Aerial modifications

Aerial modifications:

In certain plants, stem undergoes modification to a huge degree to execute some special functions. These are:

a. Tendrils
b. Phylloclade
c. Thorns
d. Bulbil
e. Cladode


These are flattened, green, or cylindrical stems with nodes and internodes. The leaves are transformed to spines to decrease the loss of water by transpiration as these plants grow in xerophytic circumstances. The stem becomes flat like leaf and executes the functions of photosynthesis. Example: Opuntia. In this the phylloclade that is, the stem executing the function of leaf becomes succulent due to the storage of food and water.


 Figure: Phylloclade & Cladode


These are cylindrical, green, or flattened stem branches of fixed growth. These are generally of one internode as in Asparagus. Their stem nature is obvious by the fact that they bear scales, buds, and flowers.

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