(i^acneU Hntuetaity Hibcati}

3ti(aca,

Kern ^atk

GEORGE FRANCIS ATKINSON
BOTANICAL LIBRARY
1920

CORNELL UNIVERSITY LIBRARY

924 089 570 380

The
tine

original of

tiiis

book

is in

Cornell University Library.

There are no known copyright

restrictions in
text.

the United States on the use of the

http://www.archive.org/details/cu31924089570380

FKONTrspiECE.

—A

Congenial Plant Society, Minnesota

(Photograph, by H. E. Murdock)

FIRST STUDIES OF

PLANT LIFE
BY

GEORGE FRANCIS ATKINSON,

Ph.B.

PBOFESSOK OF BOTANY IN CORNELL UNIVERSITY

BOSTON,

U.S.A.

GINN & COMPANY, PUBLISHEES
1902

OOPYKIGHT,

1901,

BV

GEORGE

PEAlirCIS

ATKINSON

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

(Ct3

^1 is-0

INTRODUCTION
For
a long time botanical science, in the popular mind,
chiefly of pulling flowers to pieces

consisted

and finding
All

their Latin

names by the use

of the analytical key.

the careful descriptions of the habits of plants in the classic

books were viewed solely as conducive to accuracy in placing
the proper label upon herbarium specimens.

Long

after the

study of botany in the universities had become biological
rather than purely systematic, the old regime held

sway

in

our secondary schools
of high schools
still

and perhaps, some of us to-day know working in the twilight of that first ray
;

that pierced primeval darkness.
cally passed away,

and to-day

life

However, this has practiand its problems, its suc-

cesses

and
is

its

failures, absorb the attention of the botanist

and

zoologist.

The knowledge

of the

name

of the plant or
refer-

animal
ence. in

simply a convenience for discrimination and

The systematic

relations of a plant or animal are used

showing present anatomical afiinities and past development. The absorbing themes of investigation and study are the life processes and the means by which the organisms living in the world to-day have climbed upward and placed
themselves in the great realm of the "
fit."

When
on which

the idea of nature study
it

first

dawned

in the educa-

tional world,
it

was inevitably confused with the sciences

was based.

Hence

in earlier times

we

tried to

teach the nature study of plants by

making the children pull

;

iv

INTEODUCTION
names
of their different

the flowers to pieces and learn the
parts.

This was as bad nature study as

it

was bad

science,

for

we were

violating the laws of the child's nature.
;

The
is

child cares very little about the forms of things

he

far

more interested in what things do.
To-day nature study and science, while they may deal with the same objects, view them from opposite standpoints.

Nature study
environment.

is

not synthetic;

it

takes for

its

central thought the child,

and for
child,

its field

work

,the child's

natural
learns to

The

through nature study,

know

the

life

history of the violet growing in his

own

dooryard, and the fascinating story of the robin nesting

in the coinice of his
violet

own

porch.

The

differences of this

and this robin from other violets and othet robins in the world he considers not at all. That the plant as well as the animal in nature study should be regarded a thing of life has long been recognized, and most of our nature study of plants begins with the planting and sprouting of the seed. Unfortunately, it mostly stops here the life processes of the plant have seemed too complex to be brought within the comprehension of the child. There is

much

of chemistry in operations of plant growth,

and we

find

very few things in chemistry that are simple enough to be
properly a part of nature study.
" First Studies of
sole

Plant Life " has been written with the

view

of bringing the life processes of the plant within the

reach of the child and, with the aid of the competent teacher,
it

will certainly be comprehensible to the pupil of

even the
live,

lower grades.

In this book the plant stands before the child

as a living being

with needs like his own.

To

the

plant must be born,

must be nourished, must

breathe,

must

INTRODUCTION

V

reproduce, and, after experiencing these things, must die.

Each plant that is grown room should reveal to the
whole life. He fed; it must grow;
of a
it is

in the

window box

of a school-

realizes that the

and the story young plant must be no longer a matter of commonchild the secrets

place

;

it is

replete with interest, because it is the struggle

of an individual to hve.

How

does

it

get

its

food ?
its

How

does

it

grow?

It is of little
;

moment whether
life

leaves are

lanceolate or palmate
for the plant
;

it is

a question of what the leaves do
or death.

it is

a matter of

When
ditions

the child has once become acquainted with the connecessities of plant
!

and

life,

how

different will the

Every glance at forfest or field will tell him a new story. Every square foot of sod will be revealed to him as a battlefield in which he himself may count the victories in the struggle for existence, and he will walk henceforward in a world of miracle and of beauty, the miracle of adjustment to circumstances, and the beauty of

world seem to him

obedience to law.
BuKEATj OP Nature Study,

ANNA BOTSFORD COMSTOCK.

CoKNELL University.

AUTHOR'S PREFACE
object has been to interest the child

In presenting these "First Studies of Plant Life" the and pupil in the life and
of plants.
life

work

The chUd,

or

ested in

or something real

young pupil, and active,

is

primarily inter-

full of action, of

play, or play-work.

Things which are

in action,

which repare

resent states of action, or which can be used by the child in

imitating or

"staging" various

activities or

realities,

those which appeal most directly to
forceful in impressing on his

him and which

are

most

mind

the fundamental things

on which his sympathies or interests can be built up. There is, perhaps, a too general feeling that young pupils
should be taught things
a thing
is so,
;

that the time for reasoning out
it

why

or

why

it

behaves as

does under certain con-

ditions, belongs to a later period of life.

We

are apt to

forget that during the
is

first

years of his existence the child

dependent largely on his own resources, his own actitity body and mind, in acquiring knowledge. He is preeminently an investigator, occupied with marvelous observations
of

and explorations

of his environment.

Why

then should we not encourage a continuance of this

kind of knowledge-seeking on the part of the child ?

The

young pupil cannot,
in

of course, be left entirely to himself of things.

working out the relation and meaning

But

opportunities often present themselves

when

the child should

be encouraged to

make

the observations and from these learn

viii

AUTHOE'S PEEFACE
the result
is so.

why

No more
life,

excellent opportunities are

afforded than in nature study.
those which deal with the
states of formation.

The

topics

or work, or the conditions

most suitable are and

To

the child or

young pupil

a story, or the materials from
is

which a story can be constructed,

not only the most engag-

ing theme, but offers the best opportunity for constructive

thought and proper interpretation.
In the studies on the work of plants some of the topics will have to be presented entirely by the teacher, and will serve as reference matter for the pupil, as will all of the book on

The chapter dealing with the chemical changes work of starch-making is recognized by the author as dealing with too technical a subject for young pupils, and is included chiefly to round out the part on the work of plants. Still it involves no difficult reasoning, and if young children can appreciate, as many of them do, the "Fairyland
occasions.

in the

of Chemistry," the pupils
eral notion of
this chapter.

may

be able to get at least a gen-

what

is

involved in the changes outlined in

The

chapters on Life Stories of Plants the author has

attempted to present in the form of biographies.

They

sug-

gest that biographies are to be read from the plants themselves

by the pupils. In fact, this feature of reading the stories which plants have to tell forms the leading theme which runs through the book. The plants talk by a "sign language," which the pupil is encouraged to read and interpret. This method lends itself in a happy manner as an appeal to the child's power of interpretation of the things which it sees. Many older persons will, perhaps, be interested in some of these stories, especially in the Struggles of a White Pine.

AUTHOK'S PREFACE
The
tions

ix

story on the companionship of plants also affords a

topic of real interest to the pupil, suggesting social condi-

and relations of plants which can be read and
all

inter-

preted by the young.

Nearly

of the line drawings are original,

and were made

expressly for this book by Mr. Frank R. Rathbun, Auburn,

N.Y.

260 were reproduced from Bergen's "Botany," and Fig. 84, from Circular 86, United The States Department of Agriculture, by Mr. Chesnut. author desires to acknowledge his indebtedness to the following persons, who have kindly contributed photographs Mr.
Figs. 64, 79, 215, 216,
:

H. E. Murdock, for the Frontispiece

;

Prof.

Conway Mac;

Millan, University of Minnesota, for Figs. 220, 249, 257

Professor Gifford, Cornell University, for Figs. 87, 183, 285,

Mr. Gifford Pinchot, Division of Forestry, Department of Agriculture, for Figs. 280, 282, United States 289, 292; Prof. W. W. Rowlee, Cornell University, for Miss A. V. Luther, for Figs. 200, 296, Figs. 279, 281, 304 302; Prof. P. H. Mell, for Fig. 278; Prof. William Trelease,
;

290, 293, 295

;

Missouri Botanical Garden, for Fig. 307

;

Professor Tuomey,
is

Yale University, for Fig. 306.

Fig. 221
;

reproduced from

photographs by Mr. K. Miyake

Fig. 77, from photograph

by Mr. H. Hasselbring
Dr.

;

Figs. 76, 288,

from photographs by
were reproduced from

W.

A. Murrill.

The remaining photographs were made
of the text-figures

by the author. Some
of

the author's " Elementarj' Botany," while the photographs

mushrooms

are

from some of those published in Bulletins

138 and 168 of the Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station, and from the author's " Mushrooms, Edible,
Poisonous, etc.
CoENELL University, March,
1901.

qj,q

^ ATKINSON.

CONTENTS
PART
CHAPTER
I.

I;

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
PAGE

II.

How How

Seedlings come up from the Ground

.

1

III.

IV.

V.
VI.

VII.

THE Seeds behave when germinating The Parts of the Seed Growth of the Root and Stem Direction of Growth of Root and Stem Buds and Winter Shoots The Full-Grown Plant and its Parts
. :

7

18

24 27 33

VIII.

IX.

X.

The Plant I. The Full-Grown Plant The Full-Grown Plant The Full-Grown Plant:
:

40
II.

:

The Stem III. The Root
.

