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➢ Scope: Fruit and seed – definition and significance. Structure and germination of Bean seed
and Maize grain, difference between monocot & dicot seeds and hypogeal & epigeal
germination, conditions for seed germination, explained and supported by experiments.

➢ Fruit:
o Definition: Matured ripened ovary containing the seed.
o Function/significance:
▪ Protects the seeds.
▪ Helps in seed dispersal by attracting animals or drying and bursting
under pressure to release the seeds.
o Ex: Mango, pea pod.

➢ Seeds:
o Definition: A fertilized matured ovule enclosing an embryonic plant.
o Function/significance of seed:
▪ It encloses a new plant, marking the beginning of a new generation.
▪ It acts as a means of perennation to tide over the unfavorable climatic conditions.
o Seed contains:
▪ Seed coat: Testa, tegmen, micropyle and hilum.
▪ Embryo: plumule, radicle, cotyledons.
▪ Endosperm.
o Definition:
▪ Embryo is the early stage of development.
▪ Endosperm is a nutritive tissue surrounding the embryo.
▪ Grains are one seeded fruit.

➢ Classification of seeds:
o Based on number of cotyledons:
Monocotyledonous Dicotyledonous
Definition Seeds which contain one Seeds which contain two
cotyledon. cotyledons.
Example Maize, grass, rice, wheat, etc. Pea, gram, bean, etc.
o Based on presence of endosperm:
Albuminous/ endospermic Exalbuminous/ non-endospermic
Definition Seeds with endosperm. Seeds without endosperm.
Characteristics Cotyledons are thin and papery. Cotyledons are thick, fleshy and
Endosperm stores food. stores food as endosperm absent.
Ex: Dicot Poppy, custard apple, castor. Gram, pea, mango, mustard.
Ex: Monocot Cereals (rice, maize, wheat), Vallisneria, Orchids,
millets, palm. amorphophallus.

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➢ Structure of Bean and Maize seed:

Bean seed Maize seed


Seed coat Has two layers of protective The maize grain is one seeded fruit.
covering called testa and tegmen. The fruit wall and the seed coat are fused
Testa: The outermost hard together to form a protective layer.
brownish covering of seed. Therefore, called a grain.
Tegmen: Inner thin pale yellow
covering of seed.
Function: Protects the embryo
from injury and infection.
Hilum It is a distinct oval scar on the No distinct hilum.
concave side of the seed. On one side of the grain there is a small
It represents the point of light colored oval area that represents the
attachment of the seed as an ovule location of the embryo inside.
with the placenta in the ovary.
Micropyle It is a small aperture. Micropyle absent.
It represents the opening through
which the pollen tube entered the
ovule during fertilization.
Function: Allows diffusion of water
and respiratory gases for the
growing embryo.

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Endosperm Endosperm absent. A large endosperm is present, towards the
broader side.
Aleurone layer: It is the outermost layer
containing protein.
Epithelium: A thin layer separates
endosperm from embryo.
Function: It stores food in the form of
Cotyledons Two in number, thick and fleshy. One large, shield shaped cotyledon
Location: Under the seed coat present called Scutellum.
Function: Contains food for Its thin and does not store food.
Embryo Embryo consists of radicle and Embryo consists of radicle, plumule and
plumule. cotyledons.
Location: Attached to the Location: Below the endosperm towards
cotyledons. the pointed end of the seed.
Function: Grows into a new plant. Function: Grows into a new plant.
Radicle It consists of a pair of tiny leaves it is enclosed in a protective sheath, called
and hypocotyl. coleorhiza.
Location: Below the embryonic Location: Towards the pointed end of the
axis in the seed. maize seed.
Function: It gives rise to primary Function: It gives rise to primary root
root system. system.
Plumule It consists of a short stem and It is enclosed in a protective sheath,
epicotyl. called coleoptile.
Location: Above the embryonic Location: Towards the upper
axis in the seed. broader side of the embryonic
Function: It give rise to the shoot region of the maize seed.
system. Function: It give rise to the shoot system.
Summary 1. Two cotyledons. 1. One cotyledon.
2. No endosperm. 2. Large endosperm present.
3. Large embryo. 3. Small embryo.
4. Plumule large and leaves folded. 4. Plumule very small and leaves rolled.
5. Hilum and micropyle visible. 5. Hilum and micropyle not visible.
6. Seed separately contained in 6. The seed wall and the fruit wall fused
the fruit called pod. to form a single grain.

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➢ Germination:
o Germination is the process of development of an embryo into a seedling.
o A dormant seed is a newly formed seed in which an embryo matures, tissue
differentiation occurs and all physiological activity slows down, until
favorable environmental conditions for germination arises.
o Dormancy: A stage in which a seed fails to germinate even if environmental
conditions are met with, due to its ongoing internal morphological changes.
➢ Condition for germination:
o There are three conditions necessary for Germination: Water, oxygen and
suitable temperature.
o Seeds sown very deep in soil fail to germinate.
▪ Reason: Poor supply of oxygen and insufficient pushing force in the
embryonic parts to break through the upper layers of soil.

➢ Types of Germination:

o There are three types of germination: Hypogeal, Epigeal and vivipary.

Hypogeal germination Epigeal germination
Cotyledons remain underground. Cotyledons push above the ground.
Epicotyl elongates. Hypocotyl elongates.
Endosperms supplies food till true Cotyledons turn green and make food.
leaves are formed. After true leaves cotyledons dry and
fall off.
Mostly occurs in monocot seeds. Mostly occurs in dicot seeds.
Eg. Gram, maize, rice, etc. Eg. Castor, bean, gourd, cotton,
tamarind, pea, etc.

o Comparative study of Germination in Maize seed and Bean seed:

Maize Seed Bean Seed

The grain absorbs water and swells. The seed absorbs water and swells.
Epithelial layer secretes enzymes to The seed coat bursts and remains in
convert starch into sugar in the the ground.

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Scutellum remains underground. Cotyledons are pulled up by hypocotyl,
It absorbs food from the endosperm becomes the first green leaves and fall
and passes it to radicle and plumule. off after the foliage leaves grows.
Hypocotyl does not elongate. Hypocotyl arches, elongates and grows
Radicle pierces through coleorhiza, upwards, then straightens bringing the
pericarp and testa and grows cotyledons above the soil.
downwards. Radicle grows downwards to from the
It forms the short lived primary root root system.
system, which is replaced by
adventitious root system.
Epicotyl elongates and comes out. Epicotyl does not elongate.
Plumule pierces through coleoptile, Plumule gets pulled up by the
pericarp and testa and grows straight hypocotyl, straightens and forms the
upwards. shoot system.

o Vivipary Germination:
▪ The seeds inside the fruit germinates while still attached to the parent plant.
▪ The embryo grows out of the seed and fruit and projects as a seedling
along with roots and hypocotyl.
▪ As it grows its weight increases, the seedling separates and falls on
the mud below and starts growing.
▪ Ex: Rhizophora, Sooneratia, etc.

➢ Seedling:
o Germination of seed forms a new plant which starts its life as a seedling.
o Definition: Seedling is a stage in the growth of a plant from a seed before it
becomes fully independent and starts making its own food.
o Seedling progresses to a plant, as:
▪ The root starts to absorb water and minerals from the soil.
▪ The leaves start manufacturing food and the young plant grows and matures to
produce flowers and seeds in its turn.


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