The permafrost of the world's Arctic regions holds many prehistoric mysteries. Whether it's a well-preserved mammoth or an ancient plant, scientists can learn a lot from these biological discoveries. In 2012, a Russian team regenerated a fertile, flowering line of his Silene stenophylla plants from his 32,000-year-old pods. This amazing feat is detailed in an article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The discovery of prehistoric seed pods was part of a large-scale excavation of an ancient ground squirrel wintering burrow in the Siberian ice sheet. Squirrel food was preserved in confined burrows, providing a wealth of biological evidence. The fruit of Silene stenophylla specifically dates to the Pleistocene, about 32,000 years ago. Researchers from the Russian Academy of Sciences have so far found that the oldest regenerated plant is a date palm, which is about 2,000 years old.