ANATOMY OF FLOWERING PLANTS
- Study of internal structure of plants is called anatomy.
- Plants have cells as the basic unit, cells are organised into tissues and in turn the tissues are organised into organs. Different organs in a plant show differences in their internal structure.
- Internal structures also show adaptations to diverse environments.
A tissue is a group of cells having a common origin and usually performing a common function.
Classification of tissues –
- This tissue is responsible for active cell division which results in Growth in plants.
- Based on location and origin, Plants have different kinds of meristems.
Apical meristem –
The meristems which occur at the tips of roots and shoots and produce primary tissues.e.g., root and shoot apical meristem.
During the formation of leaves and elongation of stem, some cells ‘left behind’ from shoot apical meristem, constitute the axillary bud. Such buds are present in the axils of leaves and are capable of forming a branch or a flower.
Intercalary meristem –
The meristem which occurs between mature tissues is known as intercalary meristem.
They occur in grasses and regenerate parts removed by the grazing herbivores.
Both apical meristems and intercalary meristems are primary meristems because they appear early in life of a plant and contribute to the formation of the primary plant body.
Lateral meristem –
The meristem that occurs in the mature regions of roots and shoots of many plants, particularly those that produce woody axis and appear later than primary meristem is called the secondary or lateral meristem.
Fascicular vascular cambium, interfascicular cambium and cork-cambium are examples of lateral meristems. These are responsible for producing the secondary tissues.
- The cells of the permanent tissues do not generallydivide further.
- Permanent tissues having all cellssimilar in structure and function are called simpletissues. Permanent tissues having many differenttypes of cells are called complex tissues.
- It forms the majorcomponent within organs.
- The cells of theparenchyma are generally isodiametric.
- Their walls are thin and madeup of cellulose.
- They may either be closely packedor have small intercellular spaces.
- Theparenchyma performs various functions likephotosynthesis, storage, secretion.
- It is present in layers below theepidermis (hypodermis) in dicotyledonous plants.
- It is foundeither as a homogeneous layer or in patches.
- Itconsists of cells which are much thickened at thecorners due to a deposition of cellulose,hemicellulose and pectin.
- Collenchymatous cellsmay be oval, spherical or polygonal and oftencontain chloroplasts.
- Intercellularspaces are absent.
- They provide mechanicalsupport to the growing parts of the plant such asyoung stem and petiole of a leaf.
- It consists of long, narrow cellswith thick and lignified cell walls having a few ornumerous pits.
- They are usually dead and withoutprotoplasts.
- It provides mechanical support to organs.
- On the basis of variation in form,structure, origin and development, sclerenchymamay be either fibres or sclereids.
- Fibers– these arethick-walled, elongated and pointed cells,generally occuring in groups, in various parts ofthe plant.
- Sclereids – theseare spherical, oval orcylindrical, highly thickened dead cells with very narrow cavities (lumen). These are commonly found in the fruit walls of nuts; pulp of fruits like guava, pear and sapota; seed coats of legumes and leaves of tea.
- Xylem functions as a conducting tissue for water and minerals from roots to the stem and leaves.
- It also provides mechanical strength to the plant parts.
- It is composed of four different kinds of elements, namely, tracheids, vessels, xylem fibres and xylem parenchyma.
- Tracheids –
- Tracheids are elongated or tube like cells with thick and lignified walls and tapering ends.
- These are dead and are without protoplasm.
- The inner layers of the cell walls have thickenings which vary in form.
- In flowering plants, tracheids and vessels are the main water transporting elements.
- Vessels –
- Vessel is a long cylindrical tube-like structure made up of many cells called vessel members, each with lignified walls and a large central cavity.
- The vessel cells are also devoid of protoplasm.
- Vessel members are interconnected through perforations in their common walls.
- Gymnosperms lack vessels intheir xylem. The presence of vessels is a characteristic featureof angiosperms.
- Xylem fibres –
- They have highly thickened walls and obliterated central lumens.
- These may either be septate or aseptate.
- Xylem parenchyma –
- Cells are living and thin-walled,and their cell walls are made up of cellulose.
- They store food materials in the form of starch or fat, and other substances like tannins.
- The radial conduction of water takes place by the ray parenchymatous cells.
- Primary xylem is of two types – protoxylem and metaxylem. The first formed primary xylem elements are called protoxylem and the later formed primary xylem is called metaxylem.
- Endarch –Instems, the protoxylem lies towards the centre (pith) and themetaxylem lies towards the periphery of the organ. This typeof primary xylem is called endarch.
- Exarch –In roots, the protoxylemlies towards periphery and metaxylem lies towards the centre.Such arrangement of primary xylem is called exarch.
- It transports food materials, usually from leaves toother parts of the plant.
- Phloem in angiosperms is composedof sieve tube elements, companion cells, phloem parenchyma and phloem fibres.
