structures and functions in plants
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Structures and Functions in Plants. Roots, Stems, and Leaves. Specialized Plant Cells. There are three types of cell found in plants that are arranged differently in roots, stems, and leaves. Parenchyma Collenchyma Sclerenchyma. Parenchyma.

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structures and functions in plants

Structures and Functions in Plants

Roots, Stems, and Leaves

specialized plant cells
Specialized Plant Cells
  • There are three types of cell found in plants that are arranged differently in roots, stems, and leaves.
    • Parenchyma
    • Collenchyma
    • Sclerenchyma
  • Loosely packed, cube-shaped or elongated cells with large central vacuoles
  • Involved with many metabolic functions including photosynthesis
  • Usually form the bulk of nonwoody plants
  • Alive at maturity
  • Thicker cell walls
  • Provide support for the plant
  • Usually in founds in strands
  • Celery has a lot of collenchyma cells
  • Alive at maturity
  • Thick,even,rigid cell walls
  • Support and strengthen in areas of plant no longer growing
  • Dead at maturity
  • This is FIBER!

The gritty texture of the pear fruit is due to sclerenchyma cells!

plants also have tissue systems
Plants Also Have Tissue Systems

Plants cells work together to form three tissue systems: dermal, ground, and vascular.

These tissue systems organize to produce the three organs of a plant: roots, stems and leaves.

Dermal Tissue
    • Primary function is absorption and protection.
    • Parenchyma cells.
    • Forms the outside covering of plants
    • Epidermis and cuticle
  • Ground Tissue
    • This consists of all three types of cells.
      • Mostly parenchyma, some collenchyma and few


    • Primary function is storage and support.
  • Vascular Tissue
    • Primary function is transport and support.
    • Xylem and phloem
growth occurs in meristem
Growth Occurs in Meristem
  • Apical
    • Tips of roots and shoots
    • Growth in length
  • Lateral
    • Occurs in gymnosperms and most dicots
    • Growth in diameter
  • Intercalary
    • Located above the bases of leaves and stems
  • Tap
  • Fibrous
  • Adventitious
primary growth in roots
Primary Growth in Roots

Roots increase in length through cell division, elongation, and maturation in the root tip. A root cap covers the apical meristem. It produces a slimy substance allowing the root to move easily through the soil. Root hairs are extensions of the epidermis that increase surface area.

secondary growth in roots
Secondary Growth in Roots
  • This occurs in gymnosperms and dicots.
  • The vascular core of a primary root is surrounded by the pericycle.
  • The pericycle produces lateral roots.
root functions
Root Functions
  • Anchor the plant in the soil
  • Absorb water and minerals
    • 13 minerals are required for normal growth
  • Adapted to store carbohydrates
    • Usually stored as starch and stored in parenchyma cells
    • Potatoes, sweet potatoes,

carrots, turnips

monocot vs dicots roots




Monocot vs Dicots Roots

Vascular tissue matures to form the innermost cylinder of the root. In the dicot, the xylem forms an X and the monocot has a prominent endodermis. The cortex is between the epidermis and endodermis. The cortex and the endodermis compose the GROUND TISSUE.

  • There are many differences in stem shape and growth that are the results of adaptations to the environment.
  • Stems have a more complex structure than roots.
  • Stems grow in length at the tips and grow in circumference through lateral meristem.
Stems are divided into segments called internodes.
  • A node is at the end of each internode.
  • At the point of attachment, each leaf has bud.
  • A bud is capable of developing into a new shoot. The bud has apical meristem enclosed in special leaves called bud scales.
  • At the tip of each stem there is usually a terminal bud. Each spring when growth resumes, the terminal bud opens.
primary growth in stems
Primary Growth in Stems
  • Apical meristem gives rise to all three types of tissue.
  • In gymnosperms and dicots, ground tissue forms the cortex and pith. Pith is located in the center of the stem. In monocots, the ground tissue does not separate into pith and cortex.
secondary growth in stems is called wood
Secondary Growth in Stems is Called Wood


Sapwood (light)


Annual ring


Bark-protective outer covering composed of cork, cork cambium and phloem

functions of stems
Functions of Stems
  • Function in transport and storage of nutrients.
  • Translocation is the movement of food in the phloem.
    • Pressure-flow hypothesis (carbohydrates are actively transported and water moves by osmosis)
  • Transpiration is water loss (cohesion-tension theory)
storage of water and nutrients
Storage of Water and Nutrients
  • Abundant parenchyma cells in the cortex provide plants with ample storage.
  • Cactus stems are specialized for storing water.
  • Sugar-cane stores large amounts of sucrose.
  • Potatoes store starch.
  • Most leaves are thin and flat, an adaptation that helps a plant capture sunlight for photosynthesis.
  • Leaves exist in many variations that reflect adaptations to environmental conditions.
leaf adaptations
Leaf Adaptations
  • Tendrils – coiled specialized leaves to aid a climbing vine ( some may be modified stems – grapes)
  • Carnivorous plants – pitcher plant and venus fly trap – leaves function as food traps
  • Spines- modified leaves that protect the plant. Spines are small and nonphotosynthetic. In a cactus, spines reduce transpiration.
leaf structures
Leaf Structures
  • blade
  • stipules
  • petiole
  • vein
  • midrib
A compound leaf consists of several, separated segments called leaflets. The leaflets are usually grouped in pairs around the elongated rhachis

that corresponds to the midrib of a normal leaf.

vein patterns
Vein Patterns
  • Inparallel - veinedleaves, the veins run parallel to each other. This condition is characteristic of the monocotyledoneae.
  • Pinnately netted - veinedleaves have a single primary vein or midrib, from which smaller veins branch off, like the divisions of a feather.
  • Palmately netted- veinedleaves have several principal veins radiating from the base of the leaf blade, as in Acer rubrum (red maple).
Parts of a leaf


palisade layer

spongy layer






leaf functions
Leaf Functions
  • Photosynthesis
    • Limitations – insufficient water due to transpiration. A corn plant losses 98% of water absorbed by roots through transpiration.
benefits of photosynthesis
Benefits of Photosynthesis
  • 1. The oxygen in the air comes from
  • photosynthesis. The plants continue to
  • replenish the oxygen in the air.
  • 2. All of our food comes directly or
  • indirectly from photosynthesis.