THE STEM. STRUCTURE & FUNCTIONS. General Terminology. Annual – a plant that completes its life cycle (seed, flower, fruit and seed) in one growing season. Ex. Crop plants Biennial – a plant that requires two growing seasons (2 years) to complete its life cycle. Ex. Asparagus
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STRUCTURE & FUNCTIONS
Vessels and tracheids
Seive tube elements and companion cells
Growth rings – growth layers which correspond to growing seasons.
Early wood – “spring wood”, abundance of rain and cooler temperature which allow cells to grow larger and more rapid.
Late wood – “summer wood”, less than optimal growing conditions, growth slows.
Sapwood – wood found between vascular cambium and heartwood, functions in the transport of water and solutes.
Heartwood – wood found in the center of the tree trunk, usually darker because of resins, oils and gums. Doesn’t transport water or solutes.