The smell of rain

One of my favorite sensations, the smell of rain, has a scientific explanation.

…one of the main causes of this distinctive smell is a blend of oils secreted by some plants during arid periods. When a rainstorm comes after a drought, compounds from the oils—which accumulate over time in dry rocks and soil—are mixed and released into the air. The duo also observed that the oils inhibit seed germination, and speculated that plants produce them to limit competition for scarce water supplies during dry times.

Continue reading on what makes rain smell so good at Surprising Science.

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