/A company has used trees to find gold deep underground in Australia

A company has used trees to find gold deep underground in Australia

A tree in Australia

ROFF SMITH/NatGeoImageCollection

A technique that uses trees to spot minerals in the ground has had one of its first major successes, after a company struck gold in South Australia.

Trees act as deep underground pumps that bring water up bearing minerals. By analysing leaves from trees it’s possible to see if gold is below. However, the method is difficult because the quantity of mineral is small.

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Now Australia-based firm Marmota has discovered a vein six metres thick with 3.4 grams of gold per ton, 44 metres below the surface. It …