- Gymnosperms have albuminous cells and sieve cells. They lack sieve tubes and companion cells.
- Sieve tube elements –
- They are also long, tube-like structures, arranged longitudinally and are associated with the companion cells.
- Their end walls are perforated in a sieve-like manner to form the sieve plates.
- A mature sieve element possesses a peripheral cytoplasm and a large vacuole but lacks a nucleus.
- Companion cells –
- The functions of sieve tubes are controlled by the nucleus of companion cells.
- The companion cells are specialised parenchymatous cells, which are closely associated with sieve tube elements.
- The sieve tube elements and companion cells are connected by pit fields present between their common longitudinal walls.
- The companion cells help in maintaining the pressure gradient in the sieve tubes.
- Phloem parenchyma –
- Itis made up of elongated, tapering cylindrical cells which have dense cytoplasm and nucleus.
- The cell wall is composed of cellulose and has pits through which plasmodesmatal connections exist between the cells.
- The phloem parenchyma stores food material and other substances like resins, latex and mucilage.
- Phloem parenchyma is absent in most of the monocotyledons.
- Phloem fibres (bast fibres)–
- They are made up of sclerenchymatous cells.
- These are generally absent in the primary phloem but are found in the secondary phloem.
- These are much elongated, unbranched and have pointed, needle like apices.
- The cell wall of phloem fibres is quite thick.
- At maturity, these fibres lose their protoplasm and become dead.
- Phloem fibres of jute, flax and hemp are used commercially.
- The first formed primary phloem consists of narrow sieve tubes and is referred to as protophloem and the later formed phloem has bigger sieve tubes and is referred to as metaphloem.
THE TISSUE SYSTEM
On the basis of their structure and location, there are three types of tissue systems.
These are the epidermal tissue system, the ground or fundamental tissue system and the vascular or conducting tissue system.
Epidermal Tissue System
- The epidermal tissue system forms the outer-most covering of the whole plant body and comprises epidermal cells, stomata and the epidermal appendages – the trichomes and hairs.
- Epidermis –
- It is the outer most layer of the primary plant body.
- It is made up of elongated, compactly arranged cells, which form a continuous layer.
- Epidermis is usually single layered.
- Epidermal cells are parenchymatous with a small amount of cytoplasm lining the cell wall and a large vacuole.
- Cuticle –
- It covers the outside of the epidermis.
- It is a waxy thick layer.
- It prevents the loss of water.
- Cuticle is absent in roots.
- Stomata –
- They are present in the epidermis of leaves.
- Stomata regulate the process of transpiration and gaseous exchange.
- Each stoma is composed of two bean shaped cells known as guard cells.
- In grasses, the guard cells are dumbbell shaped.
- The outer walls of guard cells (away from the stomatal pore) are thin and the inner walls (towards the stomatal pore) are highly thickened.
- The guard cells possess chloroplasts and regulate the opening and closing of stomata.
- Sometimes, a few epidermal cells, in the vicinity of the guard cells become specialised in their shape and size and are known as subsidiary cells.
- The stomatal aperture, guard cells and the surrounding subsidiary cells are together called stomatal apparatus.
- Epidermal appendages –
- Roothairs – these areunicellular elongations of the epidermal cells and help absorb water andminerals from the soil.
- Trichomes –these are present on stem. The trichomes in the shoot system are usually multicellular.They may be branched or unbranched and soft or stiff. They may evenbe secretory. The trichomes help in preventing water loss due totranspiration.
Ground Tissue System
- All tissues except epidermis and vascular bundles constitute the ground tissue.
- It consists of simple tissues such as parenchyma, collenchyma and sclerenchyma.
- Parenchymatous cells are usually present in cortex,pericycle, pith and medullary rays, in the primary stems and roots.
- Inleaves, the ground tissue consists of thin-walled chloroplast containingcells and is called mesophyll.
Vascular Tissue System
- The vascular system consists of complex tissues,the phloem and the xylem.
- The xylem and phloem together constitute vascular bundles.
- In dicotyledonous stems, cambium is present between phloem and xylem. Such vascular bundles because of the presence of cambium possess the ability to form secondary xylem and phloem tissues, and hence are called open vascular bundles.
- In the monocotyledons,the vascular bundles have no cambium present in them. Hence, since they do not form secondary tissues they are referred to as closed.
- When xylem and phloem within a vascular bundle are arranged in an alternate manner on different radii, the arrangement is called radial such as in roots.
- In conjoint type of vascular bundles,the xylem and phloem are situated at the same radius of vascular bundles. Such vascular bundles are common in stems and leaves. The conjoint vascular bundles usually have the phloem located only on the outer side of xylem.
ANATOMY OF DICOTYLEDONOUS AND MONOCOTYLEDONOUS PLANTS
Dicotyledonous Root (Sunflower Root)
Epidermis – outermost layer,many cells protrude in the form of unicellular root hairs.
