6.1 The Tissues 6.2 The Tissue System 6.3 Anatomy of Dicotyledonous and Monocotyledonous Plants 6.4 Secondary Growth You can very easily see the structural similarities and variations in the external morphology of the larger living organism, both plants and animals. Similarly, if we were to study the internal structure, one also finds several similarities as well as differences. This chapter introduces you to the internal structure and functional organisation of higher plants. Study of internal structure of plants is called anatomy. Plants have cells as the basic unit, cells are organised into tissues and in turn the tissues are organised into organs. Different organs in a plant show differences in their internal structure. Within angiosperms, the monocots and dicots are also seen to be anatomically different. Internal structures also show adaptations to diverse environments. 6.1 THE TISSUES A tissue is a group of cells having a common origin and usually performing a common function. A plant is made up of different kinds of tissues. Tissues are classified into two main groups, namely, meristematic and permanent tissues based on whether the cells being formed are capable of dividing or not. 6.1.1 Meristematic Tissues Growth in plants is largely restricted to specialised regions of active cell division called meristems (Gk. meristos: divided). Plants have different kinds of meristems. The meristems which occur at the tips of roots and shoots and produce primary tissues are called apical meristems (Figure 6.1). ANATOMYOF FLOWERING PLANTS narrow cavities (lumen). These are commonly found in the fruit walls of nuts; pulp of fruits like guava, pear and sapota; seed coats of legumes and leaves of tea. Sclerenchyma provides mechanical support to organs. 18.104.22.168 Complex Tissues The complex tissues are made of more than one type of cells and these work together as a unit. Xylem and phloem constitute the complex tissues in plants (Figure 6.3). Xylem functions as a conducting tissue for water and minerals from roots to the stem and leaves. It also provides mechanical strength to the plant parts. It is composed of four different kinds of elements, namely, tracheids, vessels, xylem fibres and xylem parenchyma. Gymnosperms lack vessels in their xylem. Tracheids are elongated or tube like cells with thick and lignified walls and tapering ends. These are dead and are without protoplasm. The inner layers of the cell walls have thickenings which vary in form. In flowering plants, tracheids and vessels are the main water transporting elements. Vessel is a long cylindrical tube-like structure made up of many cells called vessel members, each with lignified walls and a large central cavity. The vessel cells are also devoid of protoplasm. Vessel members are interconnected through perforations in their common walls. The presence of vessels is a characteristic feature of angiosperms. Xylem fibres have highly thickened walls and obliterated central lumens. These may either be septate or aseptate. Xylem parenchyma cells are living and thin-walled, and their cell walls are made up of cellulose. They store food materials in the form of starch or fat, and other substances like tannins. The radial conduction of water takes place by the ray parenchymatous cells. Primary xylem is of two types –protoxylem andmetaxylem. The first formed primary xylem elements are called protoxylem and the later formed primary xylem is called metaxylem. In stems, the protoxylem lies towards the centre (pith) and the metaxylem lies towards the periphery of the organ. This type of primary xylem is called endarch. In roots, the protoxylem lies towards periphery and metaxylem lies towards the centre. Such arrangement of primary xylem is called exarch. Phloem transports food materials, usually from leaves to other parts of the plant. Phloem in angiosperms is composed of sieve tube elements,companion cells, phloem parenchyma Tracheid Vessels (a) Sieve pore Sieve tube element Phloem parenchyma Companion cell (b) Figure 6.3 (a) Xylem (b) Phloem 90 BIOLOGY Figure 6.5 Various types of vascular bundles : (a) radial (b) conjoint closed (c) conjoint open 6.2.3 The Vascular Tissue System The vascular system consists of complex tissues, the phloem and the xylem.The xylem and phloem together constitute vascular bundles (Figure 6.5). In dicotyledonous stems, cambium is present between phloem and xylem. Such vascular bundles because of the presence of cambium possess the ability to form secondary xylem and phloem tissues, and hence are called open vascular bundles. In the monocotyledons, the vascular bundles have no cambium present in them. Hence, since they do not form secondary tissues they are referred to as closed. When xylem and phloem within a vascular bundle are arranged in an alternate manner on different radii, the arrangement is called radial such as in roots. In conjoint type of vascular bundles, the xylem and phloem are situated at the same radius of vascular bundles. Such vascular bundles are common in stems and leaves. The conjoint vascular bundles usually have the phloem located only on the outer side of xylem. 