CAM Plant

Crassulacean acid metabolism is a carbon fixation pathway in which plants that don’t receive much water perform photosynthesis. CAM plants are typically found in arid and warm climates. The waxy cuticle covers most of a plant to help prevent water loss. But the exchange of gasses to carry out photosynthesis must also occur, so plants have tiny pores on their cuticle called stomata. Usually the stomata are open during the day and closed during the night, however, in CAM plants, the stomata are open during the night (when it’s cooler there is no sun) while the stomata are closed during the day (due to the hot temperatures). CAM plants store up on carbon dioxide molecules during the night and perform photosynthesis with these molecule during the day. This prevents evapotranspiration, or the loss of water. Some examples of CAM plants are various kinds of cacti, aloe, and orchids.

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