Plant Structure: Introduction to the Parts of the Plant Body and Functions in the Angiosperms

Crop science requires a substantive understanding of plant structure in the angiosperms, specifically the morphology and anatomy of the plant body and the functions of the different parts.

The angiosperms or true flowering plants, also called Angiospermae, Magnoliophyta, and Anthophyta should be given prime attention because they comprise most of the living plants (more than 95%) and food crops (Simpson 2010).

By knowing the different parts of plants and how each part participates in growth, development, and adaptation, it will be possible to make necessary manipulations of the plant and of the environment for improved crop production.

Familiarity with the different morphological and anatomical terms will likewise enhance understanding of the concepts, practices, and advances as well as become useful in the identification, rearing, and improvement of crop plants.

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What Is a Plant, Its Description, Functions, and Classifications

What is a plant?

Several basic questions are relevant in reviewing crop farming or plant agriculture as a science and practice.

These include what is: agriculture, crop, weed, agronomy, and horticulture, as well as the various factors and processes involved in plant growth and development.

But equally necessary is to have a wide understanding of plants and their characteristics.

This is so because crop production generally means plant production.

A plant is a multicellular, autotrophic living organism capable of photosynthesis, primarily adapted to living on land, and belongs to the kingdom Plantae.

Planta or plantae is also the Latin word for plant, sprout, shoot, slip, young plant, seedling, sole, and foot (Kidd 1957; Traupman 1995).

This is one short answer to the question What is a plant?

However, this will require a long elaboration.

And this is not even an exacting answer because there is plenty more about what is a plant and what are those which are not plants.

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The Advent of the Angiosperms: Why Are They Important?

The angiosperms or true flowering plants are presently the most dominant plants on Earth, comprising more than 95% of all existing plants (embryophytes or land plants).

They also represent most of the agricultural and food crops (Kesseler and Stuppy 2009; Simpson 2010).

It is just proper therefore that this group of plants is accorded special concern.

These plants consist largely of monocotyledons and eudicots.

Combined, they comprise 246,000 described species, equivalent to 97% of all angiosperms as of 2010 (Simpson 2010).

Mathematical derivation indicates that there are more than 250,000 species of angiosperms.

These flowering plants exhibit wide diversity.

They occur in various sizes, forms, growth habits, life spans, and habitat preferences.

Their sizes range from less than 1 mm in diameter, as in the smallest flowering plant Wolffia, to more than 90 meters or 300 feet in height as in the eucalyptus trees of Australia.

Wolffia is a water surface dweller and produces the smallest flowers.

Although orchids may not appear so extraordinary, they produce seeds that can be less than 0.2 mm wide ( 2012), the smallest seeds.

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