Why do tropical plants have such big leaves?

Leaf size and shape is incredibly important to plants, as it helps them cope with the environments in which they live. We’ve long known that plants in the tropics have larger leaves than those in cooler climes (see image above of one of the world’s biggest leaves from tropical Borneo – the Giant elephant ear plant), but the reason for this has been hotly debated. We now think we know why…

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