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Simple Vascular Plants. Pteridophytes (Ferns). Seedless Vascular Plants. Not for examinations. Divisions. Psilophyta – Whisk ferns Lycophyta – Club mosses Sphenophyta – horsetails Pteridophyta - ferns. Ferns. Largest group of extant (living) vascular plants

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Simple Vascular Plants

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simple vascular plants

Simple Vascular Plants

Pteridophytes (Ferns)


Not for examinations

  • Psilophyta – Whisk ferns
  • Lycophyta – Club mosses
  • Sphenophyta – horsetails
  • Pteridophyta- ferns
  • Largest group of extant (living) vascular plants
  • Wide range of habitats (terrestrial, aquatic, arboreal tree ferns, epiphytic)
  • Can asexually reproduce by Rhizomes (underground stems)




  • Dominant Sporophyte stage has true roots, stems, and leaves
  • Roots and stems underground
  • Leaves called fronds found above ground and attached to a stem like petiole
characteristics of pteridophytes
Characteristics of Pteridophytes
  • Have true leaves and roots
  • Leaves are called fronds
  • New leaves are coiled in a bud
characteristics of pteridophytes1
Characteristics of Pteridophytes
  • Roots are fibrous
  • Anchor the plant
  • And absorb water and minerals
  • Grow out of the rhizome (horizontal stem) that grows partially underground
characteristics of pteridophytes2
Characteristics of Pteridophytes
  • Have vascular tissue
    • Xylem, tracheids and phloem
characteristics of pteridophytes3
Characteristics of Pteridophytes
  • Reproduce by means of spores
  • Spore cases called sporangia are found on the underside of sporophylls
  • Sporangia often occur in clusters called sori
characteristics of pteridophytes4
Characteristics of Pteridophytes
  • Wind spreads spores that land on moist soil & germinate into a prothallus (tiny independent gametophyte) that produces gametes



Archegonia (eggs)

  • The prothallus starts the Gametophyte stage
  • Gametophyte is heart shaped and short lived
  • Male antheridia & female archegonia grow on gametophyte
  • Sperm swims to egg to fertilize

Antheridia Sperm


characteristics of pteridophytes5
Characteristics of pteridophytes
  • Produce motile male gametes
  • Rely on water for fertilisatiom

Fern Prothallus with archegonia Fern sperm cell

uses for ferns
Uses for Ferns


  • Help prevent erosion
  • Fiddleheads are eaten as food
  • Ornamental plants for yards and homes
  • Helped form coal deposits millions of years ago