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Characteristics of Pteridophytes

Vascular tissue present

Phloem and xylem

Branched sporophytes No seeds No flowers Dominant generation: Sporophyte

4 groups of Pteridophytes
Phylum Psilophyta- Psilopsids/whiskferns Phylum Lycophyta Clubmosses Phylum Sphenophyta Sphenopsids/

Phylum Pterophyta - Ferns

Phylum Psilophyta- Whiskferns

so called because of whisklike stems
leafless, dichotomously branched stems.
Phylum Psilophyta Class Psilopsida Order Psilotales

Family Psilotaceae
Genera:Psilotum Tmesipteris

Sporophyte of Psilotum nudum


Aerial photosynthetic stem


Dichotomously branched
Fertile appendage

Stem of Psilotum nudum


Fused sporangia triloculed

Bifid sterile aparatus

Important characteristics of Whiskferns

Homosporous Has bisexual gametophytes Vascularized gametophytes and rely on mutualistic fungi for nutrition (mycorrhizae)

Phylum Lycophyta
Commonly called clubmoss Leaves called microphylls Homosporopus and heterosporous groups First to have true roots

Taxonomic Classification
Phylum Lycophyta Class Lycopsida Order Lycopodiales Family Lycopodiaceae Genus Lycopodium Order Selaginellales Family Selaginellaceae Genus Selaginella

Lycopods alive today are small - all have lycophylls (1 vein, intercalary meristem)

Extinct Lycopods were tall trees: make up some of coal deposits


Cones or strobius aggregates of sporophylls

Photosynthetic stem Dichotomous branching

Lycopodium digitatum
Absence of leaf gaps
Stem is covered with microphylls Isophyllous with one type of leaves

Lycopodium squarrosum

Strobilus- reproductive structure contains sporangia and spores

Cones or strobilus with leaves called sporophylls which bear sporangia

Sporophylls- specialized leaves of sporophylls

Selaginella- heterosporous lycopods

Selaginella bigelovii

Selaginella bigelovii resurrection plant

Selaginella cinerascens spikemoss

Some Lycopods have dimorphic leaves

Two large lateral leaves and two small inner leaves

Heterospory in Selaginella formation of megaspores and microspores

Difference between Lycopodium and Selaginella Lycopodium isophyllous Homosporous Without rhizophore Monoecious gametophytes Selaginella leaf dimorphism Heterosporous With rhizophore Dioecious gametophytes

Lycopods native to San Diego area:

Isoetes - Merlins Grass

Taxonomic Classification
Phylum Lycophyta Class lycopsida Order Isoetales Family Isoetaceae Genus Isoetes

Isoetes Quillworts

Aquatic lycopods

With corm-like stem Quill-like leaves

CAM metabolism

Quill-like leaves

Corm underground stem

Phylum Equisetophyta
Equisetophytes (Equisetum) - Scouring Rushes / Horsetails Have ridged stems Whorled microphylls

Silica in cell walls

Taxonomic Classification
Phylum Sphenophyta/Equisetophyta Class Sphenopsida Order Equisetales Family Equisetaceae Genus Equisetum
rammossissimum arvense

Equisetum hyemale Common Scouring-Rush

Ridges and elevations on the jointed stems

Nodes and internodes

Nodes- with megaphylls in whorled phyllotaxy

Equisetum laevigatum Smooth Scouring-Rush

Cone or strobilus

Equisetum arvense Common Horsetail dutchmans pipe

Ridged stem of horsetail

Phylum Pterophyta - Ferns

Parts of sporophyte
1. rhizome 2. roots 3. leaves called fronds simple, compound 4. erect stem is called caudex 5. fiddle head young fern leaf

Leaf called frond segment is called pinna or leaflet

Pinna or leaflet showing sori

Fiddle head young fern leaf

Growth pattern is called circinnate vernation

sorus -group of leptosporangia

Two types of ferns according to sporangial development

Leptosporangiate sporangia develop from a single initial cell
Order Filicales and others

Eusporangiate sporangia developed from a group of meristematic initial cells Order Ophioglossales Order Marattiales

Sorus covered with indusium indusiate

Sorus- cluster of sporangia

Leptosporangiate Ferns
Leptosporangium: one cell thick spores ejected


spores (n)


spore (n)



spor ophyte (2n) you ng spor ophyte (2n) gametophyte (n )

sperm cell (n)

Antheridium- sperm cells

Gametophyte chordate and photosynthetic

Archegonium egg cell

Lygodium Climbing Fern - a vine

Cyathium a tree fern

Giant skycraper with erect stem called caudex

Used for orchid post

Adiantum reniformis California Maidenhair Fern

Platycerium Staghorn Fern

Aquatic ferns



Azolla Mosquito Fern

- symbiotic relationship with blue green bacteria - seeded in rice paddies for nitrogen fixation