Understanding the life cycle of a plant can lead to a better success growing them.
Understanding how seeds develop can mean the difference between successful seed starting and failure.
Put the two parts together and they equal a formula for success.
Plants have several parts that we are all familiar with, the roots, the stem, leaves, flowers, fruits and seeds.
The roots are necessary because they anchor the plant in the soil, absorb water and substances that are dissolved in water.
Once these substances are absorbed, the roots help these substances get to the stem of the plant.
The leaves contain veins which the plant uses to move soluble foods.
The leaves also absorb energy which is received in the form of light rays from the sun.
The flowers not only make the plant desirable but are necessary so that fruit, vegetables or seeds can be formed.
These parts are all necessary for the plant to grow, produce and then reproduce.
How Seeds Develop
The development of a seed is a great experiment for both children and adults.
It is an easy experiment that does not require a lot of time or expense and will reward you with a plant.
The easiest way to conduct this experiment is to choose a seed such as a bean or corn seed and use damp paper towels to germinate the seed.
Sometimes it is necessary to soak a seed in water overnight to remove the membranous seed coat which protects the embryo.
The embryo is the living part of the seed. It contains two thick fleshy seed leaves known as cotyledons.
A large amount of food is stored in these leaves so when the seed germinates it has a chance to survive.
The two cotyledons will fall off as the true leaves begin to emerge.
If the conditions are favorable the seed will germinate.
In order for a seed to germinate it needs moisture.
Some seeds require a certain temperature to germinate.
For example, most perennials need a chilling period and tropical seeds need warmth.
Seeds also need either light or dark to germinate.
The light requirements will vary according to the type of seed.
As the seed grows a primary root will grow into the soil from which branch roots will arise.
The part above the soil known as the hypocotyl will eventually form the basal part of the stem.
The epicotyl, which is the part of the stem the cotyledons are attached to will eventually begin to grow leaves.
As the plant grows and matures, flowers, fruits and seeds will be formed.
This is the life cycle of a plant.