Fascinating reproduction methods in plants

Plants are categorized depending on two reproductive systems, such as spores or seeds. The result of the reproduction is to continue with their species. Reproduction in plants can fall into two categories, sexual or asexual. The process of reproduction by the fusion of gametes to form offspring is known as sexual reproduction. The process which takes place without the fusion of the gametes is known as asexual reproduction. 

Reproduction by seeds 

In seed plants, unique structures are there, like female and male cells, which join to form a new species called fertilization. An embryo formed after fertilization is enveloped by a seed, which stores the food. After that, the parent plant releases the seed, and if it lands appropriately, it generates and grows into a plant. Two categories of plants are with flowers called angiosperms, and cones are gymnosperms. 

Plants with flowers: Angiosperms

Flowers, in this particular form of reproduction, contain pollen, a male part, with an ovule, a female part. Plants can have ovules and pollen in different flowers or the same. And the insects, wind, or any other animals carry the pollen from the male part to the female. 

After that, the male gametes fertilize the female gametes, developing into a seed where a new plant grows. In some plants, a part of the flower becomes a fruit and contains the seeds inside. Many flowering plants are near you, and at times, you might not recognize them as having flowers, such as flax, kowhai. Some of the examples are nuts, oranges, etc.  

Plants with cones: Gymnosperms

The seed plants, where the seed is at the cones, Gymnosperms, and the best example, is a pine cone. Pollen, the male cones are carried by the wind to the female cones. After the fertilization takes place between male and female cones, they get scattered by animals or winds. 

Plants by spores 

In a plant kingdom, a group of cells, modified or differentiated, come to function in sexual reproduction. Liverworts, ferns, green algae, and mosses are plants with spores and follow a unique life cycle. The tiny spires are sent out by a parent plant known as chromosomes, and they do not have an embryo. The fertilization takes place away from the parent and in a damp location, giving rise to the embryo. After that, from the embryo, a new plant will form. It is also known as reproduction by specific asexual structures. 

Some of the examples of this category are horizontal or elongated runners, stolons, such as strawberry, when coming in contact with moist soil surface gives birth to a new plant. 

Double fertilization 

In double fertilization, two cells are fertilized, where one sperm nucleus fuses with the egg cells in the embryo, while the other sperm fuses with the diploid endosperm nucleus. A zygote is the fertilized egg cell developing into the diploid embryo of the sporophyte. The triploid endosperm is developed by the fertilization of the endosperm nucleus. The plant that goes for double fertilization is the “Gnetales in the genus Ephedra” with a non-flowering seed plant.

Reproduction by fragments

In some plants, fragmentation of a plant body leads to the development of an entire new offspring. Well, it is a common horticultural practice done by various garden plants like cuttings or fragments. It can be stems, roots, plant cuttings, etc. However, the naturally falling leaves, stems are not considered to be in suitable condition to start the process. Other horticulture practices and is the best example of asexual reproduction is budding, grafting, etc. 

Isn’t it fascinating to see the behaviour of plants to keep up their offspring and reproduce? 

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