In Guardians of the Galaxy Groot threw something in the dark that spreads light:

groot light

What are these? Are these fireflies? Or something else? How does Groot (a walking tree) throw those lights? How are they created?

I searched a bit but found nothing. IMDb trivia section says:

Groot has never shown this ability in the comic books.

So what are they?

  • 6
    "Where did you learn to do that?" "I'm pretty sure the answer is 'I am Groot'" Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 17:24
  • 3
    I assumed they were bio-luminescent glowing spores, very similar to dandelion seeds. They didn't seem to fly so much as float.
    – Adam Davis
    Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 18:37
  • @AdamDavis - exactly my thoughts as well.
    – Omegacron
    Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 20:18

3 Answers 3


Since it's not in the comics there's no explanation there where one would usually turn.

It's not explained in the movie either.

I also cannot find any official announcement from the movie creators explaining what they are.

All these things mean it's down to interpretation, i.e. your question cannot be answered at this time.

My interpretation is that a few of them appear to have wings, so probably glowbugs. But they could also very well be large balls of bioluminescent cells (like what glowbugs have), since it would seem more lore-friendly to me that Groot can only produce flora, and there are some moss' with bioluminescent cells.

How they float is another thing entirely.

  • Perhaps the bioluminescence provides its own heat in this instance, and convection takes care of the rest. Commented Jan 11, 2017 at 9:25

Within the Comics (The Bendis versions at least, which is the most current run of GOTG), groot actually has bulbous, glowing areas as par of his anatomy: so there is a precedent for bioluminosity...

enter image description here

By the look of the glowing spores he produces, it is probably to suggest that groot (being a plant) disperses his seeds as by driftseed. There are hundreds of plants that do this, and the relative difference in gravity could account for their 'floating' effect, if they are not self powered somehow (this is an alien species, after-all).

Either way, I think its safe to assume the 'glowing things' are supposed to be seeds, and Groot is dispersing them to produce light...

  • 1
    Many or even most plant seeds on earth will appear to "float", as they are very small and very light. It's an evolutionary imperative if you want your seeds to be carried particularly far on the wind. So I don't think this needs to be related to magical gravity, particularly. Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 23:40
  • Sounds good John. Yeah may be those are seeds and somehow Groot modified them genetically to glow. Thanks :)
    – AtanuCSE
    Commented Nov 18, 2014 at 5:45
  • Perhaps the bioluminescence provides its own heat in this instance, and convection takes care of the rest. Commented Jan 11, 2017 at 9:26

Those are Groot’s spores.

Groot has the ability to produce spores that provide light. According to James Gunn, the director of the Guardians of the Galaxy films, “[…] that’s just his spores for lighting.”

screenshot of James Gunn's tweet

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