"Beneath A Glacier's White, Researchers See Green"

"In the news business, an evergreen is a story that doesn't have to run on a particular day, but can stay fresh for a long time."

"This is an evergreen story about an evergreen. In particular, a group of plants called bryophytes. Turns out they may be evergreen quite a bit longer than most people thought.

The most famous bryophyte of them all is moss. 'After a hundred years, a moss may look perfectly natural and even retain its green color,' says Jonathan Shaw, a scientist at the bryology lab at Duke University.

But a hundred years is nothing compared with the bryophytes Catherine La Farge and her colleagues found on Ellesmere Island in the Canadian Arctic. The Teardrop Glacier on Ellesmere Island has been receding rather rapidly recently. 'We were aware that there was vegetation coming out from underneath the glacier,' La Farge says. 'But we had no idea that there was such a diversity of bryophytes that were coming out from underneath the glacier.'"

Joe Palca reports for NPR's The Two-Way May 27, 2013.

Source: NPR, 05/29/2013