.

45 54
60

.

IV. Leaves

.

PART
XI.

II:

THE WORK OF PLANTS
Plant
uses

How How How

THE

Living

Water

to 74
87 94

XII.

XIII.

XIV.

XV. XVI.
XVII.

XVIII.

REMAIN Firm THE Root lifts Water in the Plant Plants give off Water The Water Path in Plants The Living Plant forms Starch The Work done by Plants in making Starch The Kind of Gas which Plants give off while making Starch How Plants breathe

105

....

109 115
121

126

xi

xu
PART
CHAPTER
III:

CONTENTS
THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
PAQB

XIX.

XX. XXI.
XXII.
XXIII.

The The The The

Sensitive Plant
.

132
136

XXIV.

Behavior of Plants toward Light Behavior of Climbing Plants Behavior of Flowers How Fruits are formed How Plants scatter their Seed
.

.

.

150

166
168 176

....

PART

IV:

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS

XXV. XXVI. XXVII.
XXVIII.

Life Story of the Sweet Pea Life Story of the

185 194 204

Oak
. .

Life Story of Ferns
Life Story of the Moss

....

212 215

XXIX.

Life Story of Mushbooms

PART V: BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WORLD

XXX.
XXXI. XXXII.
XXXllI.

The Struggles of a White Pine
Struggles against

....

222
238

Wind

Struggles for Territory

244 249 263

Plant Societies

INDEX

FIRST STUDIES OF PLANT LIFE
Part
I

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
CHAPTER
HOW
The
I

SEEDLINGS COME UP FROM THE GROUND
a dry seed.

life in

For

this study

we

shall use

seeds of

beans, peas, corn, pumpkin, sunflower, and

buckwheat.
are

You may

use some other seeds

if

they

more convenient, but these are easy to get at feed If you did not know that they stores or seed stores. were seeds of plants, you would not believe tha,t these dry and hard objects had any life in them. They show no signs of life while they are kept for weeks or
months in the packet But plant the seeds
field

or bag in a dry room.
in

damp

soil in

the garden or

during the

warm

season, or plant

them
is

in a

box

or pot of

damp
is

soil

kept in a

warm room.

For several
taking place

days there

no sign that any change

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
in the seeds.

not too cold,

But in a few days or a week, if it is some of the surface earth above the
buried seeds
cracked.
is

disturbed, lifted, or

Rising through this opensurface
plant.
soil

ing in the

there

is

a
it

young green
has
life

We
it

see that

now, because

grows and has

the power to push
the
soil.

its

way through

The dry seed was alive, but The plant life was could not grow. dormant in the dry seed. What made the plant life active when the seed
was buried
Fig. 1. Bean seedlinge breaking through the
soil.

in the soil

?

How

the corn seedling gets out of

the ground.

One should watch

for

the earliest appearance of the seedlings

coming through the soil. The corn seedling seems to come up with little difficulty.
It

comes up

straight, as a slender, pointed

object

which

pierces

through the

soil

easily, unless the earth is

very hard, or

a clod or stone
It looks like a

lies

above the seedling.
unwinds, and

tender stem, but in a few
unrolls, or
Fig.
2.

days more

it

long, slender leaves appear, so that

what

lings

Corn seedcoming up.

we took
leaves

for a stem was not a stem at all, but delicate wrapped round each other so tightly as to push

HOW
their

SEEDLINGS COME UP
soil

3

way through the

unharmed. What would have
if

happened to the leaves
ground ?

they had unfolded in the

How the bean behaves in coming out of the ground. When we look for the bean seedling as it is coming
up we
loop. see that the

stem

is

bent into a

This loop forces

its

way through

the soU, dragging on one end the bean

Sometimes the outer ^Tiu^ZL'ZlI- that was buried. ''"^coat of the seed clings to the bean as
it
is

comes from the ground, but usually
left in

this slips ofE

and

the ground.
it

Soon

after the loop appears

above ground

straightens out

and
is

lifts

the bean

several inches high.

As the bean
slips off.
is

being raised above

ground the outer coat

Now
into

we

see that the

bean

split

two thick parts
spread farther

[cot-y-le'dons),

which
apart,

and

farther

showing between them young green
leaves,

which soon expand into wellleaves.

formed bean

The pea seedling comes up la a The stem of the pea different way.
also

fig.

comes up

m

.

.

Germinating bean 4. shedding the seed coats.

a loop.

As

it

straightens

up we look

in vain for the pea

on the end.

There are small green leaves, but no thick part of the
pea which was buried in the ground.
This part of the

THE GEOWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
pea, then,

must have been
seen

left in

the ground.

When

we have

how

the other seedlings

come up, we

can plant more seeds in such a

way

as to see just

how each

seed

germinates, and learn the reason
for the different behavior of the

seedlings in

coming from

the ground.

The pumpkin seedling
also

comes up in a loop,
of

and on one end
loop, as
it is

the

being lifted

through the
soil,

we

see

two
ratner

tnick
.

fig.

par

I

tj

s

m 0"
JL

Bean seedUngs straightening up the plumule and 5. spreading leaves showing from between the cotyledons.
;

gether they are about the

size of

the

pumpkin

seed.

By

looking carefully
shell, or

we may sometimes
still

find the old

seed coat,

clinging to the tips
;

of these parts of the seed

the shell

is split

part

way down
tips.

only,

and so pinches tightly
it is left

over the
Fig.
6.

Usually, however,

Pea seed-

empty
It

in the ground.

lings

coming up.

will be interesting later to see

how
It

this little

pumpkin plant

gets

out of

its

shell.

HOW
As the loop

SEEDLINGS COME UP
still

usually escapes while

buried in the

soil.

straightens out, these

two thick

portions spread wide apart in the light and

become green.
There are little
the
lines

on them resembling
'

veins "on some

J
Fig.
7.

leaves.

Are these
of

two parts

the

Pumpkin seedlings coming from the ground, showing loop and opening cotyledons.
?

pumpkin

seed real leaves

where they

join the stem.

Look down between them Very young leaves are
seedling.

growing out from between them.

^^Sl-

..

The sunflower

The sun-

flower seedling comes up with a loop,
Fig. 8. Loop on stem of sunflower as it comes from the ground.

dragging the seed

on one end.
sometimes
it splits

The
left

shell, or seed coat, is

in the ground, because

farther
its

through when the root wedges
out.

way

But often the seed

coat

clings to the tips of the cotyle-

dons until the plant straight-

Then the cotyledons usually spread far apart. The
ens.

seed coat of the

pumpkin
Fig.

sometimes clings to the

tips

Seedlings of sunflower casting 9. seed coats as cotyledons open.

of the cotyledons until the sunlight pries

them

apart.

THE GROWTH AND FARTS OF PLANTS
The buckwheat
loop,
is

seedling.

This also comes up with a
this

and we begin to see that

way
The

of

coming up

very

common among

seedlings.
is

seed coat of the buckwheat

often lifted

above ground on one end of the loop.
It is split nearly across.
split

Through the
see that

in the seed

we can

^
~ ..sj^juPig.

there

are leaves

pac]jed inside very

Loop of buckwheat seedlings coming
10.

differently from
the

through the surface of the soil.

way

in

which

the cotyledons of

the
lie.

pumpkin and sunflower The buckwheat cotyleor
rolled

dons are twisted

-r4ms^
Fig. H.
lings untwisting

round each other.
seedling straightens

As

the

cotyledons of buckwheat seedand casting seed coats.

up they

untwist, and in doing this help to throw off the coat.

CHAPTER

II

HOW THE SEEDS BEHAVE WHEN GERMINATING
To prepare the seeds
see
for observation.

We

could not

how

the seeds planted in the ground behaved while

they were germinating, for they were hidden from sight.
behavior of the

To watch the
the
is

diflferent kinds,

seeds are put where there

warmth
they are

and moisture under
covered with

glass, or

damp paper
lifted at

or moss,
to

which may be
see

any time

what is going on. grown in tumblers, or
sels

They may be
in shallow ves-

covered with glass, with wet moss

or paper inside.

The

best

way

to

them for easy observation is to put them in a lamp chimney filled
plant

with wet peat moss or sawdust, as

shown in Fig. 12. Or a box may be made with glass doors on the side.
This

Corn seedlings growing in lamp chimney.

may
soft

be

filled

with wet moss or sawdust, the seeds
If

put in place, and the door then closed.

desired,

some

manila paper

may

be placed on the moss or

8

THE GEOWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
sawdust, and the seed placed between
this

and the
is

glass.

If the

lamp chimit

ney

used, roll the paper into a tube

smaller than the chimney and slip
in.

Now

put the peat moss inside,
tight.

not very

The

seeds

may

be

started between the glass

and paper,

and with a blunt wire may be pushed
into

any position

desired.

The seeds
swell.

first

absorb water and

Before the seeds are planted

for this study they should be soaked

from twelve to twenty-four hours
water.
ria.13.

in

Pumpkin seedlings
in

the
, .

Then they may be placed in germiuator f Or obscrvation. Look
l

growing

lamp chimney.

at the seeds

i

m the water several times
*

j.1

j.

i

j_

during the day, and see what changes take place in them.
All of
ger.

them become

lar-

After they have

been in the water for a
day, cut one, and also

try to

cut one

of

the

dry seeds.

The

seeds

that have been soaked
in

water are softer and
.
,

larger than the dry seed.
,-,,.,

Why IS this so o
1
.

i

T it

^^'^- 1*-

must

,

^°^ ^'*^ S^^s

^''°^

°" side for

growing seedlings.

HOW THE
water, as

SEEDS BEHAVE

be that they have taken in water, or have absorbed

we

say.

This has increased their
inside,

size,

made

them wet

and

soft.

