Plants are some of the most important organisms on earth. They perform a multitude of services that keep ecosystem functioning. Plants provide us with food, medicine, and they perform photosynthesis which converts carbon dioxide into oxygen and in so doing remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, provide us with many everyday products and are very beautiful to look at. (Morgan 2009)
Plants provide us with energy through food
Food provides humans with energy that allows us to carry out all of our daily activities. All the energy used to accomplish these movements comes from the sun’s energy that is trapped by plants. All of our food in some way or another comes from plants. Plants are truly the basis of the food chain.
It begins with the sun’s rays sending energy to the earth. Animals cannot use energy in this form. It gives us warmth and light, but it doesn’t directly give us energy to live, move and grow. That is where plants and photosynthesis comes in. Plants use water, carbon dioxide, and energy from the sun to make glucose and oxygen. Then they burn the sugar to grow. Therefore, when we eat, we are actually eating that trapped energy from the sun, in the form of sugar or starch, which was produced by the plant during photosynthesis. Then when we eat we have energy to move and grow. Not in all instances the transfer of energy is direct. For example, a steak isn’t a plant but it comes from cows, which feed on plants. So still we are receiving energy from plants. So the plant, and its ability to do photosynthesis, is the link between the sun’s energy and the survival of all animals.
Plants for healing
The use of herbs as medicine and as aids to health is an ancient African tradition. Since prehistoric times, plants have been used for their healing properties. Some were successful. Ancient Egyptians, for example, chewed bark to relieve fever and headaches. Thousands of years later, scientists discovered that the bark contains...