By Brian Capon

A bestseller due to the fact that its debut in 1990, this crucial and convenient reference has now been increased and up to date to incorporate an appendix on plant taxonomy and a finished index. dozen new images and illustrations make this new version even richer with details. Its handy paperback layout makes it effortless to hold and entry, even if you're in or out of the backyard. a vital review of the technological know-how in the back of vegetation for starting and complex gardeners alike.

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The most obvious features of a young stem are bundles of vascular tissues, held in place by the surrounding pith and cortex. The word vascular is derived from the Latin vasculum, “little vessel,” and refers to the fact that water, minerals, and food molecules are transported through ductlike cells in plants. The inner half of each vascular bundle consists of large, water-conducting cells of xylem tissue; toward the outside are food-conducting phloem cells that are smaller. These vital tissues form pipelines of fluid transport, connecting leaves, stems, and roots.

We still do not understand how plants achieve such an amazing variety of leaf 034-052_Botany 11/8/04 11:25 AM Page 49 Roots and Shoots blade 49 blade midrib axillary bud petiole axillary bud b a leaflet Leaf parts: (a) simple, petiolate leaf (b) sessile leaf (c) compound leaf petiole stipule c shapes during the course of their development—from primordia that all start out looking very much the same to each species’ distinctive leaf pattern. A leaf’s unique features slowly emerge as blade and petiole expand to their full measure of growth.

How did the tree trunk undergo changes of such magnitude? The answer lies in the activity of two lateral meristems—vascular cambium, mentioned above, and, after the stem has begun to thicken, a cork cambium. The cork cambium is responsible for the formation of cork, the outer tissue of the tree’s bark. 59 053-082_Botany 11/8/04 11:37 AM Page 60 60 CHAPTER 3 A two-year-old woody stem. Two concentric rings of secondary xylem (light pink) surround the central pith. Secondary phloem (dark pink) forms a band around the xylem and, on the outside, redstained cork covers the stem.

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