How the pea and bean seeds swell. The pea and bean swell in a curious way, as can be seen by looking at them at short intervals after they
Fig.

i5~Bean

have been placed in the water.

seed before

soaking in
water.

The water is taken in at first more rapidly by the coat The coat of the seed than by the other parts.
seed.

becomes much wrinkled then, as
if

it

were too big for the

First the wrinkles begin to appear

round one edge.

Then they

beFig. 16. Bean seeds with coats wrinkling as they soak in water.

come more numerous, and extend
farther over the surface, until the
entire coat is strongly wrinkled,

as

shown

in Fig. 16.

This loosens the coat from the
is

bulk of the seed, and perhaps

one reason

why

this coat slips off so easily while the
is

loop of the stem

puUing the inside of
Finally the

the seed out of the ground.
Fie
17

after

Bean seed soaking in

i^^lde parts swell as they take

up water,
it is

water] larger, and

Xhcv
•'

fill

out the coat again so that °

now smooth.

smooth, as shown in Fig. 17.
sign of the seedling.

The

first

In a very few days,

now

that the seeds are thoroughly soaked with water,
life

the signs of

begin to appear.

The

root grows out

10

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
of the seed as a small, white, slender, pointed object.
It

comes from

the same spot in every seed of one
kind.
Fig. 18. Corn seeds germinating under glass, the left^ ,
-i

In the sunflower, pumpkin,
,

Duckwheat, and
,-i

t

com
_p j_i

.,

it

comes irom
i

j*

hand seed upside down.

the smaller end oi the seed,
it

ti

i

in the

tji

bean
out
ter

comes out from the hollowed, or

concave, side.
it

As soon

as the root

comes

grows directly downward, no matto
lie.

which way the seed happens
the seeds are
in a

When
Fig.
19.

placed

in

the

Later stage

lamp chimney, or
side,

box with a glass

of Fig. 18.

they can be easily held in any be interesting to watch seeds

position desired.

It will

that have been
placed in different
positions.

When
or

the roots have

grown an inch

more

in length,

sketch some of the
different positions.
Is

there

any

ad-

vantage to the plant in having
this first root

grow
Fi(j.20,

downward?

Stmiater stage of

Fig. 18.

HOW THE
How the pumpkin
like a

SEEDS BEHAVE

11

plant gets out of the seed coat.
it

As
acts

the root grows out of the small end of the seed,

wedge and often

splits

the shell or seed coat part

Fig.

21.

Still later stage of Fig. 18.

Note root

liairs in all.

way, but not enough for the

rest of the plant to escape.

The
it

little

plant develops a curious contrivance to assist

in getting out.

There

is

formed on one side of the

12

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS

Fig.

22.

Pumpkin

seedlings casting the seed coats (note

tlie

" peg

")•

stem a " peg " or " heel."
side of the stem,

This

is

formed on the underlying on
its side,

when

the seed

is

at

the point in the opening of

the seed.

This peg presses

against the end and helps to
split
Fig.
23.

the

seed

coat

further
elon-

Bean

seeds ger-

open.

The stem now

minating under glass.

gates above this peg, presses

against the other half of the
seed
coat,

and
apart

pries

the
that

two
the

halves

far

so

plant readily slips out, as
in Fig. 22.

shown
After

Germination of the bean.

the root comes out of the bean

on the concave
side, the
FIG.
25. sunflower seed germinating,

Fig.

24.

two halves

Peas germinating under glass.

^^ ^^^
is

^^^^ ^"^^^^ ®° ^^^^ ^^^^ O^^^^r COat cracked and begins to slip off. We can

HOW THE

SEEDS BEHAVE
then see
that

13
the

stem

is

a continua-

tion above

from the
one

root, joined to

end of the two thick
parts or cotyledons.

This part of the stem

now grows

rapidly,

Fig.

26.

how tlie cotyledons

Beans with one cotyledon removed to see are raised up from the ground.

arches up in a loop,

and

lifts

the bean

upward.

The
a

pea.

The
way.
Fig.
27.

pea germinates in
different

After the root begins to

grow the
is

Peas with one cotyledon remoyed

to see

how

the cotyledons are left in the

pea swells, so that
the thin coat
the bean,
is

^°""'^-

cracked.

The stem,
But

just as in

joined at one side to the two thick
this part of the

cotyledons of the pea.

14

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS

stem of the pea does not grow longer, so the pea is left The stem grows on from in position in the. ground.

between the two thick cotyledons,
arches up in a loop,
pulls out the

young
Fig.
28.

White oak acorns germinating.

and tender leaves
from the ground, and then straightens up.
To compare the germination of the bean with
that of the pea.

This can be done very easily by

iirst

soaking beans and peas for twenty-four hours in water.

With the
side
pm.29. Pumpkin
seeds

finger or with the knife split

the bean along the line of the convex

and pull the halves apart.
lies
1

The

germinating under glass, turned in differen't positions.

youug embryo plant Pii 11
ouc 01
thesc

attached to

halves,

having
g^j.^

11 broken
8QVeV&\

beans in the same

^^^^ f^.^^ ^^^ ^^^^^ way and place the

half

which has

the embryo bean plant under glass, in position as
in Fig. 26.

shown

Take one

of the peas and,

by a

slight

rubbing pressure between the fingers,

remove the thin outer
between the halves
fully
is

coat.

The

split

now

seen.

CareFig. 30.

Same

as Pig. 29,

break away one of these halves
split several

but later stage.

and

pieces

more peas in the same way those which have the embryo attached should be planted
;

HOW THE
27.

SEEDS BEHAVE

15

under glass near the beans, in position as shown in Fig.

From day

to

day observe the growth in each

case.

That part

of the

bean stem below the cotyledon can be
it is

seen to elongate, while in the pea the attachment of the coty-

the stem above

ledon which grows.

The oak seedling. The young oak plant comes out
of the acorn in a curious

way.

It is easy to get the acorns

to

see

how they

behave.
in late

Visit a white

oak tree

October several weeks after
the acorns have been falling

from the
situated
in

tree.

If the tree is
^"'- ''
^^'^''

by the roadside, or a field where there is some

^'^«

°' ^'^-

^

loose earth

which

is

damp

and shaded, many Or you may in the soil.
bury them in a
cool,

of the acorns will be partially buried
collect the acorns
soil,

and half

damp

which should be
comes out
of

watered from time to time.

The root

is

the

first

to appear,

and

it

the small end of the acorn, splitting the short point on

The root the end of the seed in a star-shaped fashion. that if the acorn is immediately turns downward, so
not buried the root will soon reach the
be seen in Fig. 28.
soil.

This can

"

16

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
How
the oak seedling escapes from the acorn.
If

you

look for sprouted acorns, you will find
stages of growth.
will

them

in different

Some with the
and

root just emerging

be

found,

others with the "tail

an inch or more long.
In these larger ones

we can
split

see that the
is

part next the acorn
into

two

parts.

As

it

curves, this split

often widens, so that

we can see in between.
In such cases a tiny

bud may be seen lying
close

in

the fork of

the two parts.

This

bud

is

the

growing

end of the stem, and

we now

see that the

tiny plant backed out
of the acorn.
^""
""

The

root hairs.

In

^'"^

''•

'^''' ''"^^ "' ^'^-

this study of the seedlings

a box or vessel where there

grown under a glass, or is no soil for the root

in to

bury

itself,

you

will see that the root soon

becomes

covered, a

little

distance back of the tip, with a dense

HOW THE

SEEDS BEHAVE

17

white woolly or fuzzy growth.

You

will see that these

are like very tiny hairs, and that the root bristles all

around with them.
help the root to do
study.

They
its

are the root hairs.

They

work, as

we

shall see in a later

CHAPTER

III

THE PARTS OF THE SEED
Are the parts of the seedling present in the seed?
Since the root comes from the seed so soon after planting,

when

the

soil is

moist and the weather warm, and

the other parts quickly follow, one begins to suspect
that these parts are already formed in the dry seed.

We

are curious to

know

if

this is so.

We
if

are eager to

examine the seeds and

see.

The dry

seeds might be^

examined, but they are easier to open
they are ready,

they are

first

soaked in water from twelve to twenty- four hours.
let

When

us open them and read their story.

The parts
split, as

of the

bean seed.

described on page 14, into halves

The bean seed can be by cutting

through the thin coat along the ridge on the rounded
or convex side.
flat

Spread the two parts out

and study them.

The two

large white

fleshy objects

which are now exposed we

recognize as the two cotyledons which were
fk;.
33.

Bean
scar.

lifted

from the

soil

by the

loop.
is

The

thin
coat.

showing

pQat

wMch

eucloscd

them

the seed

Lying along the edge near the end of one of the cotyledons
is

a small object which looks like a tiny plant.
18

THE PARTS OF THE SEED
Is

19

this the
is

embryo
that

of the

bean plant

?

The pointed

end

the root, and

we see that it hes in such a position when it begins to grow it will come

through the seed coat near the scar on
the bean.

FiG.

34.

Bean seed

split

open to shoAv

At the other end of the plantlet are two tiny leaves, pointed, and set someWe know that thing like the letter V.
xi
xl, they are leaves i, because there are veins
i

plantlet.

on them like the veins on the
short and stout, and there
it

leaf.
lies

Between these
the stem.
It

leaves and the pointed end or root
is
is

no distinct

dividing line between

and

the root.

Root
nocioss

mid stem in
cle.

the

embryo are
of the

called the cau-li-

The upper end
is

stem just below
.

33.

section of bean

the tiny leaves

joined to the cotyledon,

showing situation of plantlet,

one cotyledon breaking away as the bean

was

split open.
is,

The part of
the

the

stem

beloio the coty-

ledons, that

part between them and
of the pea seed.

the root, is

called the hy'po-cot-yl.

The parts

The

position of

the plantlet can be seen on one side of the

rounded pea, below the
Fig.
3G.

scar, after the

pea has

been soaked in water.

