I am standing here with Ficus religiosa, but does it release Oxygen at night?😮
Plants take in carbon dioxide (CO2) and release oxygen (O2) during day time when they undergo the process of photosynthesis and they take in O2 and release CO2 during night as a result of respiration.
There are 3 photosynthesis pathways adapted by plants for carbon fixation namely C3 pathway (Calvin cycle), C4 pathway and CAM pathway (Crassulacean Acid Metabolism). C3 and C4 are common among land plants and among these two, C3 is the most common.
CAM pathway can be seen in desert plants and epiphytes (i.e. plants that live on other plants). Unlike C3 and C4 plants, these plants keep their stomata closed during day and open it during night for fix CO2 in the form of malate and releases O2. They do it so, to prevent loss of water due to sunlight. During the day, they breakdown the malate and use the released CO2 through Kalvin cycle to produce sugars, similar to C3 plants. So, CAM plants releases oxygen during night.
Peepal tree is a hemi-epiphyte in its native habitat i.e. the seeds germinate and grow as an epiphyte on other trees and then when the host-tree dies, they establish themselves in the soil. When they live as an epiphyte, they use CAM pathway to produce carbohydrates and when they live on soil, they switch to C3 type photosynthesis. So, a Peepal tree can also release oxygen during the night depending on whether it is an epiphyte or not.
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