Cauliflower and Chaos, Fractals in Every Flower

Monks once hoped to turn lead into gold through alchemy. But consider cauliflower instead. Just two genes are all it takes to transform the ordinary stems, stems, and flowers of the herbaceous, tasteless Brassica oleracea strain into such a wondrous creation as this fractal, cloudy vegetable. This is real alchemy, says Christophe Godin, senior researcher …