By

a slight rubbing

Pumpkin seed.

thin

pj.ggg^j,g betwecu the thumb and finger the The two thick seed coat can be slipped off.

cotyledons

can

now

be

separated.

If this

is

done

"

20

THE GEOWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
embryo plant remains attached to one of Sketch this, as well as the embryo of the bean
;

carefully, the

them.

compare them and indicate in the drawings the

names

of the parts.

The parts
scar
Pumpkin Fia. 37. seed split open in
;

of the

pumpkin

seed.
is

The

on the pumpkin seed

found on

the smaller end.
split

The seed
carefully

coat can be

right-hand half
the papery covering

by

cutting

part

way

shown which

sur-

around the edge of the flattened seed

rounds the " meat."

and then prying

it

open.

inside

is

covered with a very thin
is

The " meat papery layer. The

pointed end of the meat
It lies, as

the caulicle (root and stem).

we

see, in

the small pointed end
is

of the seed coat. as

The meat

in halves,

shown by a "

split "

which runs through
joined.
Fig. 38. " Meat," the embryo, with one cotyledon

to the point

where they seem to be

These halves of the meat are the cotyledons
of the joumpMn.

turned to

one

Pry them apart
broken
the
free.

so that

side.

one

is

At

this junction of the

cotyledons will be found a tiny bud on the

end

of

stem

attached
is

to

one cotyoff.

ledon after the other
Fig. 39.

broken

The

Long

stcm

is

vcry short in the pumpkin plantlet.

section through

a pumpkin
seed.

We
lies

have found

in the pea and bean that it between the cotyledon and the root. Is it so in all seeds? -

So

it

does in the pumpkin.

Cut a pumpkin seed through the cotyledons, but

THE PARTS OF THE SEED
lengthwise of the seed.

21

Make

a sketch of

M
iifl

one part showing the seed coat, the position
of the

papery

lining, the cotyledons as well as
section of

the short root and stem.

Cut a seed in two, n crosswise, and sketch, showing all the parts.
.

T

pumpkin

seed.

The sunflower
open to

seed.

The sunflower seed can be

split

remove the seed coat in the same way as the pumpkin seed. The meat occupies much the same
position,

and

is

covered with a papery layer.

While

the proportions are different, the general

shape of the plantlet reminds one of that
of the
FIG. 41.

Sunflower

seed split open
showing

"meat,"

pumpkin or squash. The root and ^tcm are more prominent. There are two ^^^ cotyledous. As wc spread them apart ^
*^
*•

the embryo in right and papery covering in left half of

^g

ggg i^gji they are loinsd to the
''
•>

end of

the stcm J

We cau
If

also see

between them

the tiny bud.
as

we

did the

pumpkin
is

seed,

we we

cut the seed in two,
shall see that the

relation of the parts

much

the same.

Structure of the corn seed.

In the germination of

the corn

we have

seen that the root comes out at the

small end of the kernel in the groove on one side, while the leaves first appear on
the same side at the other end of this groove. If the tiny plant is present in the seed, then ^
groove.
it

^^^

^ ^^^^^
re-

should be found in the
,

of sunflower with

Split the soft kernel lengthwise

one cotyledon moved.

:>2

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
this groove.

through

Just underneath the seed coat at

the small end will be seen the end of the root and stem
(caulicle).

groove there
Fifj. 43.

Cross secat

ina;

Hon

of sunfloiver
;

These

SO
may
lines lines
it is

Near the other end

of

the

be seen several converg-

running as shown in Fig. 44. O
represent
several

leaves

cut

seed at left

right, side view of

embryo
from
seed.

taken

leugthwlse while they are rolled round t i The stem lies between the each othcr.

leaves

and root;

distinguished from the root.

now very short, and cannot be On the opposite side of
is

the stem from the groove

______
4
Fig.

a small curved object.
is the
^jjf
.

This

^\I3^
44,

f

V^^j.

cotyledon cut through.
,

I here

is

only one cotyledon
7

.77
7 -7

m
kin,

the

7

corn seed,

Section of corn seed ; at upper is the plantlet, next the cotyledon, at left the endosperm.
right of each

while in
there are two.

the other seeds studied

The meat

in the corn seed.

In the pea, bean, pumpall

and sunflower seeds the cotyledons form nearly
the meat inside the seed coats.
the

In

fact,

whole seed inside the seed coat in these
except
the

plants,

papery

lining,

is

the

""of^Tu'ct embryo,
embryo Burrounded by the
of

for the cotyledons, being the first

l^^^^^' ^^^ rho:i:gon:;i:w

P^^

of the tiny

embryo
'^

plant.

endosperm.

"^e have fouud Something very different ^ in the com. Thc embryo is only a small
inside

part of

of the seed. After the seed has germinated, the food substance is still there. Did you

the

THE PARTS OF THE SEED

23

ever examine a kernel of corn after the seedling liad

been growing some time?
left

There

is

scarcely anything
It is nearly

but the old and darkened seed coat.

hollow within.

The meat which formed most
think every one
in this

of the inside of the kernel has disappeared.

What has become of it ? I who has examined the corn
tell.

way can

p.^

43.

com
Is

It has ^ gone to 'form, food "^for the J vouna V plant. The substance which is used by the
is called

Another section showing
another view

embryo for food
there

endosperm.
the seeds of the

tucicwheatin

endosperm

in

pumpkin, the bean, the pea, and the sunflower?
is

That
It is a

perhaps a hard question for you to answer.

difficult

matter to explain without taking a good deal
of time.
tions,

But

I will

ask a few more quesguess,

and then perhaps you can

^sectfon of'^buokwheat seed show-

Where
before

does the germinating pumpkin, sun-

mg

coiled

coty-

flgwer, bcau, or pea seedling find its food y p £r o
it

ledons.

can get a

sufficient

amount from
where
?

the

soil ?

If

from the cotyledons, or

first leaves,

did they obtain the food to

become

so big in the seed

What

about the papery lining in the squash and sun?

flower seed

CHAPTER IV
GROWTH OF THE ROOT AND STEM
The part
of

the root which lengthens.
is

One

of

the

interesting things about the root
in length.

We

way it grows know that as the
the

root becomes longer the tip
along.

moves

But does

this

take place by

a constant lengthening of the ex-

treme
tip

tip of the root

?

Or

is

the
soil

pushed along through the
the root

by the growth or stretching of some
other part of
?

We

can

answer
lings

this

if

we examine

the seed-

which are growing

in germina-

tors, as in

the lamp chimney, where
soil.

the roots are not covered with

To

tell

where the

root elongates.

Take a

fine

pen and some indelible Beginning at

or water-proof ink.

the tip of the root,
pia.48,

mark

off

on one
to-

Pumpkin seedlings, the root marked "in ]eft.
Eight one showing where growth took place in twenty-four hours.

side

Very short spaces, as close
first
i

gether as possible, the

1 1

irom thc
24

.

i

;

tip,

aud the others

i

,

i

mm. mm.

GROWTH OF THE ROOT AND STEM
apart, as

25

shown

in Fig. 48.

Now

place the seedling

back in the germinator in

position, the root pointing
result.

downward.

In twenty-four hours see the

The

spaces between the

marks are no longer

equal,

showing

that stretching of the root takes place over a limited area.
Figs.

48 and 49 show the result with corn and pumpkin

seedlings.

The

root has not

ceptibly at the tip, for the space
off

grown permarked

by the first line does not appear to be any greater than it was twenty-four hours Growth in length occurs in a region ago. The a short distance tack of the tip.
spaces between the
tip,

marks back
between the

of the
third,
Pig. 49.

especially those
fifth,

Corn seed-

and sixth marks, are much fourth, This is the place, then, where wider.
the
root stretches or grows in length.
is

lings

marked

to

show where growth
takes place in the
roots.

The stretching

greatest in the middle of this region.

Direction of the roots of seedlings.

The

first

root

from the seedling grows downward, as we have seen. In the germinating seed, what advantage is there to
the plant in this

The

roots

downward direction of the first root ? which grow out from this first or primary
"What direction do they
is

root are called lateral roots.

take?

What advantage
which the

there to the plant in the
?

direction

lateral roots take

Look

at the

root system, as a whole, of the seedling

when

well

26

THE aROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
What
are the advantages to the plant of
?

developed.

the distribution of the roots which you observe

Growth

of

the stem.

In a similar

way

the

re-

gion over which growth

extends in the stem
be shown.
the seedlings

may

As soon as come above

the ground, or as soon
as a

new

portion of the

shoot begins to elongate

above the leaves, mark
ofi

the stem with cross

lines.
Fig,
50.

Stems of bean marked to show where growth takes place in stem.

The lines on the stem may be plaCcd
as indicated in Fig. 50.

farther apart than those

on the

root.

They may be put
if

A

rule

may

be used to locate the marks on the stem,
the rule
of
is

and then,

after several days,

placed by
will be

the side of the stem, the determined.

amount

growth

CHAPTER V
DIRECTION OF

GROWTH

OF ROOT AND STEM

In our studies of the seedlings

we cannot
is

fail to

observe

that the^^rs^ root grows doivnward and the stem upward.

No matter which way
root conies out
it

the seed

turned, as soon as the
It

turns downward.
in the

grows toward

the earth, or

if

it is

ground

it

grows toward the

Fig. 51.

Corn seedling pinned

in a horizontal position.

center of the earth.

So we say that the root grows

toward the
earth, or

eairth,

while the stem grows

away from the

upward.

It is interesting to notice

how

per-

sistently the root

and stem grow

in these directions.

To

see

how

persistent they are in this, change the posi-

tions of the seedlings after they

have begun to grow.

Downward growth

of the root.

Take any one

of the

seedlings germinated

in

moss
27

or sawdust or behind

,

28
glass.

