Botany for Gardeners, Rev Ed by Brian Capon

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By Brian Capon

A bestseller seeing that its debut in 1990, this fundamental and convenient reference has now been multiplied and up to date to incorporate an appendix on plant taxonomy and a complete index. dozen new pictures and illustrations make this re-creation even richer with details. Its handy paperback structure makes it effortless to hold and entry, no matter if you're in or out of the backyard. a necessary evaluate of the technology at the back of crops for starting and complex gardeners alike.

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They also tend to be lighter in weight and, therefore, require less support from their stems. The leaflets of a pinnately compound leaf (from Latin for “featherlike”) are arranged along a central axis; those of a palmately compound leaf arise from one point at the tip of the petiole, like fingers of an outstretched hand. Similar descriptions are given to vein patterns within leaf blades: pinnate venation and palmate venation, in addition to a parallel arrangement that is most common in the leaves of monocots (grasses, palms, and irises, for example).

It is called allelopathy (Greek: “mutual suffering”) and is accomplished by saturation of the surrounding soil with chemicals washed out of fallen leaves and twigs from the defensive plant. In a few cases, roots are believed to excrete allelochemicals, which explains the inability of farmers to grow other crops near walnut trees. Allelopathy is an interesting phenomenon that could be used in developing natural weed killers and in the selection of crops for mixed interplanting. Although seeds may seem to be asleep as they lay in the soil, they are fully responsive to changes in their environment.

In the fascinating and beautiful microscopic world within a plant, organization can be seen at its best. A plant is composed of countless cells having various dimensions, shapes, and individual characteristics such as cell wall thickness, being alive or dead at maturity, or having chloroplasts present or absent. These special features determine the specific function of each cell. Distinctive cell types are not randomly arranged in leaves, roots, or stems but in groups called tissues. Collectively, the cells carry out their specialized activity more effectively than do individual cells.

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