Math in Nature

There is Math all around us. Let’s look for Maths in Nature. Use the example of Adolf Zeisiing, a German psychologist, who found the golden ratio expressed in the arrangement of leaves and branches along the stems of plants and of veins in leaves. The number of petals in a flower consistently follows the Golden Ratio. Famous examples include the lily, which has three petals, buttercups, which have five, the chicory’s 21, the daisy’s 34, and so on. Phi appears in petals on account of the ideal packing arrangement as selected by Darwinian processes.

Phyllotaxy (arrangement of leaves on an axis or stem) is connected with the golden ratio because it involves successive leaves or petals being separated by the golden Angle. It also results in the emergence of spirals. It is sometimes stated that nautilus shells get wider in the pattern of a golden spiral, and hence are related to both phi(φ) and the Fibonacci series.

For more information refer to chapter 2 of the book From Chalk to Talk The Art of Teaching.

Published by Dr. Pramila Kudva

I am a teacher educator currently worrking as a Principal of a reputed school in North Mumbai, have more than 30 years of experience, with several publications to my credit and have authored a book -"From chalk to Talk The Art of Teaching.

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