Landscaping & Nursery Information for Home Gardeners


Respiration is the opposite of photosynthesis. Sugar and oxygen are broken down into carbon dioxide and water. If respiration is higher than photosynthesis, a plant doesn't grow or mature.

Respiration usually occurs during the night when light is not present, though respiration can occur during the day in some plants, particularly some grasses. Respiration increases as temperatures increase.

It is because respiration uses oxygen that plants and flowers are not encouraged in hospital intensive care wards.

Respiration is also a direct cause why tomatoes fail to ripen during hot, summer days. Sugars are not allowed to accumulate as respiration uses them up just as fast as they are produced.

See: Photosynthesis
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