At certain developmental stages, plants shed their leaves, flowers and fruit in a process known as abscission. Even though abscission is crucial for the reproductive success of flowering plants, little is known about the genes that control this process. Now, Sarah Liljegren and co-workers demonstrate that the Arabidopsis NEVERSHED (NEV) gene is required for floral abscission (see p. 1909). The authors identified NEV through a screen for mutants that retain their floral organs indefinitely and establish that it encodes an ADP-ribosylation factor GTPase-activating protein (ARF-GAP), a type of protein that regulates membrane trafficking and remodelling of the actin cytoskeleton. NEV localises to the trans-Golgi network (TGN) and to endosomes; nev mutations disrupt the structure of the Golgi apparatus, alter the location of the TGN and cause paramural vesicles to accumulate near cell walls in the abscission zones of flowers. The researchers propose, therefore, that a crucial role of NEV is to facilitate the transport of cargo molecules required for abscission through the TGN and endosomal pathways.