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Introduction to Plants
Botany and Ecology
Warm Up:
• Describe your experience growing
plants throughout your life. Would
you consider yourself to be a novice,
intermediate, or experienced
gardener? How do you think this
will impact your performance in this
• Comes from the Greek word
for “Plant”
• 1600’s: people began
conducting experiments to
see how plants grow
Botany includes:
• Plant systematics
• Evolutionary
history of plants
• Plant anatomy
and physiology
• Plant
• Plant ecology
• Plant genetics
Why Study Plants?
• Photosynthesis Sustains Life on
• Medicines
• Fuel, Shelter, Paper Products
• Why else?
1. Plants are Multicellular Eukaryotes
• Multicellular
–Composed of many cells
• Eukaryotes
–Cells have a nucleus which
contains the DNA
2. Almost all plants are capable of
• Known as autotrophs
• Make their own food
• Distinguishes plants from
mushrooms (not plants,
kingdom Fungi)
Plants to avoid when we work
around the school grounds…
Poison Ivy
Stinging Nettle
3. Plants have cell walls composed
of cellulose
• Cellulose a.k.a. Fiber
• A chain of glucose molecules
• Gives structure and support to
cell walls
4. Plants have 2 Adult Forms of
• Spores
–Reproductive cells that can reproduce
• Pollen and Egg (male and female parts)
–Pollen fertilizes egg to produce an
embryo (seed) that develops into an
A variety of seeds
5. Plants have a multicellular
embryo protected within the
female parent (seed)
• Prevents embryo from drying out
• Distinguishes plants from algae
(even though they have chlorophyll
most algae are classified as kingdom
Some Plants We will Study
• Gymnosperms
–Non-flowering seed plants (ferns, pines)
• Angiosperms
–Flowering seed plants
In a seed plant…
• The embryo is a miniature plant in an
arrested state of development. It will begin
to grow when conditions are favorable.
• The endosperm is a built-in food supply
which can be made up of proteins,
carbohydrates, or fats.
• The seed coat, a hard outer covering,
protects the seed from disease and insects. It
also prevents water from entering the seed
and initiating germination before the proper
Plant Cell Diagram
• Color all of the cell organelles, following
the directions colors for each structure.
• Write the function of the following parts
on your diagram:
• Cell wall, plasma (cell) membrane,
cytoplasm, nucleus, nucleolus,
chloroplast, mitochondrion, vacuole,
ribosome, endoplasmic reticulum
Warm Up
• Recall the plant cell…
–What 3 things make a plant
cell different
from an animal
• They make their own food
• No cell wall in animals
• They contain chloroplasts
Vascular Tissue System
• What does “vascular” make you
think of? Can you guess what this
system does?
• A continuous system of tissues that
conduct water, minerals, and food
• Brings water and mineral nutrients
from the roots to the rest of the
• Forms a tube for water transport
• Moves sugars and other organic
nutrients from the leaves to the rest of
the plant
• Photosynthesis takes place in the leaf, so
the phloem transports it to where it’s
Plants grow at Meristems!
• Parts of the plant
that grow through
Cell Division!
• Tips of roots, ends
of branches
Warm Up
What part of a plant GROWS?
A. The trunk, from the bottom up
B. The roots, from the top down
C. The branches, from the ends
D. The roots, from the tips
E. A & B
F. C & D
G. All of the above
Leaf Characteristic Lab
• Choose 5 different leaves to examine Draw a
detailed diagram of each leaf.
• What differences do you notice between the
variety of leaves?