Have you somehow stumbled across the terms, monocots and dicots, and wonder how they pertain to the tree care industry? Well if so, you have come to the right place. Continue reading to learn the difference between these two important biological organisms, as well as, how they apply to your particular landscaping goals.
In our last blog, you learned the difference between angiosperms and gymnosperms. When it comes to monocots and dicots, angiosperms are the focus. Angiosperms are often considered the dominant plant-life on the planet because there are an estimated 250,000 to 400,000 species known to man. They are any type of flowering plant whose seeds (ovules) are enclosed in an ovary (usually a fruit). Angiosperms are conventional garden plants that bloom flowers from a hidden seed usually enclosed inside a fruit, which develops from carpels.
As mentioned, angiosperms are the emphasis when discussing monocots and dicots, as all flowering plants are one or the other. These two categories of angiosperms primarily represent the differences in the morphology of plant stems, leaves, flowers, and fruits. At a closer look, the basic chief difference between the two comes down to cotyledons. Cotyledons are embryo seed leaves that store and distribute nutrition to the embryo until it can use photosynthesis make its own food.
Monocots, or monocotyledons, have only one cotyledon. Examples include:
❦ Fruit Trees
Dicots, or dicotyledons, have two cotyledons. Examples common include:
❦ Apple Trees
Two Ways to Tell the Difference:
☑ Dicot leaves have branched veins. Monocot leaves are parallel.
☑ Dicot flowers have petals in multiples of 4’s or 5’s. Monocots bloom petals in 3’s or 4’s.
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