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Life Science

11 March 2008

Plants (con't)

Angiosperms- The Flowering Plants


• 235,000 species
• most dominant group of plants
• range in size from 1mm to 100+meters
o smallest is Duckweed, which is common in ponds in TN
o largest is Eucalyptus regnans
• Most are free living and photosynthetic.
o There are a few flowering plants that are parasitic, such as mistletoe.
Some are saprobes and absorb their food, and some are carnivorous.
For example, the Venus Fly Trap catches live prey, liquefies it, and
uses it for nutrition.

Three Reasons that Angiosperms are Successful:


1. Saprophyte (2n) stage dominates their lifecycle.
2. Seeds are packaged in fruits, which provide them with
Dispersal- fruits can move far away from parent plant
Protection- fruit cushions the seed and surrounds it
3. Reproductive structure called flowers. Flowers use the brain of an animal
rather than the wind to carry the pollen

Two classifications of flowering plants:

Monocots-35,000 species
• include grasses, palms, lilies, orchids, corn, wheat
• flower parts- petals are three or in multiples of three
• leaf veins- leaves have parallel veins.
• pollen- grains of pollen have a groove (furrow) or a hole (pore)
• After 12,000 years ago, agriculture caused the pollen found in the kitchens
of ancient people to be primarily pollen from monocot plants (Ex: Wheat vs.
berries as a primary food source).

Dicots -200,000 species


• include berries, fruits, shrubs,
• flower parts-petals are in 4 or 5 or multiples of four or five
• leaf veins- veins are networked and not parallel
• pollen- has three grooves (furrows) or 3 holes (pores)
• Prior to 12,000 years ago, agriculture caused the pollen found in the
kitchens of ancient people to be primarily pollen from dicot plants.

We eat many parts of flowering plants.


• leaves: herbs, spices, greens, teas,
• roots: carrots, potatoes, turnips
• fruits: apples, bananas, oranges
• flowers: pansies, squash blossoms, other edible flowers

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