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I had an idea of a wind tree that can create wind but it is not man-made) in a fantasy world. Then I began to think/wonder of ways it could realistically work without any magic.

So thats where I'm stuck. Hope this clears up the confusion. It's like an off category of the Anatomically Correct Series (which is how I first found this site), but instead of fictional creatures, it's a tree.

Here's my thought process on how a wind tree could exist on Earth:

Why does it need to create wind? To clean itself of dust perhaps or scare predators away from eating it seeds. From what I learned from the answers, perpetual motion is out of question so maybe it uses water pressure which it can control and blow wind out of mini blowholes. I think the seeds will be some dandelion shape so benefit from the wind.

When will it blow? I very badly want it to be 24/7 but that does not sound possible. Wind tree seems inhabitable since taking inspiration from venus flytraps, there will be lots of tiny hairs or maybe just blocking the blowholes signals to blow it off.

Weaknesses: Fire? I originally imagined it to deflect fire thats dropping from the sky.

How does it looks: like a cactus tree?

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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to WorldBuilding! I edited your question a bit as we have a "one question per question" policy. You can simply ask a new question for your naming-problem, but be aware that "How would my creation be named?" would be off-topic. Asking about general ways of naming plants on the other hand would be on-topic. The goal of StackExchange is to have a database of questions and answers that would be useful to future readers and answers that can be objectively rated as valid, good and better. If you have a moment please take the tour and visit the help center to learn more. Have fun! $\endgroup$ – Sec SE - clear Monica's name Apr 19 '18 at 12:40
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    $\begingroup$ To reach perpetual motion, you must avoid friction. To create wind, you need friction. the more wind you want, the more energy your tree should create/transform $\endgroup$ – Kepotx Apr 19 '18 at 12:45
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    $\begingroup$ Where does fire come in to the picture? Is the tree on fire? Why is the tree on fire? $\endgroup$ – nzaman Apr 19 '18 at 13:08
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    $\begingroup$ Since you've used the magic tag, why not have it just create the wind using magic? $\endgroup$ – F1Krazy Apr 19 '18 at 13:11
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    $\begingroup$ How tall is the tree? If it was tall enough you could have it be a natural Solar Updraft Tower. $\endgroup$ – AndyD273 Apr 19 '18 at 17:15
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Start with a plant that has tubular leaves, such as the gollum jade:

Gollum jade

Have it evolve so that the tubes are parallel to branches, rather than growing perpendicularly from them. Now have the tubes go:

  • Completely hollow;
  • Open at both ends;
  • Finally, add moving parts. This may sound counterintuictive for plants, but remember that mimosa (the touch sensitive one) and carnivore plants do have those.

The moving parts will push air through the tube.

Now we need to justify why the plant does that. Let's say it thrives in tropical forests, under the canopies of tall trees. It is a variant of carnivore plants... Rather than taking nutrition from insects, it takes nutrients from the dust and suspended particles in the air. The wind makes them more efficient in this gathering.

A single plant will not have much effect on the environment around her, but when thousands of these, with hundreds of leaves each, are aligned in a corridor... Then you can feel a gentle breeze around the trees.

Such plants will change the ventilation pattern of places where they live, so the whole ecosystem will evolve with them, and vice-versa.

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Well if we break Wind down to it's basic components, it is an air pressure differential. High pressure flowing into low pressure.

We can use the 'small-scale' sea breezes as an example. On sunny days the sun rays warm up the land quicker than it can warm up the sea (which has a greater capacity to absorb and store the sun's rays). This results in a temperature difference.

The warm land then heats up the air above it. As the air becomes less dense than the cooler air over the sea, it begins to rise. The rising air over the land then results in lower air pressure over the land. The cooler sea air remains denser and therefore has a higher pressure over the sea. This creates the pressure differential. Nature tries to equalize this difference, and the sea breeze is born. Air flows from the cooler sea into the warmer land, giving some much appreciated relief.

To use this for your WindTree, you would need to provide some mechanism for the WindTree to absorb and store alot more of the sun's rays than the land around it. Your WindTree will act like the sea in this example.

This wind could possibly be 24 hours using katabatic and anabatic wind processes. During the day, the air around the WindTree would be cooler than the surrounding land and wind would blow away from it. During the night, the air around the WindTree could be warmer than the surrounding land and wind would blow towards it.

I do not know how strong you could make this wind or if the tree could 'choose' when to release stronger wind. I do think you could have stronger winds just after the peak period of temperature difference than during periods of smaller temperature differences.

I will leave you to work out a mechanism for the WindTree to absorb more heat without frying. Remember there is a difference between absorb (stored, leaving the air cooler) and reflect (immediately back in the air and hence warmer). You could help the WindTree out by adding more reflective surface features to the land around the WindTree. Eg grass/plant pigments or artificial surfaces etc. This will allow you to handwave less.

I'm not too caught up on my Tree physiology. I am assuming the tree would need major internal changes to handle all this extra heat without it escaping back out into the surrounding air.

Currently I have been thinking of a very extensive root network allowing for more heat to be stored in the tree. The WindTree could then also release or redirect warmth back into the surrounding land through the furtherest roots leaving the air directly around the WindTree itself cooler. Coupled with some sort of ultra absorbant tree surface. I don't think the WindTree will have a very wide surface area, as I think that would allow for more heat to be dissipated back into the air.

Why would it need to do this? Not sure. The WindTree would need some major benefit from storing all this heat and not just releasing it back into the air.

Possibly the plant mechanism involved was evolved during a really cold period in the planet's past. Something to do with needing warmth to create new growth in arctic cold conditions? Could be it needed to defrost the frozen ground around it and hence absorbed more heat from the surrounding air to spread along the root network.

Possibly needed to constantly move its branches to avoid a parasite from settling on it. So it needed a constant breeze? Or to attract a symbiotic creature that is attracted by cooler temps?

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