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The two groups of angiosperms are monocots and dicots.
monocot, dicotyledon, tulip, loosestrife, parallel-veined leaves, net-veined leaf, fibrous root system, taproot system, angiosperm, flower, stem, stamen, petal, tepal, sepal, root, leaf, plant organs, gynoecium, vascular bundle, cambium, xylem, phloem, cotyledon, perianth, plant, biology
Within the group of angiosperms, plants are grouped by the number of cotyledons in the seed. There are dicotyledons, or dicots, and monocotyledons, or monocots.
Dicots usually have taproot systems, which consist of a central root, called the taproot, with lateral roots branching out. Monocots typically have fibrous root systems.
But usually the easiest way to differentiate between monocot and dicot plants is to compare their leaves. Dicots have net-veined leaves with secondary veins branching out from a primary vein; the leaves are attached to the stem by petioles. Most monocots, however, have parallel-veined leaves that are attached to the stem by leaf sheaths, that is, their base surrounds the stem.
A dicot stem often branches, while a monocot stem does not typically branch out.
There are also differences in the structure of dicot and monocot flowers. In dicot flowers the perianth is differentiated, it consists of petals and a sepal, the flowers display pentamerous radial symmetry, meaning, the number of their components can be divided by five. Yellow pimpernel flowers, for example, consist of five sepals, five petals and five stamens. In monocot flowers, however, the perianth is homogenous, it consists of tepals. Monocot flowers display trimerous radial symmetry, that is, the number of their tepals can be divided by three. Tulip flowers consist of six tepals and six stamens.
Vascular bundles are arranged in a ring in the stems of herbaceous dicots, while they are scattered in monocots.
In the vascular bundle, the xylem conducts water and dissolved minerals from the roots to the other parts of the plants, while the phloem conducts organic substances.
The vascular bundles in herbaceous dicots contain a cambium layer between the phloem and the xylem, responsible for the growth of the stem. The vascular bundles in monocots do not typically contain cambium, so their stem cannot become thicker.
Dicots appeared at an earlier stage of evolution. About 200 thousand known herbaceous and woody plants belong to this group, while there are about 60 thousand monocot species.
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