Popular Science

Tomatoes and subway systems might have something in common

They're both just trying to get the biggest bang for their buck.
tomato plant

Just another morning commute.

When people design transportation systems, they are usually trying to find the sweet spot where they can get people to their final destinations as quickly as possible, while minimizing the cost of building the infrastructure. It may not always work (this summer's unfolding New York City subway debacle is a prime example), but it turns out that plants take a similar approach.

A published today in investigates how balance cost and performance to develop their complex, branched structures. But instead of

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