leaving the green portion of the visible spectrum to pass through

Michael30000

Senior Member
Russian
Hello everyone,

From the book Lessons From Plants by Beronda Montgomery.

They accumulate molecules of the pigment chlorophyll, which “captures” light energy. The bean seedling’s leaves appear green to the human eye because chlorophyll absorbs red and blue light, leaving the green portion of the visible spectrum to pass through or be reflected. The photoreceptors in our eyes see the wavelengths that are not used by lightgathering photosynthetic pigments.

"They" in the first sentence refers to the bean seedling’s leaves.

Does the bolded phrase mean that the green portion of the visible spectrum passes through chlorophyll?
Or does it mean that the green portion of the visible spectrum passes by (near) chlorophyll, i.e. not through chlorophyll?

Thank you.
 
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    It is a long time since I read such a confusing sentence. It doesn't appear to make sense, especially "to pass through"... to pass through what? :confused:

    I think what it means is

    The bean seedling’s leaves appear green to the human eye because chlorophyll absorbs all the light of the visible spectrum (and more besides) except the green light. The green light is reflected from the surface of the leaves, and that is what we see.
     
    Top