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WildFilmHistory » Home » Films » The Private Life of Plants: Growing

The Private Life of Plants: Growing  (1995)

Filming the titan arum for The Private Life of Plants

Private Life of Plants: Growing is an intriguing insight into how plants gather their sustenance, time-lapse photography revealing the fight new leaves face for a place in the sun, and the ingenious methods employed to ward off animal attacks. Cheese plants scale the nearest tree to bask in sunlight, mimosa folds up on touch, and camouflage, spines and poison are just a few of the defence mechanisms regularly put to use.

The second of six episodes in David Attenborough's specialised series, The Private Life of Plants: Growing provides a unique insight into the living 'factories' that are leaves. In the search for water, sycamore trees silently pump four hundred and fifty litres of water up their trunk each hour, roots probe incredible distances beneath the ground and leaves have specially designed 'gutters' that prevent clogging when excessive rains arrive.

After initial doubts over public acceptance of a series focusing solely on botany, The Private Life of Plants is credited with revolutionising the nation's perception of flora. Receiving a Panda Award for Cinematography at Wildscreen 1996, BBC Natural History Unit  producer Mike Salisbury enlisted the talents of a whole host of wildlife cameramen, including the renowned photographers Hugh Miles, Mike deGruy and Steve Downer. Detailing a fascinating array of species, from the carnivorous trumpet pitcher in Borneo to the inner workings of a common begonia, Growing grants a fascinating insight into a world invisible to the human eye.

Copyright holder

Copyright Holder: BBC - Natural History Unit
Address: c/o BBC Motion Gallery
Room E251
Woodlands
80 Wood Lane
London
W12 0TT
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 8433 2861 / 2
Email: motiongallery.uk@bbc.co.uk
Website: http://www.bbcmotiongallery.com

Film credits

Additional Photography: Rod Clarke
Additional Photography: Trevor de Kock
Additional Photography: Steve Downer
Additional Photography: Bill Duyck
Additional Photography: Geoff Gartside
Additional Photography: Peter Smithson
Assistant Producer: Neil P. Lucas
Dubbing Editor: Lucy Rutherford
Dubbing Mixer: Peter Hicks
Executive Producer: Mike Salisbury
Film Editor: Jo Payne
Graphic Design: Mick Connaire
Graphic Design: 422 Videographic design
Music: Richard Grassby-Lewis
Photography: Richard Kirby
Photography: Tim Shepherd
Photography: Neil Bromhall
Photography: Mike deGruy
Photography: Richard Ganniclifft
Photography: Hugh Miles
Photography: Michael Pitts
Photography: Gavin Thurston
Presenter: David Attenborough
Producer: Mike Salisbury
Production Assistant: Pamela Jackson
Production Assistant: Lisa Pearce
Production Organisation: BBC - Natural History Unit
Production Organisation: TBS Productions, Inc.
Researcher: Mark Flowers
Sound Recordist: Trevor Gosling
Unit Manager: Cynthia Connolly
VT (video tape) Editor: Ian Haynes

Related links

The Private Life of Plants: Travelling (1995)
David Attenborough
Hugh Miles
Mike deGruy
Mike Salisbury
Clips
The beginning of the battle for survival
The beginning of the battle for survival
Mimicry in the plant kingdom
Mimicry in the plant kingdom
Pumping 100 gallons of water per hour uphill
Pumping 100 gallons of water per hour up...
Growth of a deadly trap
Growth of a deadly trap
Stills
Richard Kirby filming high in the rainforest for The Private Life of Plants
Richard Kirby filming high in the rainforest...