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Plant Printouts
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Botany and Paleobotany Dictionary
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Plants
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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G


GAMETANGIUM

(plural gametangia) A gametangium is a reproductive organ that is in some plants (especially algae, fungi, mosses, and ferns). The gametangium produces gametes (reproductive cells).

GAMETE

A gamete is the male or female reproductive cell of an organism (the sperm or the egg). Each gamete has only half the number of chromosomes that the other cells of that organism have (it is haploid).

GALLIC EPOCH

The Gallic epoch was the middle part of the Cretaceous period, about 127 million to 89 million years ago.


GASTROLITHS

(pronounced GAS-troh-liths) Gastroliths are stones that some animals swallow and use to help grind up tough plant matter in their digestive system. They're also called gizzard rocks.


GENOME

The genome of an organism is made up of the set of chromosomes that contain all of its genes.

GENUS

(pronounced GEE-nus) In classification, a genus is a group of related or similar organisms. A genus contains one or more species. A group of similar genera (the plural of genus) forms a family. In the scientific name of an organism, the first name is its genus (for example, people are Homo sapiens - our genus is Homo and our species is H. Sapiens).

GEOLOGICAL TIME

The history of the earth is described in geological time, which is measured in millions of years and billions of years. The divisions used are: eon, era, period, and epoch.

GEOLOGICAL TIME PERIODS

Geologic time is divided into divisions based on some distinguishing feature of that time (like an Ice Age). The divisions used are: eon, era, period, epoch, and age.

GEOLOGY

Geology is the study of the Earth's structure, including rocks.

GEOTROPISM

Geotropism is a plant's reaction to gravity in which the roots go towards the pull of gravity, and the shoots go in the opposite direction.

GERMINATION

Germination is the beginning of growth of a plant from its seed.

GIGANTOPTERID

Gigantopterids were ancient seed plants that lived during the Permian period, over 250 million years ago. It is thought that the gigantopterids evolved into the flowering plants. One species of gigantopterid is the broad-leafed climbing plant Vasovinea tianiia; it was found in 1993 in China.

GINKGO or GINGKO

Ginkgo or Gingko (also called the maidenhair tree) is a primitive seed-bearing tree (a gymnosperm) that was common during the Mesozoic Era, but has only one existing species now. Ginkgos peaked during the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. This deciduous (losing its leaves in cold weather) tree has fan-shaped leaves divided into two lobes. Classification: Division Pinophyta (Gymnosperms) , Subdivision Pinicae, Class Pinopsida, Order Ginkgoales, Family Ginkgoaceae (ginkgos).

GIZZARD ROCKS

Gizzard rocks are stones that some animals swallow and use to help grind up tough plant matter in their digestive system. They're also called gastroliths.

GLABROUS

A glabrous surface lacks hairs (and has a smooth surface).

GLOCHID

Glochids are tufts of short, barbed spines that are found at the areoles of opuntia cacti.


GLOSSOPTERIS

Glossopteris (from the Greek glossa, meaning tongue, because the leaves were tongue shaped) is a genus of extinct seed fern (a Pteriosperm) whose fossils are found throughout India, South America, southern Africa, Australia, and Antarctica. Glossopteris was about 12 ft (3.6 m) tall. The distribution of this fossil plant throughout the southern hemisphere led the Austrian geologist Eduard Suess to deduce that there had once been a land bridge between these areas. He named this large land mass Gondwanaland (named after a district in India where the plant Glossopteris was found). This was the southern supercontinent formed after Pangaea broke up during the Jurassic period. It included what are now the continents South America, Africa, India, Australia, and Antarctica. These deciduous (losing their leaves in the cool season) gymnosperms arose during the late Permian and became dominant, but went extinct by the end of the Triassic period.

GOLGI BODY

(also called the Golgi apparatus or Golgi complex) a flattened, layered, sac-like organelle that looks like a stack of pancakes and is located near the nucleus. It produces the membranes that surround the lysosomes. The Golgi body packages proteins and carbohydrates into membrane-bound vesicles for "export" from the cell.
Laurasia

GONDWANALAND

Gondwanaland, also known as Gondwana, was the southern supercontinent formed after Pangaea broke up during the Jurassic period. It included what are now the continents South America, Africa, India, Australia, and Antarctica. Gondwanaland was named for a district in India where the fossil plant Glossopteris was found; this plant led E. Suess to deduce that the southern continents were once joined, supporting Wegener's continental drift theory

GRAFT

A graft is a shoot or bud that has been joined to another plant.

GRAIN

A grain is a single particle of pollen.

GRANUM

(plural grana) A stack of thylakoid disks within the chloroplast is called a granum.

GRASS

Grasses are a group of flowering plants (angiosperms) that belong to the family Graminae. Classification: Division Magnoliophyta (angioperms), Class Magnoliopsida (dicots), Class Liliopsida (monocots), Subclass Commelinidae (grasses, sedges and rushes, Order Cyperales, Family Poaceae (Gramineae) (grasses).

GRAZER

A grazer is an animal that eats low-lying vegetation, such as grasses and other low plants.

GRAZING FOOD CHAIN

The grazing food chain is a model that describes the flow of organic energy through organisms in an ecosystem. A trophic level is a level of this grazing food chain. Plants (called primary producers) occupy the first trophic level. Plant-eaters (also called primary consumers) occupy the second trophic level in the grazing food chain. The third level contains animals that eat primary consumers (first-level carnivores = secondary consumers). The fourth trophic level contains tertiary consumers, generally larger animals (like eagles) that eat primary consumers.


GREENHOUSE EFFECT

The greenhouse effect is an increase in the temperature of a planet as heat energy from sunlight is trapped in the atmosphere. Excess carbon dioxide and water vapor increase this effect. The greenhouse effect is strong on Earth, maintaining (and possible exacerbating) warm temperatures.

GREEN REVOLUTION

The green revolution was a dramatic increase in agricultural yields that occurred in the 1950s through 1960s. The green revolution was based upon many improvements in plant science, including the genetic improvement of many plants (including new, high-yield hybrid varieties), improved irrigation, more efficient machinery, new fertilizers, and pest controls that increased plants' disease-resistance, improved their hardiness, and increased their productivity (especially rice, wheat, and corn).

GUARD CELL

Each stoma has two crescent-shaped guard cells that control the size of the opening of the stoma using turgor pressure. This changes the amount of water vapor and other gases that can enter and leave the plant.

GUM

Gum is a sticky substance that is secreted by some plants. Gum hardens when it dries.

GYMNOSPERM

Gymnosperms (meaning "naked seeds") are seed-bearing plants that don't produce flowers. These plants release pollen into the air to the female ovule, causing fertilization. Their seeds develop without a protective covering. The earliest gymnosperms were seed ferns from the Devonian period (408-360 million years ago). Some examples of gymnosperms are conifers (like pines, redwoods, and fir), gingkos, seed ferns, cycadeoids, and cycads. These plants were very important to plant-eating dinosaurs.
fir
Plant Printouts
EnchantedLearning.com
Botany and Paleobotany Dictionary
yucca
Plants
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Click on an underlined word for more information on that subject.
If the plant term you are looking for is not in the dictionary, please e-mail us.

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