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Does Sea-Water Kill Seeds?

Darwin experimented with the viability of seeds after they had been submerged in seawater in order to test the idea that land bridges were required for plant migration. In the larger sense, were organic beings, found in more than one place on Earth, created only once, and then spread to different locations? Or were they created several times, in each different location? Immersing different types of vegetable seeds in seawater for increasing lengths of time, he found that many could germinate after immersions lasting 28 days or longer. Thus, he concluded that transport by ocean currents could disperse plants quite widely, and that multiple creations were not necessary.

Credits: From The Collected Papers of Charles Darwin, Vol. 1, Paul H. Barrett, Editor. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 1977, pp. 255-258.

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The Age of Darwin

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