March 3, 2017 | David F. Coppedge

Plants Fight Darwin

Another article proves the DAM Law, as evolutionists try to make the best of a bad situation.

The DAM Law states, “any article or paper on the evolution of flowering plants will be accompanied by the phrase, ‘Darwin’s Abominable Mystery’ (DAM).” Science Daily once again proves this law, not only in the body of an article, but in the headline, “Where do flowers come from? Shedding light on Darwin’s ‘abominable mystery’.

BM-lightclickThe mystery that is the origin of flowering plants has been partially solved thanks to a team of scientists. Their discovery sheds light on a question that much intrigued Darwin: the appearance of a structure as complex as the flower over the course of evolution.

Darwin long pondered the origin and rapid diversification of flowering plants, describing them as an “abominable mystery.” In comparison with gymnosperms, which possess rather rudimentary male and female cones (like the pine cone), flowering plants present several innovations: the flower contains the male organs (stamens) and the female organs (pistil), surrounded by petals and sepals, while the ovules, instead of being naked, are protected within the pistil.

How was nature able to invent the flower, a structure so different from that of cones?

A French team “has just provided part of the answer,” we are told. Which part of the answer—and how big a part—are key issues. These evolutionists feel bold enough to use an exclamation point.

To do so, the researchers studied a rather original gymnosperm called Welwitschia mirabilis. This plant, which can live for more than a millennium, grows in the extreme conditions of the deserts of Namibia and Angola, and, like other gymnosperms, possesses separate male and female cones. What is exceptional is that the male cones possess a few sterile ovules and nectar, which indicates a failed attempt to invent the bisexual flower. Yet, in this plant (as well as in certain conifers), the researchers found genes similar to those responsible for the formation of flowers, and which are organized according to the same hierarchy (with the activation of one gene activating the next gene, and so on)!

The fact that a similar gene cascade has been found in flowering plants and their gymnosperm cousins indicates that this is inherited from their common ancestor. This mechanism did not have to be invented at the time of the origins of the flower: it was simply inherited and reused by the plant, a process that is often at work in evolution.

We have been told that this desert plant (1) has male cones with sterile ovules and nectar, (2) has genes “similar to those” for the formation of flowers, and (3) the genes are organized according to a cascading hierarchy. Impressive as this sounds, the explanation raises a dozen questions:

  1. What is the relationship of Welwitschia to other gymnosperms? Answer: it is a sole member of its own genus and family.
  2. Is Welsitschia a true gymnosperm? It is so unique, its classification as a gymnosperm [“naked seed”] seems somewhat arbitrary. Wikipedia says, “Most recent systems place Welwitschia mirabilis in its own family Welwitschiaceae in the gymnosperm order Gnetales.” The word ‘most’ suggests that some botanists or taxonomists disagree, opening the possibility that the plant is, instead, a specialized angiosperm.
  3. Why is Welwitschia still the same today if it evolved from a common ancestor? Some call it a “living fossil,” unchanged since its supposed evolution from the mythical ancestor.
  4. Was the common ancestor identified? None mentioned.
  5. Is there any evidence that the first flowering plants borrowed Welwitschia’s traits? None mentioned.
  6. Why would a plant retain “a failed attempt to invent the bisexual flower” but succeed at living with that failure for 1,000 years or more at a time, much longer than true flowering plants?
  7. Can a plant “invent” anything?
  8. If the angiosperms “inherited and reused” a “mechanism” from Welwitschia, why did Welwitschia not improve on the mechanism itself over supposed millions of years of evolution?
  9. Why did all the angiosperms (true flowering plants) leapfrog past Welwitschia and leave it growing in a couple of arid parts of Africa?
  10. Some angiosperms are dioecious, too (possessing separate male and female flowers), so why is that diagnostic of evolution?
  11. Does the French team explain the origin of flowering plants, or have they just told another Darwinian just-so story?
  12. Have the French scientists solved Darwin’s Abominable Mystery? or have they instead illustrated the commutative property of the DAM Law, i.e., the Mystery’s Abominable Darwin?

For relief from evolutionary confabulation, let’s look at some real living angiosperms.

Buttercups focus light to heat their flowers and attract insects (New Scientist). Those lovely yellow petals on buttercups may serve two unique functions, this article says. As miniature parabolic reflectors, they provide heat for the plants and also create light beams for pollinators to follow. Insects apparently like the warmth of the flowers.

Amazing FactsButtercups get their bright colour from yellow pigments in the petals’ surface layer. But the petals’ shiny gloss is due to the double layer of air just beneath the surface. This reflectivity is what turns people’s chins yellow when they hold a flower underneath.

New research on why plant tissues have a sense of direction (Phys.org). ‘Morphogenesis’ is one of those vacuous scientific jargon words that means nothing without a theory to explain ‘the origin of form.’ How do the complex shapes of leaves and flowers arise from a ball of cells? Botanists at the John Innes Centre of Norwich investigated how plants arrive at a preferred direction of growth.

One of the prevailing theories of how complex plant shapes develop, upon which this new research builds, is the theory of ’tissue conflict resolution’. At the heart of shape development are internal differences in how tissue regions grow, and it is the resolution of these conflicts that produces shapes. These tissue conflicts are not contentious, but precisely coordinated, with their resolution leading to a particular flower or leaf shape.

Such a theory describes but does not explain. Why would a conflict arise? How is it coordinated? Where is the plan that leads to the result? The reader looks in vain for answers to those points, yet is told that “The precise shape of these organs has been modified over millions of years of evolution in relation to specific functions such as attracting pollinators or catching sunlight.” Evolution, though is blind. It’s not trying to attract pollinators. It’s not trying to catch sunlight. It cannot invent genes to do these things. Anything that works must occur by accident (the Stuff Happens Law). At best, the researchers have taken baby steps. “This research moves us one step closer to understanding how genes can influence the remarkably intricate and beautiful plant shapes we see all around us.”

Ocean meadows scrub seawater of harmful bacteria (Nature). “Seagrasses keep waterborne pathogens in check, potentially benefiting people and coral reefs,” Jason Bittel tells us. That’s nice to know, but leaves us wondering how coral reefs survived pathogens for hundreds of millions of Darwin Years before seagrasses evolved. The paper in Science is silent about that. But from a design perspective, the role of these aquatic angiosperms as cleaners makes sense:

Amazing FactsSeagrass meadows are the most widespread coastal ocean ecosystems in the world. Research now finds that these plants can reduce the load of disease-causing bacteria such as Enterococcus in the surrounding seawater by up to 50%. What’s more, coral reefs also show a 50% reduction in disease when seagrasses live nearby.

The meadows act as nurseries that shelter young animals, and provide permanent homes for creatures including fish, crabs and shrimp. The plants are also superstars when it comes to carbon sequestration. Now findings published 16 February in Science add a health-care component to the long list of ecosystem services that seagrasses provide. 

A world without flowering plants would be far different from what we know. Indeed, it’s hard to imagine how the biosphere could survive without them. Evolutionists imagine, though, that flowering plants were missing for most of earth history, only beginning their dominance within the last 150 million years (about 3% of earth’s assumed age).

Genesis relates that plants were created on the third day, right after the dry land appeared. Most likely this included gymnosperms, angiosperms, algae and fungi. Knowing the critical roles of plants in the biosphere for food, oxygen and recycling, doesn’t that make sense? God knew what he was doing as he constructed the earth to be inhabited. Remember that man’s first job was gardening. Get into the yard and exercise that role once again: it will help you appreciate design and beauty our heavenly father built into this habitat for humanity.

 

 

 

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