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
Place
it

in a horizontal position.

This

be done behind a pane of glass in a box, or a pin be thrust through the kernel into a cork which
is

may may

then placed as in Fig. 51, with a
tle

lit-

water in the bottom of the vessel

to keep the air moist.

In several hours, or on
the following day, observe the position of the
root.
Fia.
52.

Same corn

seedling as

shown

in Fig. 51, twenty-four hours later.

The greater part

of

it

remains in a horizontal

position, but the

end of the root has turned straight
root bends

downward again. What part of the
horizontal position?

when

it

turns from the

We

should

now determine what
it

part of the root

it is

which bends when

grows down-

ward
do

in this fashion.

To

this the root of another

seedling should be

marked

and placed in a horizontal
position.

With a fine pen and India ink, mark spaces
as close together as possible,

.,, ,, ij,, 53. T, FiG. Pumpkin seedling placed horizontally and marked to show where the root bends when turning downward.
,
.

about 1

mm.

apart, beginr o ^

nlug at the tip of the TOOt.

Mark
shown
in Fig. 53,

off

ten such spaces, as

and leave the root in a horizontal position for a day. Now observe where the curve has

GROWTH OF ROOT AND STEM
taken place.
It

29
tip, for

has not taken place at the
the tip
is still

the

mark made near
4, or 5,
first.

there.

The curve has

taken place back from the
probably,
if

tip, in

the region of

mark

3,

the marks were close together at

These marks on the bent region of the root are
that

now far apart. You remember
see

when

the root was measured to

where growth
root

in length took place,

we found

that

the

grew

in this

same region,
of the tip.

just

back
is

This

an

interesting observation,

and I think you can understand

why

the root

can bend easier in the

region

where

it

is
Fig.
54. Bean seedling placed horizontally and marked to show where the root bends.

stretching than in the

region where

elonga-

tion has ceased.

The region
is

of elongation

is

called

the motor zone, because this

where the root moves.

What
your

causes the root to turn
is

downward ?

This

is

a

question that

difficult,

perhaps, to demonstrate to

satisfaction.

It

can be shown, however, that
the force which pulls an apple

gravity influences the root to turn toward the earth.
Gravity, you know,
is

or a stone toward the earth

when

either

is

let fall.

"We must bear in mind, however, that gravity does not

30

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
down
in the

pull the root

same way in which
(If desirable

it

acts

on the stone or apple.

It only influences or stimulates,

we

say, the root to turn.

the teacher can

explain or demonstrate for the

pupils, when the
Fig. 55.

that
influ-

ence of gravity
Pumpkin cut oft" to show
not bend.
seedling ijlaced horizontally and root tip that without the I'oot tip the root will

is

neutralized,

the root does not
to

turn
in

downward but continues
it

grow

in the direction

which

was

placed.

This

may

be demonstrated by

the well-known experiment of
positions, several seedlings

fastening, in different

on a perpendicular wheel or

IOg.

56.

Bean seedling treated

as the

pumpkin

seedling in Fig. 55.

disk which revolves slowly.

The
is

position of the root

with reference to the earth
the influence of gravity
is

constantly altered, and

neutralized.)

GROWTH OF ROOT AND STEM
If the tip is

31

removed, will the root turn

?

Now

place

some more seedlings with the roots in a horizontal position, or, if you choose, this experiment can be carried on along with the others. With sharp scissors, or a
very sharp knife, cut
off

the extreme tip of the root.

In twenty-four hours afterwards observe the roots. They have elongated, hut they have not turned downward.

They have continued

to

grow

in

the horizontal position in which they were
placed, although the

cut away.

Why

is

motor zone was not this? It must be that
the part which
is

the tip of the root

is

sen-

sitive to the influence or stimulus of gravity.

For this reason the
the perceptive zone.

tip of the root is called

The upward growth
stem
is

of the stem.

If the

well developed in any of the seed-

lings placed in a horizontal position,

we

see

Fig.

57.

that the stem turns up while the root turns

The corn seedling shows this well in Fig. 52. It is more convenient in studying stems to take seedlings grown in pots. Squash, pumpkins, corn,
down.
bean, sunflower,
etc.,

sunflower seedlings turning upward.

are excellent for this study. Place

the pot on
plants.

its side.

In twenty-four hours observe the
straight

They have turned
in Figs. 57

upward

again, as

shown

and

58.
is

In the case of the stems

the part which turns

at a

much

greater distance

32

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
root.

from the end than in the

This

is

because the

region of elongation or motor zone in the stem is farther

from

the tip than in the root.

Kow

gravity influences the stem.

It

may seem

re-

markable that gravity, which influences the root

to

grow downward,
upward.
It
is

also

influences

the

stem to grow
lateral

nevertheless true.

The

roots

and

lateral stems are influenced differ-

ently.

What

are the advantages to ger-

minating seeds from this influence of
gravity on root and stem?

Behavior of the roots toward moisture.

Test this by planting seeds in a long box,

keeping the
Fig.

soil in

one end dry and in

the other end moist. The root grows P umpkin toward moist places in the soil. If the ^ seedlings turning t
58.

upward.

soil is
it.

too wet, the roots of

many

plants

grow away from
cannot get
if

surface of the soil

Sometimes they grow out on the where they can get air, which they
is

the soil

too wet.

CHAPTER VI
BUDS AND WINTER SHOOTS Do buds have life? When the leaves have fallen from the trees and shrubs in the fall the forest looks bare and dead, except for the pines, spruces, cedars,
and other evergreens.

The bare

tree or shrub in the

'

Fig.

59.

Winter condition of trees and shrubs,

yard looks dead in winter.

But examine

it.

The
If
stick.

slender tips of the branches are fresh and green.

we

cut or break a twig,
It

it is

not dry like a dead

It is moist.

seems just as much alive as in the
trees are covered with green leaves.
33

summer, when the

!

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
But look
sides, just

at the tip of the twigs,

and on the
!

above where the leaves were
?

What

do the buds mean

Do they have

life ?

How
of

the buds look inside.

On
the

the shoot

the

horse-chestnut

see

overlapping
re-

" scales "

on the bud.
one

Take a pin and
another.
seated
in

move them
Observe
the bud.

after

how On
the

they are

this side is one, side
is

and

on the opposite

another.
seated
?

How
And

are

next

two

the next

?

They

are not very

easy to remove, and our hands are
" stuck

up "

if

we handle them.

This sticky substance helps to hold
the scales close together and keeps

out water.

When
shoot of horse- moved,
c estnut.

the

brown

scales are re!

See the thin chaff-like ones scalcs covered

rp^gj^

come

with long
green in
!

woolly hairs.
color,

These scales

are

and

in shape are like miniature leaves

They

are alive even in the fall or winter
are they kept

How

from being

killed

?

The

long woolly hairs are folded round them like
a scarf, and all are packed so tightly and

snugly under the close-fitting brown scales

BUDS AND WINTEE SHOOTS

35

that they are well protect-

ed from loss of water during dry or cold weather,
or after freezing.
lie

They
it

" asleep," as
winter.

were,

all

In spring

we

know they awake

How the bud looks when
split.

With a sharp knife

we

will split the

bud down through

the end
Fig.
62.

of the
i

Opening bud of hickory.

,

stem.

-ttt

We see how
is

closely all the scales

fit.

Near the center they
iintil

become smaller and smaller,
soft

there

the

end of the stem,
to

which seems

be as
in

much

alive

as

the

summer, but it is resting now. The leaves in the
Fig. 6 Long section
of horse-

bud

are

winter leaves,
it
is
;

HoW
for

convenient
tree

ciiestnutbud

the

or

shrub
it

woolly scale
leaves inside.

that in the fall

can
/.

put on this
,

,

-,

.

armor

oi
Pig.
64.

and wax to protect the tender end of the stem

brown

scales

Bud

in section,

of European elm showing overlap-

ping of scales.

36

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
The
lateral

buds.

There

are

several large buds on the

side of

the shoot, larger near the terminal bnd.
If

we examine

these,

we

find that they look the
as the terminal bud.

same

inside
lateral

The

buds are smaller, perhaps.

Where

are the buds seated on the shoot?

The

lateral

buds

are

seated just
scar left
leaf.

above the
falling

by the

We

say that they

are in the axils of the
leaves, for they
to

began
in

form

here

the

summer, before the
leaves
fell.

Are there
all

buds in the axils of
the leaves of the

shoot which
Fig.
65.

Slioot

and buds of

you have

?

liorse-cliestnut.

Which buds
will

form branches next spring
will the terminal
?

?

What

bud do

Why

is

the
Fig.
66. Branched shoot of horse-chestnut with three

terminal bud larger
than the lateral buds
?

years' growth.

BUDS AXD WINTER SHOOTS
The winter
shoot.

37

You

should have a shoot two or
three feet long, branched,
if

possible.

See

how

it is

marked.

The

leaf scars.
These are very

and are in pairs opposite each other,
large,

just as the

scales are

seated in the bud, only

the different pairs are
farther

apart on
tell

the stem.

Who

what the row of pin holes in the scar means ? Perhaps you can tell better
can
later on.

What
?

else

do you

see
PIG.
67.

on the shoot

Ihere are

Shoot of ash three

^^« s^aZg scars, OT

girdU scars.
?

years old, and

section
rings.

showing annual

What

do they mean
•'

When

thB bud begins to grow m.
the
spring,
off.

the winter scales and leaves are

thrown

Each tiny
it

scale

and winter

leaf

leaves a scar on the shoot just as the large sum-

mer
scar.

leaves do, only

is

a tiny
Fig.
68.

Shoot of

But there are many

scars

tuttemut showand buds.

close together all

round the shoot,

38

THE GKOWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
for,

as

we have
Each
is

seen, the winter
in

scales

and leaves are seated so

the bud.

year, then, a girdle

of scale scars

formed on the shoot.