6.3 ANATOMY OF DICOTYLEDONOUS AND MONOCOTYLEDONOUS PLANTS For a better understanding of tissue organisation of roots, stems and leaves, it is convenient to study the transverse sections of the mature zones of these organs. 6.3.1 Dicotyledonous Root Look at Figure 6.6 (a), it shows the transverse section of the sunflower root. The internal tissue organisation is as follows: The outermost layer is epidermis.Many of the epidermal cells protrude in the form of unicellular root hairs. The cortex consists of several layers of thin-walled parenchyma cells The cells of medullary rays, adjoining these intrafascicular cambium become meristematic and form the interfascicular cambium. Thus, a continuous ring of cambium is formed. 22.214.171.124 Activity of the cambial ring The cambial ring becomes active and begins to cut off new cells, both towards the inner and the outer sides. The cells cut off towards pith, mature into secondary xylem and the cells cut off towards periphery mature into secondary phloem. The cambium is generally more active on the inner side than on the outer. As a result, the amount of secondary xylem produced is more than secondary phloem and soon forms a compact mass. The primary and secondary phloems get gradually crushed due to the continued formation and accumulation of secondary xylem. The primary xylem however remains more or less intact, in or around the centre. At some places, the cambium forms a narrow band of parenchyma, which passes through the secondary xylem and the secondary phloem in the radial directions. These are the secondary medullary rays (Figure 6.9). BIOLOGY 126.96.36.199 Spring wood and autumn wood The activity of cambium is under the control of many physiological and environmental factors. In temperate regions, the climatic conditions are not uniform through the year. In the spring season, cambium is very active and produces a large number of xylary elements having vessels with wider cavities. The wood formed during this season is called spring wood or early wood. In winter, the cambium is less active and forms fewer xylary elements that have narrow vessels, and this wood is called autumn wood or late wood. The spring wood is lighter in colour and has a lower density whereas the autumn wood is darker and has a higher density. The two kinds of woods that appear as alternate concentric rings, constitute an annual ring. Annual rings seen in a cut stem give an estimate of the age of the tree. 188.8.131.52 Heartwood and sapwood In old trees, the greater part of secondary xylem is dark brown due to deposition of organic compounds like tannins, resins, oils, gums, aromatic substances and essential oils in the central or innermost layers of the stem. These substances make it hard, durable and resistant to the attacks of microorganisms and insects. This region comprises dead elements with highly lignified walls and is called heartwood. The heartwood does not conduct water but it gives mechanical support to the stem. The peripheral region of the secondary xylem, is lighter in colour and is known as the sapwood.It is involved in the conduction of water and minerals from root to leaf. 6.4.2 Cork Cambium As the stem continues to increase in girth due to the activity of vascular cambium, the outer cortical and epidermis layers get broken and need to be replaced to provide new protective cell layers. Hence, sooner or later, another meristematic tissue called cork cambium or phellogen develops, usually in the cortex region. Phellogen is a couple of layers thick. It is made of narrow, thin-walled and nearly rectangular cells. Phellogen cuts off cells on both sides. The outer cells differentiate into cork or phellem while the inner cells differentiate into secondary cortex or phelloderm. The cork is impervious to water due to suberin deposition in the cell wall. The cells of secondary cortex are parenchymatous. Phellogen, phellem, and phelloderm are collectively known as periderm. Due to activity of the cork cambium, pressure builds up on the remaining layers peripheral BIOLOGYFigure 6.11 Different stages of the secondary growth in a typical dicot root Secondary growth also occurs in stems and roots of gymnosperms. However, secondary growth does not occur in monocotyledons. SUMMARY Anatomically, a plant is made of different kinds of tissues. The plant tissues are minerals and food material.