Cortex – consists of several layers of thin-walled parenchyma cells with intercellular spaces.
Endodermis – innermost layer of the cortex. It comprises a single layer of barrel- shaped cells without any intercellular spaces. The tangential as well as radial walls of the endodermal cells have a deposition of water impermeable,waxy material-suberin in the form of casparian strips.
Pericycle – few layers of thick-walled parenchyomatous cells, Next to endodermis. Initiation of lateral roots and vascular cambium during the secondary growth takes place in these cells.
Pith – The pith is small or inconspicuous.
Conjuctive tissue – The parenchymatous cells which lie between the xylem and the phloem are called conjuctive tissue.
Vascular bundles – Radial/alternate type. Exarch xylem. There are usually two to four xylem and phloem patches. Later, a cambium ring develops between the xylem and phloem.
Stele – All tissues on the innerside of the endodermis such as pericycle, vascular bundles and pithconstitute the stele.
The anatomy of the monocot root is similar to the dicot root in many respects.
It has epidermis, cortex, endodermis, pericycle, vascular bundles and pith.
As compared to the dicot root, monocots have more xylem bundles (usually more than six – polyarch).
Pith is large and well developed.
Monocotyledonous roots do not undergo any secondary growth.
Epidermis – outermost protective layer of the stem Covered with a thin layer of cuticle, it may bear trichomes and a few stomata.
Hypodermis – consists of a few layers of collenchymatous cells just below the epidermis, which provide mechanical strength to the young stem.
Cortex – consist of rounded thin walled parenchymatous cells with conspicuous intercellular spaces.
Endodermis – The innermost layer of the cortex is called the endodermis. The cells of the endodermis are rich in starch grains and the layer is also referred to as the starch sheath.
Pericycle – present on the inner side of the endodermis and above the phloem in the form of semi-lunar patches of sclerenchyma.
VascuIr bundles – Conjoint, collateral, open type; endarch xylem; arranged in a ring.
Pith – A large number of rounded, parenchymatous cells with large intercellular spaces which occupy the central portion of the stem constitute the pith.
- sclerenchymatous hypodermis,
- large, undifferentiated, conspicuous parenchymatous ground tissue large number of scattered vascular bundles, each surrounded by a sclerenchymatous bundle sheath,
- Vascular bundles are conjoint and closed. Peripheral vascular bundles are generally smaller than the centrally located ones.
- The phloem parenchyma is absent, and water-containing cavities are present within the vascular bundles.
Dorsiventral (Dicotyledonous) Leaf
Epidermis – it covers both the upper surface (adaxial epidermis) and lower surface (abaxial epidermis) of the leaf and has a conspicuous cuticle.
The lower (abaxial) epidermis generally bears more stomata than the upper (adaxial) epidermis. The latter may even lack stomata.
Mesophyll – parenchymatous cells present between the upperand the lower epidermis. it possesses chloroplasts and carry out photosynthesis.
It has two types of cells – the palisade parenchyma andthe spongy parenchyma.
Palisade parenchyma is placed adaxially and made up of elongated cells, which are arranged vertically and parallel to each other.
Spongy parenchyma made up of oval or round and loosely arranged spongy parenchymatous cells. There are numerous large spaces and air cavities between these cells.
Vascular system – vascular bundles are seen in the veins and the midrib.
The size of the vascular bundles are dependent onthe size of the veins.
The veins vary in thickness in the reticulate venation of the dicot leaves.
The vascular bundles are surrounded by a layer of thick walled bundle sheath cells.
Isobilateral (Monocotyledonous) Leaf
The anatomy of isobilateral leaf is similar to that of the dorsiventral leaf in many ways.
It shows the following characteristic differences –
- In an isobilateral leaf, the stomata are present on both the surfaces of the epidermis.
- mesophyll is not differentiated into palisade and spongy parenchyma.
- In grasses, certain adaxial epidermal cells along the veins modify themselves into large, empty, colourless cells. These are called bulliform cells. When the bulliform cells in the leaves have absorbed water and are turgid, the leaf surface is exposed. When they are flaccid due to water stress, they make the leaves curl inwards to minimise water loss.
- The parallel venation in monocot leaves is reflected in the near similar sizes of vascular bundles (except in main veins).
- The growth of the roots and stems in length with the help of apical meristem is called the primary growth.
- Apart from primary growth most dicotyledonous plants exhibit an increase in girth. This increase is called the secondary growth.
- Secondary growth also occurs in stems and roots of gymnosperms. However, secondary growth does not occur in monocotyledons.
- The tissues involved in secondary growth are the two lateral meristems: vascular cambium and cork cambium.
- Secondary growth due to Vascular Cambium
- The meristematic layer that is responsible for cutting off vascular tissues – xylem and pholem – is called vascular cambium.