How

old

is

the

branch you have ?

Get a shoot which
has several girdle
scars
it

on

it.

Cut
be-

through,

tween the

girdle

Fio. 71 Fig.

Shoot of butternut showing leaf scars, axillary huds, and adventitious buds (buds coining from above the axils).
69.

Fig. 70.

Shoot and bud of white

oali.

Fig.
Fig.

Two-year old shoot of white oak showing where the greater number of branches
71.

(

arise.

BUDS AND WINTER SHOOTS
scars.

39

How many
?

rings

show

in the cut surface of the
?

wood

What

does this

mean
scars,

Other buds and shoots.

Gather other

shoots

and

study the buds, the leaf

and

their arrangement.

Good ones
butternut,

to study are the ash, ailanthus, walnut or

oak,

elm,

birch,

dogwood,
open

peach,

apple,

willow, poplar, etc.

Some buds may be made
etc.

to

in

the winter.

Bring in shoots of dogwood, willow, poplar, ash, oak,
Rest the cut ends in water and see what will

happen after several weeks or months.

CHAPTER

VII

THE FULL-GROWN PLANT AND ITS PARTS
I.

THE PLANT
Tke
seedling has roots,

The plant has
parts.

different parts.

stem, and leaves.

The full-grown plant has the same
and

But the

roots, of course, are larger, longer,

much more branched.
also,

There are

and the stem
fruit,

is
?

often very

many more leaves much branched. Are
say,

there any other parts

There are the flowers, you

and the
hairs,

and some plants have
Yes, but

thorns, spines,

and

tendrils.

many

plants have just

the root, stem, leaves, flowers, and fruit.
different they are in different plants
!

And how

Did you ever
differ-

notice that the form of the stem, and the shape and

arrangement of the leaves and flowers mark the
ent kinds of plants so that you can
tell

them apart?
appearance or

The form
habit.

of the entire plant
seeds of each

we

call its

The

kind of plant make new plants

of the same kind and shape.

The sunflower is tall and slender. Tall, erect plants. At first there is a simple, straight, tall, shaft-like stem, and
large, spreading leaves pointing in different directions.
40

rULL-GEOWN PLANT AND
At
is

ITS

PAETS

41

first and largest flower head formed, and others come on later from short branches in the axils of the upper

the top of the stem the

leaves.

The full-grown
up by

plant has a golden crown
of flower heads held

the

tall

stem

shaft.

The mullein is also tall and
slender,

with rough, woolly
of

leaves

and a long spike

yellow flowers.
are tall

The plants

and slender because main stem is so prominent and branches not at
the
all,

or but

little.

In the

sunflower and mullein the
habit
is

cylindrical.

Tall larches, spruces, and
pines.

These trees branch

very much. But observe how
small the branches are com-

pared with the main shaft,

which extends straight
through to the top.
habit
is

The
^i«72-

like that of a cone.

cylindrical stem of mulleln.

The oaks and birches have a more or less oval habit. The elms have a spreading habit, and so on. Is a pine,

42

THE GROWTH

Al^B

PARTS OF PLANTS
form when
is it

or oak, or other tree different in

grows
in a

alone in
forest?

a

field

from what
tell

it

when grown

Can you

why?
trailing arbutus,

Prostrate plants.

The strawberry,

You can find and others are prostrate or creeping. other plants which show all forms between the prostrate

and the erect

habit.

The Duration of Plants
Annuals.
field

Many

of

the flowers

and weeds of the
and

and garden

start

from seeds

in the springtime

ripen a
in

new

crop of seeds in late spring, in summer, or

autumn.

Then the plant

dies.

It

must be very
from the tiny

clear to us that a plant

which

starts

embryo

in the seed, forms the full-grown plant, flowers,

ripens its seed in a single

growing season, and then

dies,

has spent
seed.

its life

for the

main purpose

of

forming the

The seed can dry without harming the young
that the seeds of
all

plantlet within.

Do you know
the
frozen
?

many

plants

lie

in

ground

winter without
live

killing

the
to

embryo
form

These plants

and grow, therefore,

seed, so that their kind

may

be perpetuated from

year to year.
call annuals.

Plants which live for a single season

we

Beans,

peas,

corn, buckwheat,

wheat,

morning-glory, ragweed,

etc.,

are annuals.

FULL-GEOWN PLANT AND
Biennials.

ITS

PARTS
of the

43
turnip,
is

When you
first

plant seeds

radish, beet, carrot, cabbage, etc., a very short stem

formed the

season, with a large rosette of leaves

close to the ground.

No
if

flowers or seeds are formed

the

first

season.

But

these plants are protected

from the cold

of the winter,
tall,

the following season

branched stems are formed

which
seed.

bear

flowers

and
die.

Then the

plants

The purpose of these plants, also, is to form seed and
perpetuate their kind.
It

takes two seasons, however,
to

form the

seed.

Such a
Fig.
73.

plant

we

Yfliite oak, oval type.

call
is

a

biennial.

The mullein
Perennials.
for a

a biennial.

The

short stem and the

roots live during the first winter.

We know
of years.

that trees and shrubs grow

number

All but the evergreens shed
die.

their leaves in the autumn, or the leaves

But new
etc.,

leaves
like

come forth

in the spring.
aster,

Some
Indian

of the herbs,

trillium,

golden-rod,

turnip,

produce flowers and

seed each season.

The part

of the

stem above ground

dies

down

at the close of the season,

44

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS

but the short stem under ground, or at the surface of
the ground^ lives on from year to year.
seed germinates, the plant
is

When

the

so small at

first,

and even
flowlive for

for several seasons, that for the first
ers

few years no

and seed are formed.
perennial plants.

Those herbs which

several years, as well as the trees
call

and the shrubs, we
also, so far as

In these plants,
of

we know,
kind.

the

main purpose
is

the plant, from the
its

plant's point of view,

to

form seed and perpetuate

Plants like the cotton, castor-oil bean, etc., are

perennial in the tropics but become annual in temperate
zones, because the cold

weather
first

kills

them

;

they pro-

duce one crop of seed the

season.

Woody

plants and herbaceous plants.

The stems and
woody

roots of trees

and shrubs are mostly of a hard substance
wood.

which we

call

They

are often called

plants, while the herbs,

whether annual,

biennial, or

perennial, are herbaceous plants.

CHAPTER

VIII
ETC. (Continued)

THE FULL-GROWN PLANT,
II.

THE STEM

What
in the

are some of the different kinds of
field or
?

stems that you can find in the

wood,

garden or greenhouse
shapes.

There are
stem of the

many forms and
sunflower
is

Tlie

long

and

straight.

There are

short branches at the top where the plant

bears a cluster of large flower heads, the
largest one

on the end of the main stem.
see a sunflower plant with
?

Did you ever
there

only one flower head
is

Can you

tell

why
?

only one flower head sometirhes
the

The corn plant and
examples of corn tassel
the
tall
is

bamboo are good

and

slender stems.

The
ear
is

a tuft of branches bearing

stamen

flowers.

The

silken

another
flowers,

branch

which

bears

the

pistil

and

later

the fruit.

Are other

branches of the Indian corn ever developed

Wheat and

oats, also,

have

tall 45

777 and slender

?

fig.

74.

Sunflower,
cylindrical type.

46
stems.

THE GEOWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
Perhaps
all

these plants have formed the habit

of long stems because they often

grow
air.

in large, crowded

masses, and take this

means

of lifting themselves above

other plants in search of light and

In the pines, spruces, and larches
rises

the

main stem
straight

like

a great

shaft from the ground

through the branches to the
top.

The highest part

is

the

end of this straight

shaft.

These trees have many branches reaching out in
graceful curves, but the main

stem

remains

distinct.

A

stem which continues or runs
through
to

the top is said to

he excurrent.

Have you
by
a

ever

been on the top of a mountain
surrounded
Fig,
75,

forest

of

oaks, maples, beeches, pines,
Conical type of larch.

and spruces
ber

?

You rememtowered

how

the

tall,

slender pines

or

spruces

above the oaks or beeches.

How is it with the oak stem ? The branches are larger
in proportion to the

often lost or disappears.
tree

main stem, so that the main trunk is Compare the oak tree or pine which has grown in the open field with those grown

in the forest.

How should you account for the difEerence ?

FULL-GROWN PLANT AND
The trunk
carefully the
of the

ITS

PAETS

47

elm tree and

its

branches.

Study
Such

way

the branches of the elm are formed
is

and you will see why the main stem
a stem
is

soon
it

lost.

said to he deliquescent, because

seems to be
the forest

dissolved.

Compare

large elms

grown

in

s

48

THE GROWTH

AifD PAETS OF

PLANTS

The strawberry, dewberry, and other prostrate stems We call them creeping or creep or trail on the ground.
trai lin g stems.

The strawberry vine takes

root

here

Pig.

77.

Prostrate type of the water fern (Tnarsilia).

and there and sends up a tuft of leaves and erect
flower
is

stems.

The

creeping

water

fern

(marsilia)

a beautiful plant, the stem usually creeping on the
of shallow

bottom

ponds or borders of streams, and

the pretty leaves with four leaflets floating like bits of

mosaic on the surface.

The pea, the Japanese ivy
glory,

or

Boston ivy, the morning-

and similar stems cling to other plants, or places

of support.

They are climbing stems.

Then

there are

many

stems which neither climb nor creep, nor do they

FULL-GROWN PLANT AND
Some ascend;
prostrate.

ITS

PARTS

49

stand erect, but are between erect and prostrate stems.
that
is,

the end of the stem arises somerest of it

what from the ground, although the
over so that the end
is

may

be

These are ascending stems.

Others topple

turned toward the ground.

They are downward ient (decumbent).

