Rough horsetail: The bamboo-like 'gold detector'
CGTN

Rough horsetail is an erect green fern that looks like giant panda's favorite food bamboo. However, rough horsetail can't produce flowers or seeds as bamboo does. The stems have tiny leaves forming a distinctive black collar at the joints. These short leaves are rough, similar to the horses' coat. 

A bunch of rough horsetails. /VCG Photo

A bunch of rough horsetails. /VCG Photo

Detail of the green stem and ear of rough horsetail. /VCG Photo

Detail of the green stem and ear of rough horsetail. /VCG Photo

A closeup of rough horsetail. /VCG Photo

A closeup of rough horsetail. /VCG Photo

The plant is widely distributed in North America, Europe, and northern Asia, and can live up to 20 years. Rough horsetail can help people find gold mines as it usually accumulates high arsenic content in its body and arsenic-rich areas usually have gold nearby.