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Plant Life Cycles
Transcript of Plant Life Cycles
Annual Plants have a variety of different life cycles, some grow from seeds, flower and fruit in one year before dying off, whereas some plants have much longer-term strategies. EPHEMERAL PLANTS Ephemeral plants have several short life cycles in a growing season. 'Ephemeral' means 'quick fading' Ephemeral plants can increase in numbers rapidly. Seed Germination Growth Roots Stems Leaves Flowers Fruits Reproductive Vegetative There are three main ephemeral strategies that you need to be aware of:
Weedy ephemeral Spring Ephemeral This strategy is used by woodland wildflowers that develop stems, leaves and flowers early each spring, bloom and produce seed. These plants leave underground structures such as roots/rhizomes and bulbs for the remaining year. This strategy allows plants to take advantage of a lack of canopy in the spring - this maximises the sunlight reaching the forest floor. Desert Ephemeral These are desert plants adapted to take advantage of short, favourable seasons in deserts (short periods of rainfall). The plants survive through the dry seasons through seed
the death of
that will develop
improve. Weedy Ephemeral Agricultural disturbance (activities such as ploughing) can allow agricultural weeds to exploit the conditions (improved aeration of soil, increase in surface light etc). These plants have short life-spans, rapid rates of growth and high levels of seed production. Examples of Ephemeral Plants Dwarf-crested Iris Trillium Spring Beauty Virginia Bluebells Harbinger of Spring BIENNIAL PLANTS Biennial plants have a life cycle that spans two growing seasons (years). In year one, the plant completes its initial vegetative growth - roots and stem. The plant is dormant over the winter. In year two, the plant grows rapidly, flowers, fruits and seeds before dying. Seed Germination Growth Roots Stems Leaves Flowers Fruits Reproductive Vegetative YEAR ONE YEAR TWO Dormancy (winter) Examples of Biennial Plants Sweet William Parsley Hollyhocks Silverbeet PERENNIAL PLANTS Perennial plants live through several (or many) growing seasons. Woody shrubs and trees are examples of perennial plants. Perennial plants tend to reproduce by vegetative means (bulbs, tubers, rhizomes) rather than seeding. Perennial plants are dormant over the winter months - trees shed their leaves. Seed Vegetative Growth Flower Dormancy Death ANNUAL PLANTS Annual plants complete their life cycle in one growing season. Most plants that are grown to supply food are grown as annuals (from seed to crop within one year). Seed-to-seed annuals can take as little as one month to reach the point of harvest but most are sown (planted) in spring and harvested in autumn. Summer Annuals These plants sprout, flower, seed and die in the warmer months of the year. Winter Annuals These plants germinate in autumn/winter, live through the winter and bloom in spring.
These plants grow when most plants are dormant to take advantage of the lack of competition. Seed Vegetative Growth Flower Death Examples of Annual Plants Corn Wheat Rice Watermelon Examples of Perennial Plants Asparagus Apple Pear Plum TASK 1: Produce four storyboards that demonstrate the life cycles of:
Include diagrams, descriptions and examples of plants. P6