Then there are stems which burrow, as it were. They creep along under the surface of the ground, the bud pushing or burrowing along as the stem grows. The mandrake, Solomon's seal,
Burrowing
stems.

and the common bracken fern are well-known exam-

The mandrake and Solomon's seal, and some others, as you know, form each year erect stems which
ples.

Fig.

78.

Burrowing type, the mandrake, a

" rhizome."

rise

above the ground.

Stems lohieh hurroxv along under

the surface

of the ground are called rootstocks, or rhi-

zomes, which means root form.

They

are

known from

50

THE GEOWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
and
scale leaves,

roots because they have buds

though

the rhizome of the bracken
(see Fig. 93),

fern,

the sensitive fern

which

rise

and some others have large green leaves above the ground. The trillium has a

short, thick rhizome.

Stems as Stoeehousbs foe Food
Bulbs are familiar to
all

of

us.

They

are

short

stems covered with numerous overlapping thick scale
leaves, as in the onion, the lily, or the tulip.

bulbs, like the Easter lily,

have a single stem. have
the
several

Some Some
hke
the
or

stems,
lily,

Chinese

" multiplier onion." Quantities of

food are stored up

in the thick scale leaves, to be used

by the plant

as

the flower and fruit stalk
are being formed.

In the
is

Chinese
Fig.
79.

lily

there

so

Bulb of

hyaointli.

much food
if it is

in these leaves

that the bulb will

grow

placed in a

warm room

with the lower surface resting on broken bits of crockery

immersed

in a vessel of water, so that the fibrous roots

can furnish moisture.
leaves, flower stem,

The

lily

will

develop green

and flowers from the food in the

FULL-GROWN PLANT AND
scale leaves alone.

ITS
lily

PAETS

51

These Chinese
florist

bulbs can be

obtained from the
or home.

and grown

in the schoolroom

Another kind of food reservoir

for plants is the tuber.

The most common and well-known tuber is the potato. a very much thickened stem. The "eyes" are buds on the stem. Do you know what develops from
It is

these " eyes "
tato
is

when

the po-

planted in the ]varm
?

ground

Place several tu-

bers in cups of water so that

one end will be out of the
water, and set

them

in the

^^''^°-

Tuber of irish potato.

window

of a

warm

room.

Place some in a dark drawer
;

where they

will not freeze in winter

leave

them
It
is

for

about a year and see what will happen.

The potato
from a "
ones,

is

filled

with starch grains.

an

underground stem.

If

you dig away the you

soil carefully

hill " of potatoes,

will see that there are

underground stems more slender often than the erect

which have buds and
is

scale leaves

on them.

On
is

the end there

often a potato tuber.
of the potato.

The starch

stored here for the good

New

plants can

be started from the tuber.

They grow more rapidly and

vigorously than from the seed of the potato.
other animals

Man and

make

use of the potato for food.

52

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
The
short, flattened

underground stem of the JackThis lives from year to
sends up a leafy flower stem

in-the-pulpit is called a corm.

year.

Every spring
dies

it

which

down

in the

autumn.

Young corms

are

formed as buds on the upper surface of the larger one,
probably in the axils of
older leaves which have

disappeared.

These

be-

come

free

and form new

plants.

Other corms are

the crocus, gladiolus, etc.

To

see

how corms

differ

from

bulbs, cut one open.

It is a solid, fleshy stem,

sometimes with loose,
scale-like leaves

on the

outside.

Storehouses which are
partly stem, partly root.
Pig.
81.

Corm

of Jaok-iu-the-puluit.

«

,

.

,,

'

are round in the
nip, beet, turnip, radish, etc.

pars-

The upper

part,

where

the crown of leaves arises,

is is

the stem, and the lower

part

is

root.

Such a tuber

sometimes called a crown

tuber.

Food
in

is

stored in rootstocks, or rhizomes, also, and
trees

the

stems of

and shrubs.

But the kinds

enumerated above show some of the results which the

FULL-GROWN PLANT AND

ITS

PARTS

53

plants have gained in forming special reservoirs for
food.

Most

seeds,

as

we have
it

seen from

the few

studied, are reservoirs of
little

food so situated that the
as soon as
it

plantlet can feed on

begins to

germinate.

CHAPTER IX
THE FULL-GROWN PLANT,
III.

ETC. (Continued)

THE EOOT
we found
that
posi-

Taproots.

In the seedlings studied

the

first

root grows

downward, no matter in what
is

tion the seed

planted.

This habit of
is

downward growth

in the first root

of

the greatest importance to the plant to
insure a hold in the soil where
it

must
all its

obtain a large part of
water.

its

food and

It also puts the root in

a posi-

tion to send out
in search of food,

numerous

lateral roots

and serves

to bind the

plant more firmly to the ground.

In

some plants the first root, or the one which grows directly downward, maintains this direction,
size as

and grows to a large
lateral roots.

compared with the
is

Such a root
Fio.
82.

called a taproot.

The

tap-

Taproot of

root

is

a leader.

You

see it continues

dandelion.

through the root system somewhat as
of pines, spruces, etc.,
54

the

main stems

do through the

FULL-GKOWN PLANT AND
branches,

ITS
it

PAETS
goes

55

only

down-

ward.

The dandelion is a good The turnip, carrot, example.
and beet
The
also

have taproots.

root system.

The

roots of

a plant, with

all their

branches,

Fig. 83.

Fibrous roots of bean.

form the root system
of that plant.

Where

the roots are

many
less
is

and

all

more or

slender, the system

fibrous, or the plant
is

said

to

have

fi-

hrous roots, as in the

clover,

the corn,
grasses,
etc.

wheat,

Where one

or

more

of the roots are stout

and fleshy, the system
is

fieshy, or the plant

Fig.

84.

Air roots of poison

ivy.

56

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
have fleshy roots. Examples are found in the
is

said to

sweet
beet,

potato,

the

carrot,

turnip, etc.

In the

carrot, beet,

and turnip the
called
also

root

is

part stem (see page
is

52)

and

a

crown tuber.
roots of
Fig.
85.

The
called

fleshy

the sweet potato
root

Bracing roots of Indian corn.

are sometimes

tubers,

b e-

cause they are

capable of
sprouting and

forming
potatoes.

new
Exof

amine roots of
a

number
they are

plants to see
if
fi-

brous or fleshy.

Air roots.

Most roots
with which we
are

familiar
Fig.

are soil roots,
since they grow
86.

Bracing roots of screw pine.

PULL-GEOWN PLANT AND
in the soil.
roots).

ITS

PARTS

57

Some plants have also air roots (called aerial Examine the air roots of the climbing poison
you
it

ivy, but be careful not to touch the leaves unless

know
is

that

wUl not poison

you.

literally

covered with these

One side of the stem roots. They grow away

from the light toward the tree on which the ivy twines,

and fasten

it

quite

firmly to the tree.

Air roots or
braces are formed
in the Indian corn,

the screw pine, etc.

Air roots grow from
the branches of the

banyan
India,

tree of

and striking the ground into

brace the wide
branching

system
Pie.
87.

Buttresses of silk-cotton tree, Nassau.

of the stems.

Buttresses are formed partly of root and partly of stem at the base of the tree trunks where root and

stem

join. of roots.

The work

work
the
fasten

for the plant.

The They

roots do several kinds of

serve to anchor plants to

soil,

or in the case of certain climbing plants to them to some object of support. They aid also

58

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
and in holding the trunk or
is

in supporting the plant

stem upright.

Another important work

the taking

up

of water

and

of food solutions

from the
of water

soil.

In the absorption
soil

from the

the root

hairs of plants play a very active
part.

Pull

up some

of the seed-

lings
Fig.
88.

growing

in the soil

and

rinse

Koot
Ficj. 89.

the roots in water.
lioot

If the smaller

hairs of sunflower seed•

hairs of radish seedling.

roots have not been

broken

ofE in

ling.

pulling

up

the plant, particles
to
is

of earth will be clinging

them which canbecause the root

not be washed

off.

This

hairs cling so firmly

to the soil particles.
91.

This
is

is

seen in Fig.

When the
it

soil

only moist the water

in

forms a very

thin film, as thin as the
ble,

film of a soap bub-

which

lies

on

the surface of the
soil
is

particles.

It

necessary then

for the root hairs

to fix themselves

very closely and
seediing

Fig.

91.

Soil clinging to root hairs

grown under
glass,

tightly
i^ije

again st

corn seedling pulled from ground.

^q[i particles, so

that they

may come

in close contact with this film of water.

PULL-GROWN PLANT AND
While plants need a great deal

ITS

PARTS

59

of water a great

many

kinds can thrive

much
of

better

where the

soil is

moist, not wet.

Most

the

cultivated plants and

many

flowers and trees do better in well-drained land.

Perhaps you have seen
of corn or
field.

how

small and yellow patches

wheat look
is

in the low
is

and wet parts of a

This

because there
air.

too

much water

in soil

and not enough
few trees and
in

On

the other hand, there are a

many

other plants which thrive better
It

wet

soil,

or even in the water.

has been the

habit of the parents and forefathers of such plants to
live in these

places, so they naturally follow in this

habit.

How

the roots and root hairs do the work of absorbsoil

ing the water from the

can be understood by the

study of Chapters

XI and

XII.

CHAPTER X
THE FULI^GROWN PLANT, ETC.
IV.
(Continued)

LEAVES
summer gather
and woods.

The

color of leaves.

In the spring and

leaves of different plants in the garden,

field,

Examine those
ter,

of

many

more.

In the autumn or win-

plants in greenhouses or those

grown

in the

room

will furnish leaves for observation.

What

colors do

the different leaves have

?

The oak, hickory, maple,
corn, bean,

elm, strawberry, dandelion,

pea are

all

green in color.

Do you think that

all

leaves are green ?