- In the young stem it is present in patches as a single layer between the xylem and phloem. Later it forms a complete ring.
Formation of cambial ring
In dicot stems, the cells of cambium present between primary xylem and primary phloem is the intrafascicular cambium. The cells of medullary cells, adjoining these intra fascicular cambium become meristematic and form the inter fascicular cambium. Thus, a continuous ring of cambium is formed.
Cambium ring = inter + intrafascicular cambium
Activity of the cambial ring
- The cambial ring becomes active and begins to cut off new cells, both towards the inner and the outer sides.
- The cells cut off towards pith,mature into secondary xylem and the cells cut off towards periphery mature into secondary phloem.
- The cambium is generally more active on the inner side than on the outer. As a result, the amount of secondary xylem produced is more than secondary phloem and soon forms a compact mass.
- The primary and secondary phloems get gradually crushed due to the continued formation and accumulation of secondary xylem.
- The primary xylem however remains more or less intact, in or around the centre.
- At some places, the cambium forms a narrow band of parenchyma, which passes through the secondary xylem and the secondary phloem in the radial directions. These are the secondary medullary rays.
Spring wood and autumn wood
- The activity of cambium is different in different conditions.
- As in temperate regions, where the climatic conditions are not uniform through the year, In the spring season, cambium is very active and produces a large number of xylary elements having vessels with wider cavities. The wood formed during this season is called spring wood or early wood.
- In winter, the cambium is less active and forms fewer xylary elements that have narrow vessels, and this wood is called autumn wood or late wood.
- The spring wood is lighter in colour and has a lower density whereas the autumn wood is darker and has a higher density.
- The two kinds of woods that appear as alternate concentric rings, constitute an annual ring. Annual rings seen in a cut stem give an estimate of the age of the tree.
- Dendrochronology – study/finding age of plant with the help of annual ring.
|Cambium is very active.||Cambium is less active.|
|Large no of xylary vessels are produced.||Fewer xylary elements.|
|Vessels with wider cavities.||Vessels with narrow cavities.|
|Lighter in color||Darker in color.|
|Lower density||Higher density.|
Heartwood and sapwood
- In old trees, the greater part of secondary xylem is dark brown due to deposition of organic compounds like tannins, resins, oils, gums, aromatic substances and essential oils in the central or innermost layers of the stem. These substances make it hard, durable and resistant to the attacks of micro-organisms and insects. This region comprises dead elements with highly lignified walls and is called
The heartwood does not conduct water but it gives mechanical support to the stem.
- The peripheral region of the secondary xylem, is lighter in colour and is known as the It is involved in the conduction of water and minerals from root to leaf.
|Central part of secondary xylem||Peripheral part of secondary xylem|
|Dark brown in colour||Lighter in colour|
|deposition of organic compounds like tannins, resins, oils, gums, aromatic substances and essential oils||No deposition of organic matter.|
|Resistant to the attacks of micro-organisms and insect.||Not Resistant to the attacks of micro-organisms and insect.|
|Comprises dead elements with highly lignified wall.||Walls are not highly lignified.|
|Provide mechanical support to stem||Conduction of water and minerals from roots to leaf.|
Secondary growth due to Cork Cambium
- As the stem continues to increase in girth due to the activity of vascular cambium, the outer cortical and epidermis layers get broken and need to be replaced to provide new protective cell layers.
- Hence, another meristematic tissue called cork cambium or phellogen develops, usually in the cortex region.
- Phellogen is a couple of layers thick. It is made of narrow, thin-walled and nearly rectangular cells.
- Phellogen cuts off cells on both sides. The outer cells differentiate into cork or phellem while the inner cells differentiate into secondary cortex or
- The cork is impervious to water due to suberin deposition in the cell wall. The cells of secondary cortex are parenchymatous.
- Phellogen + phellem + phelloderm =
- Due to activity of the cork cambium, pressure builds up on the remaining layers peripheral to phellogen and ultimately these layers die and slough off.
- Bark refers to all tissues exterior to the vascular cambium (includes secondary phloem).
- Bark that is formed early in the season is called early or soft Towards the end of the season late or hard bark is formed.
- At certain regions, the phellogen cuts off closely arranged parenchymatous cells on the outer side instead of cork cells. These parenchymatous cells soon rupture the epidermis, forming a lens shaped openings called lenticels. Lenticels permit the exchange of gases between the outer atmosphere and the internal tissue of the stem. These occur in most woody trees.
Secondary Growth in Roots
- In the dicot root, the vascular cambium is completely secondary in origin.
- It originates from the tissue located just below the phloem bundles, a portion of pericycle tissue, above the protoxylem forming a complete and continuous wavy ring, which later becomes circular.
- Further events are similar to those already described above for a dicotyledon stem.
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