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Plant Morphology

Plant morphology or phytomorphology is the study of the physical form and external structure of plants. This is usually considered distinct from plant anatomy, which is the study of the internal structure of plants, especially at the microscopic level. Plant morphology is useful in the identification of plants.

Parts of Plants


Roots

The Root is descending part of a plant, it absorbs water and minerals from the soil. Root has tiny root hairs which help in the absorption of minerals and water from the soil and also support plant to stand upright in the soil. The root also store extra food for future uses.

Stems

Stem of a plat act like the plant's plumbing system, transporting water and nutrients from the roots and food in the form of glucose from the leaves to other plant parts. Stems of a plant can be herbaceous like the bendable stem of a daisy or woody like the trunk of a neem tree.

Leaves

In most of the plants, plant’s food is prepared in the leaves. Leaves gather sunlight and carbon dioxide from atmosphere. The process of food manufacturing in plants is called photosynthesis.

Flowers

Flowers are the reproductive part of most plants. Flowers contain pollen and tiny eggs called ovules. After pollination of the flower and fertilization of the ovule, the ovule develops into a fruit.

Fruit

Fruit provides a covering for seeds. Fruit can be fleshy like an apple or hard like a nut.

Seeds

Seeds contain new plants. Seeds form in fruit.

Note- In some plants fruits produced without fertilization in ovary. Such fruits are called parthenocarpy. Generally these fruits are seedless like banana, grapes etc.


Types of Fruits

•    Fruits are classified according to the arrangement from which they derive. There are four types—simple, aggregate, multiple, and accessory fruits.
•    Simple fruits develop from a single ovary of a single flower and may be fleshy or dry. Principal fleshy fruit types are the berry, in which the entire pericarp is soft and pulpy (e.g., the grape, tomato, banana, pepo, hesperidium, and blueberry) and the drupe, in which the outer layers may be pulpy, fibrous, or leathery and the endocarp hardens into a pit or stone enclosing one or more seeds (e.g., the peach, cherry, olive, coconut, and walnut).
•    The name fruit is often applied loosely to all edible plant products and specifically to the fleshy fruits, some of which (e.g., eggplant, tomatoes, and squash) are commonly called vegetables
•    Dry fruits are divided into those whose hard or papery shells split open to release the mature seed (dehiscent fruits) and those that do not split (indehiscent fruits).
•    Among the dehiscent fruits are the legume (e.g., the pod of the pea and bean), which splits at both edges, and the follicle, which splits on only one side (e.g., milkweed and larkspur); others include the dry fruits of the poppy, snapdragon, lily, and mustard. Indehiscent fruits include the single-seeded achene of the buttercup and the composite flowers; the caryopsis (grain); the nut (e.g., acorn and hazelnut); and the fruits of the carrot and parsnip (not to be confused with their edible fleshy roots).
•    An aggregate fruit (e.g., blackberry and raspberry) consists of a mass of small drupes (drupelets), each of which developed from a separate ovary of a single flower.
•    A multiple fruit (e.g., pineapple and mulberry) develops from the ovaries of many flowers growing in a cluster.
•    Accessory fruits contain tissue derived from plant parts other than the ovary; the strawberry is actually a number of tiny achenes (miscalled seeds) outside central pulpy pith that is the enlarged receptacle or base of the flower.

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