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Re: O2 respiration

>> I think it's more likely a response to needing more O2 for >>root 
>> respiration.
>> Much like Cypress knees in swamps or Mangrove roots' allowing >>O2 for
>> respiration. A number of wetland plants do this.
>> There's no source of O2 down in the wetland substrates.

>I'm sorry, Tom, but I didn't even take high school chemistry!  >As the 
>original post said, lots of this stuff just goes w-a-y over my >head.  I
>understand what "02 for root respiration means.  Could you >break that down 
>for this aquatic plant illiterate -- please?

Well most life, not all, uses aerobic respiration which is very efficicent energy wise.  
No O2, no aerobic respiration and the plant does not have much energy or growth as result. 

When flooding occurs, many plants simply die since this greatly reduces their O2 access(terrestrial plants have plenty of air O2), but some are able to import O2 to their roots via "Knees", emersed growth, floating leaves, very slow growth etc. All the aquatic plants do this in some form. They make starch and sucrose and then they need to burn(oxidize)these products just like we do when we eat. We don't make starch like plants but we still use respiration like they do.
Gotta breath. It's a pretty efficient method of getting lots of energy.

If your muscles run out of O2 and go anaerobic, you'll make lactic acid(and you have sore muscles) through fermentation andanother form is when beer and wine makers use yeast and force it under anaerobic conditions to make ethanol and CO2 gas like DIY CO2 users.
But this process is slower yield much less energy than aerobic respiration would(via the Kreb's cycle or I prefer to call it the TCA cycle).

If you take one suger unit and you get only 2 units of energy out it via fermentation and if you get 36/38 units from aerobic respiration you can see the dramatic difference in the processes.
That's about as basic as I'm going to give it to you unless you want to snuggle up to a bio book and learn more. 

Tom Barr