At what scale do we exist asymmetrically?
The liana has asymmetry at a scale that affords its own anchoring:
“Whereas trees all tend to be the same shape, lianas are all over the place,” said Stefan Schnitzer, a botanist at Marquette University who was not involved in the study.
These strange stem variations give the vines an advantage. “Being asymmetrical helps you to anchor in the trees you’re growing on,” said Marcelo Rodrigo Pace, a botanist at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and a co-author of the study. “These lianas also have tendrils that let them grab pieces of stems and leaves and start growing.”
Where, when and how are we anchored?