Beautification of Plant Parts through Fibonacci Numbers

Do you wonder why plants are so stunning? Is there a certain “proof” on how such plants achieved its pleasant physical appearance? There are so many plants possessing  “behaved” surfaces turning to spiral-like looks. Speaking of spiral, I know a concept that will produce that spiral and which applies to other plants with those spiral-like looks.

From my Advanced Calculus class, we studied sequences of numbers and that include Fibonacci Sequence, which generates Fibonacci Numbers. Historically, it is named after Leonardo Fibonacci who was puzzled and eventually experimented on the breeding process of rabbits. With the assumptions that 1.) rabbits never die and 2.) every month each adult pair produces a mixed pair of baby rabbits who mature the next month, he then realized that the total number of pairs of rabbits (adult+baby) in a particular month is the sum of the total pairs of rabbits in the previous two months. So, Fibonacci numbers consist of the numbers 1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,…

Now, those plants possessing spiral-looks have Fibonacci numbers in it. For example, Romanesque cauliflower is, for me, the best example of a plant exhibiting Fibonacci numbers. Fibonacci spiral is evident on each of its fruitlet.

fibronacci in nature
Picture of a Romanesque Cauliflower. Red / Flickr.

 

Another example of a plant with Fibonacci spiral is the aloe plant. Notice how its leaves spiral outward.

fibonacci in nature
Spiral within an aloe plant. brewbooks / Flickr.

For my last example, the ubiquitous sunflower possess Fibonacci numbers through its seeds. Notice the spiral in its florets.

fibonacci in nature
Photo of a sunflower. Credit to The Museum Of Play.

It is exciting to see plants having this kind of pattern for its beautification. However, not all “scenic” plants possess Fibonacci numbers. We can only ensure that plants having these Fibonacci numbers were truly amazing and worth-seeing for!

For more information, check out:

    1. https://plus.maths.org/content/life-and-numbers-fibonacci
    2. https://www.niftyhomestead.com/blog/fibonacci-sequence-in-nature/
    3. http://www.maths.surrey.ac.uk/hosted-sites/R.Knott/Fibonacci/fib.html
    4. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1002007108003419

Photos taken from:

  1. http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utente:Morgoth92 – Questa immagine l’ho scattata con la mia macchina fotografica digitale., CC BY 2.0 it, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1088817
  2. https://www.flickr.com/photos/windiain/2938364376/
  3. https://www.flickr.com/photos/brewbooks/184343329/
  4. http://www.museumofplay.org/blog/play-stuff/2012/01/thank-you-fibonacci-for-playing-with-numbers/
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