was thinking that the plant might be growing fast enough so that the
apparent motion of the sun could affect the direction of growth. That would
also account for North-South differences. Again, your description indicates
the wrong direction.
The PC conservative does not believe in evolution but likes to see natural
selection proceed. The PC liberal believes in evolution but will do almost
Inquiring minds want to know!
(Oh, and at the risk of contaminating a perfectly good discussion with
facts, "the vast majority of twining vines wind around a support in a
right-handed direction, about 10% twine in a left-handed direction,
and a very few are able to twine in both directions."
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