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ABBOTTS . The ovary (with ovules) grows and develops into fruit The stigma and style dry and fall off. The fruit protects the seed. SEED DISTRIBUTION. EXTRA STUFF. Fruit fall down, burst open and seeds are released. Seeds are distributed by: Wind Insects/other animals Water Humans

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  • The ovary (with ovules) grows and develops into fruit

  • The stigma and style dry and fall off.

  • The fruit protects the seed.

Seed distribution



  • Fruit fall down, burst open and seeds are released.

  • Seeds are distributed by:

    • Wind

    • Insects/other animals

    • Water

    • Humans

  • Seeds are adapted according to the method in which they are dispersed, e.g. wings and hooks.

  • Abbotts



    • Many plant species are currently under threat

    • By saving seeds, many of these plants could be saved

    • A seed bank is a facility used to store seeds of various plants in an effort to maintain biodiversity

    • Many countries have seed banks


    Kew millenium seed bank at Wakehurst Place, Sussex.

    Seed collections arrive by courier from around the world


    The largest seed in the collection is the coco de mer seed and the smallest is a Chilean orchid – there are about 1m seeds in the vial


    The seeds, together with pressed plant specimens and vital field data, are brought back to seed banks around the world for processing, research and long-term storage


    Cleaning acer seeds. Once at the seed bank, seed is cleaned to reduce bulk and the risk of disease. This requires great care and expertise and to limit damage, much of the work is done by hand using sieves


    Seeds in temperature cabinet, testing for viability. Most species have seeds that stay viable when dried to the low moisture levels necessary for long-term storage. However, certain species have seeds that are not tolerant to drying and cannot be conserved long-term in a seed bank. There are other ways to deal with these species


    Once the seed has been dried to the required level it is packaged and placed in the cold room where it is kept at a temperature of -20C


    The length of time that each collection can be stored for is fixed by the biology of the seed. Depending on the species, seeds may live centuries – and even millennia


    Eucalyptus virginii seed. The next phase of the seed bank project is an even more ambitious target of collecting a total of 25% - about 75,000 - of the world's plant species by 2020


    • The Svalbard Global Seed Vault

    • which is established in the permafrost in the mountains of Svalbard, is designed to store duplicates of seeds from seed

    • collections around the globe. Many of these collections are in developing

    • countries.

    Built into a reinforced concrete tunnel

    Drilled 70m into the mountain

    Aims to store 4.5 million seed samples from

    Every country in the world

    Store seeds at -180C

    Will be viable for thousands of years


    • Seeds can be grown to replace seeds that are lost as a result of

      • Over-exploitation of wild plants

      • Invasion of alien plant species

      • Habitat loss (development of cities etc)

    • Seeds can be grown to maintain/restore biodiversity

    • Seeds can be used for research in bio-engineering (try and find solutions to crop failures)

    • Seeds can be grown to produce plants for pharmaceutical research


    • Seeds contain stored food (starch, protein, oil) for feeding the new plant until it can support itself

    • Seeds are a good source of food for humans

    • Roots, stems, leaves, flowers and fruits are also food sources for humans!

    Importance of grains and pulses



    • eg maize, wheat, rice, oats provide:

    • A rich source of starch which is a good source of energy

    • Fibre from the seed coat of whole grains helps to keep the

    • bowel healthy

    • Most of the B vitamins and many minerals from the seed coat

    • Small amounts of protein and fat


    • Eg lentils, peas, beans, peanuts and soya beans

    • Are a good source of protein, minerals and B Vitamins

    • Help regulate blood sugar levels


    • Eg almonds, pecans, cashews

    • Are a good source of energy

    • Are rich in monounsaturated or polyunsturated fatty

    • acids (healthier than animal fat)

    • Supply Vitamin E


    • Eg peanuts, soybeans, corn, sunflower and canola

    • Are rich in monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fatty acids

    • Can contain vital omega-3 fatty acids


    PAGE 66

    • An endemic plant is one that grows only in one specific geographic area or habitat type

    • Of the 20 000 plant species in South Africa, 66% are endemic to various parts of the country

    • Endemic plants can easily become endangered if their habitat changes

    • Changes are mainly due to the actions of humans

    • The seeds of these plants have great potential

    • Can be used for many purposes

    Fynbos vegetation


    • Of the 9000 species in the fynbos vegetation zone of south western South Africa 6 200 are endemic

    • 1 000 are endangered

    • Many of the endemic species are extinct


    Endemic: Organisms that are native and can be found ONLY in that location.

    Indigenous: Organisms that are native but can be found elsewhere.


    In biogeography, a species is defined as native (or indigenous) to a given region or ecosystem if its presence in that region is the result of only natural processes, with no human intervention.

    Every natural organism (as opposed to a domesticated organism) has its own natural range of distribution in which it is regarded as native. Outside this native range, a species may be introduced by human activity; it is then referred to as an introduced species within the regions where it was anthropogenically introduced.

    An indigenous species is not necessarily endemic.

    In biology and ecology, endemic means exclusively native to the biota of a specific place. An indigenous species may occur in areas other than the one under consideration.


    To maintain the supply of these plants it is important to

    Have a good supply of seeds




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