Researchers have discovered the earliest flowering plants, and they are very different from what they previously thought of blooming flowers. Montsechia vidalii the plant that is being thought as the earliest flowering plant is an aquatic plant from around 130 million years ago. This questions our assumptions about the evolutionary history of blooming plants, as well as their role/contribution in the evolution of other plant and animal life, said David Dilcher, lead author of the study from Indiana University Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences.
When Montsechia vidalii was first discovered it was believed to be a flowerless plant. It was discovered in a limestone deposit in the Iberian Ranges of Spain over 100 years ago, but on further evaluating the fossilized remains the team of researchers found enough evidence to confirm that it was a flowering plant. However, the flower of the plant doesn’t look like what one might expect, as it doesn’t posses any obvious ‘flower parts’ like petals, or nectar-producing structure for attracting insects. The plant bears a single seed, which is borne upside down.
*Ceratophyllum *an aquatic flowering plant is considered to be the modern descendant of *Montsechia. *Researchers are now trying to understand more about the relationship between these two. Dilcher said, *“there’s still much to be discovered about how a few early species of seed bearing plans eventually gave rise to the enormous, and beautiful, variety of flowers that now populate nearly every environment on Earth”. *