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Parts of a Flowering Plant


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Plants are eukaryotic organisms that are characterized by their ability to produce their own food. They are vital to all life on earth as they provide oxygen, shelter, clothing, food, and medicine for other living organisms.

Plants are very diverse and include organisms such as mosses, vines, trees, bushes, grasses, and ferns. Plants can be vascular or nonvascular, flowering or nonflowering, and seed bearing or non-seed bearing.

The information below describe the characteristics and parts of a flowering plant.

Parts of a Flowering Plant

Flowering plants, also called angiosperms, are the most numerous of all the divisions in the Plant Kingdom.

The parts of a flowering plant are characterized by two basic systems: a root system and a shoot system.

These two systems are connected by vascular tissue that runs from the root through the shoot.

The root system enables flowering plants to obtain water and nutrients from the soil. The shoot system allows plants to reproduce and to obtain food through photosynthesis.

Root System

The roots of a flowering plant are very important. They keep the plant anchored in the ground and obtain nutrients and water from the soil. The roots also store food.

Nutrients and water are absorbed through tiny root hairs that extend from the root system. All roots however, do not originate underground. Some plants have roots that originate above ground from stems or leaves. These roots provide support for the stems.

Shoot System

Flowering plant stems, leaves, and flowers make up the plant shoot system.

Plant stems provide support for the plant and allow nutrients and water to travel throughout the plant. Within the stem and throughout the plant are tube-like tissues called xylem and phloem. These tissues carry water, food, and nutrients to all parts of the plant.

The leaves are the sites of food production for the flowering plant. It is here that the plant acquires light energy and carbon dioxide for photosynthesis and releases oxygen into the air.

Leaves can have various shapes and forms, but they all basically consist of a blade, veins, and a petiole. The blade is the flat extended part of the leaf. The veins run throughout the blade and provide a transport system for water and nutrients. The petiole is a short stalk that attaches the leaf to the stem.

Another component of the shoot system of a flowering plant is the flower. The flower is responsible for seed development and reproduction. There are four main flower parts in angiosperms: sepals, petals, stamens, and carpels. The stamen is considered the male portion of a plant and the carpel is considered the female portion.
  • Sepal - green, leaf-like structure that protects the budding flower.

  • Petal - colorful and often scented part of the flower that attracts insects.

  • Stamen - the part of the flower that produces pollen. Consists of a filament and an anther.

    • Anther - sac located at the tip of the filament that contains pollen.

    • Filament - stalk that connects to and holds up the anther.

  • Carpel - consists of the stigma, style, and ovary.

    • Stigma - the tip of the carpel that is sticky in order to collect pollen.

    • Style - the slender, neck-like portion of the carpel that leads to the ovary.

    • Ovary - structure at the base of the carpel that houses the ovule or egg.

When the ovule becomes fertilized, it develops into a seed. The ovary, which surrounds the seed, becomes the fruit.

Flowers that contain both stamens and carpels are called perfect flowers. Flowers that are missing either stamens or carpels are called imperfect flowers.

If a flower contains all four main parts (sepals, petals, stamens, and carpels), it is called a complete flower.

Parts of a Flowering Plant: Summary

In summary, angiosperms are differentiated from other plants by their flowers and fruit.

Flowering plants are characterized by a root system and a shoot system. The root system absorbs water and nutrients from the soil. The shoot system is composed of the stem, leaves, and flowers. This system allows the plant to obtain food and to reproduce.

Both the root system and shoot system work together to enable flowering plants to survive on land.

Parts of a Flowering Plant Quiz

Think you know all about the parts of a flowering plant? Take the Parts of a Flowering Plant Quiz and find out how much you really know about angiosperms.

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