Look

further.

Maybe you
birch,

will see in

some yard a copper beech, or
on the ends of the new
shoots.

with leaves that are copper colored or brown,
are not so bright

especially those that are

They

then show shades of
or in the greenhouse

when they get older. They brown and green. In the garden
you may see leaves that are
red,

brown, or partly green and partly white.

The

coleus

plant has variegated leaves, part of the leaf being green,

and the middle part white

(see Fig. 148).

Many of you

know

the ribbon grass, striped white and green.
60

Why

FULL-G-ROWN PLANT AND ITS PAETS
are leaves differing in color

61

from the common green
?

leaf usually found in the flower garden or greenhouse

Plants which grow in the fields and woods

occasionally

have variegated leaves, but they are
If

rare.

you should happen to find the Indian -pipe plant, or ghost plant, you would see that the leaves are white, They are very or sometimes pink, but never green.

Fig, 92.

Purslane or " pusley " sliowing small thick leaves.

small.

Has

the dodder leaves

?

Yes, but they are yel-

lowish white, not green.

They, too, are very small. Do you know any other plants which always have white Are the leaves of such plants always small ? leaves ? The green leaf, compared with white ones.i Compare

You see that the green leaves with the white ones. such as nearly all the green leaves you have gathered,
grown in the dark are often white. the light. should be made between leaves grown in comparison
1

The

leaves of plants

This

62
those

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
of the oak, elm, maple, apple, bean,

pea, and

corn, are broad

and

thin.

The
thin.

grass leaves are long
If

and narrow, but they are
hemlock, or larch, you see

you have gathered
fir,

some pine leaves, or leaves of the spruce, balsam,

how very

different they are

from the other
of leaves

leaves.

Perhaps you have never heard

on the pine, for they are often called pine

needles, because of their needle-like shape.

They

are

not so thin as most other leaves, and they are

stiff.
it,

Did you ever
"pusley"
thick.
?

see the purslane, or, as

some people

call

Its leaves are not very large,

and they are

So we find that while most green leaves are

broad and thin, some are not.
the thin leaves wilt and

You

see

how
On

quickly

dry after they are picked.

But

the purslane leaves do not wilt so easily.

hot days,

during a long " spell of dry weather," did you ever
notice

how many

of the plants with green leaves wilt of

and

suffer for

want
?

water?

At such times how

is it

with the purslane
Note
During

late

summer and autumn
etc.,

the leaves of

many

trees

take on bright colors, such as red, yellow,

of varying shades.

The

pupils interested in gathering leaves will be attracted
foliage.

by

this brilliant

The

beautiful coloring

is

the expression of certain changes
decline at the close of the season.

going on inside the leaf during

its

The causes here. But

of these colors
it

form too diiHcult a subject for discussion should be understood that the " autumn colors " of leaves

are not necessarily due to the action of frost, since

many of

the changes

occur before the frosts come.

FULL-GROWN PLANT AND

ITS

PARTS

63

The Form of Leaves
Most leaves are Most green leaves are broad and thin. You have seen this by looking at different kinds of leaves. Have you noticed the shapes of leaves ? Yes, of course. You see the larger number of them have a little stalk
Stalked leaves and sessile leaves.
green.
[petiole)

where they are joined
part
(blade).

to the

stem which holds out
In
the
water-lilies

the broad

some of the
stalk
is

long and large.
is

In
also

many
large

ferns the stalk

and

is

sometimes taken
(Fig.
93).

for the

stem

But
is is

in

many

other leaves there

no

stalk,

and the
the
sessile.

blade
;

seated
leaves

on
are

stem

such

In some
appears
leaf,
all

plants

the

stem

to
Kg.
93. Sensitive fern showing large leaves and the rhizome or root-

grow through the
reality the leaf

but in

grows

round
is

stock which runs underground.

the stem

;

sometimes there

one leaf only at one point

on the stem, and in other cases two leaves which are opposite have their bases grown together round the stem.
Simple leaves and compound leaves. How many difLook at ferent pieces are there in the blade of a leaf?

64

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
lilac,

the elm, the oak, the

and the sunflower

leaf.

You
leaf

see the blade is all in

one piece, although the elm
is

notched on the

edge, and the scarlet

oak

leaf

is

deeply

scalloped.

Where
it is

the blade of the leaf
is

in one piece

called a simple leaf.
Fig.
94.

Elm
is

leaf (stipules

where the

leaf

How many pieces
are there in the
?

joined to stem).

blade of a bean leaf
ash, hickory,

?

a clover leaf
?

of the oxalis, pea,
If

and ailanthus leaves

you do not

find

all these plants,

you may

find others

which have leaves

somewhat

like

them.

Perhaps you

thought each one of the pieces of
the blade was the entire leaf.
see

But

where the stalk
supports

of the leaf joins
all

the stem.
that
call
it

The leaf stalk and
is

one

leaf.

We

such leaves as these compound.

Do you know a compound fern leaf ?
The
pieces of each
leaflets.

are called

compound leaf Each leaflet is

Fig. 95.

Compound
of ash.

leaf

supported on the leaf stalk by a
stalklet.

If

you can find some

of the different kinds of

compound

leaves,

make drawings

to

show the shape, and

FULL-GROWN PLANT AND
where the
bean
leaflets are

ITS

PARTS

65

attached to the leafstalk.
etc., is

The
once

leaf, as

well as that of the pea, ash,
c

mp

und.

The

leaves of

the sensitive

plant, of the

honey locust

and some
others, are

twice
on.
FiQ.
96.

com-

pound, and so
Scales, leaves

and yoving Bummer leaves
ailantlius tree.

in opening

bud of

Leaves wearing a Mask

Masks on the pea leaf. Some of the leaves which you have seen may have puzzled you because they have parts which are not leaf\M.\kl The pea, for like.

example, has curled,
thread-like

outgrowths

on the end, which we
call tendrils.

These

tendrils cling to objects

and hold the pea vine upright. Now see where
Fro.
97.

Tendril of squash partly turned
to leaf.

these tendrils are joined

66

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
They
are in pairs, in the

to tlie leaf. as

same

positions

the

leaflets.

Are

they

not

leaflets

which have

changed in form to do a certain kind of work for the plant f Has the leaflet here given up its thin part and
kept the midrib, or vein,
to

do

this

new work?
is it is

This

part of the pea leaf

then

under a mask ;

disguised.

Masked leaves
squash
or

of the

pumpkin.
tendrils

Ex-

amine

the

on a

squash or pumpkin vine, or

some one of
tives.

their near rela-

Draw

a cluster of

tendrils

and show how they
leaf.

are

attached to the vine.
a drawing of a

Make

Compare the two.
tendrils correspond

Do
to
?

the
the

large veins of the leaf
Fig.
98.

Did
and

Awl-shaped leaves of Kussian
thistle.

you ever
tell

find one of these
leaf

which was part
part tendril
?

Such leaves

a very interesting story.

Can you
growing

tell it ?

Spine-like

leaves.

If

there

are

barberry bushes

in the yard,
?

examine them.

What

position

do the spines occupy

See the short, leafy branches

FULL-GROWN PLANT AND
which
Is

ITS

PARTS

67

arise in the axil

between the spines and stem.

not the spine a mask under which some of the
?

barberry leaves appear

Not

all spines,

however, are masked leaves.
?

do the spines or thorns occur on the hawthorn

Where Have

you ever seen
sian thistle, or

them on the Rus-

on the amarantus, or pigweed, as it is sometimes called ? What are the spines on
a cactus
?

What

are the spines

on a

thistle,

like

the Canada
thistle
?

thistle or

common

The Position of Leaves
The
plants in the
field, forest,

and garden, as well as those

grown in the house, can tell some interesting stories about
the positions of their leaves on the stem.
Fig.
99.

Spines on edge of
thistle leaf.

common

The plants speak

in

a very quiet way.

We

cannot hear them, because they

speak in a sign language. Now you know what this means, so you must look at the plants and see how the The position of the leaves on the leaves are arranged.
plant
does,
is

the sign.

You

are to act as the interpreter
tell into

and put what the leaves

your own words.

68

THE GROWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
of the plainest signs
if

One

which the green leaves make

can be understood

you compare a geranium plant
in a glass

grown in the window with one grown out of doors, or
house where
the light comes in from

above as well as from

one

side.

The

leaf
light,

wants to face the
on the plant that
get
light
easily

to be in such a position
it

can

and

directly
surface.

on the upper

In the corn plant, the
sunflower, or the mul-

with erect and usually unbranched
lein,

stems, the leaves stand

out horizontally, so that

they get light from the
Fig. 100.

Garden-balsam plant showing leaves near ends of branclies.

sky where

it is

strong-

est (see Fig. 72).
leaf is

You

see also that in

most cases one

not directly over

They are set so that they do not shade one another. If two leaves are in the same perpendicular line, one is so much above the other on the stem that
another.

the slanting light can easily reach the lower one.

rULL-GEOWN PLANT AND
The garden-balsam plant,
tells

ITS

PARTS

69

or the wild

" touch-me-not,"
see the

the same story and more.

You
all

stem

is

branched, and in an old plant
the ends of the
branches, and on

the leaves are near

top.

As the

branch grew in
length the leaves

reaching out aU

around cut off much light from
the center of the

plant, and the leaves here,
which were formed when the plant

was younger, became so shaded that they died
and
fell

away.

Can you read this story in other
plants
?

Fig. 101.

" Feather down," elm.

The leaves

of

many

trees tell a similar story.

When

the trees are in leaf observe

how
etc.

the leaves are arranged

on the oaks, maples, elms,
position of the leaves varies

You

will see that the

somewhat

in different trees

;

70
of the

THE GROWTH AND PARTS OF PLANTS
same kind.

The

oak, or elm, or apple tree, which
all
its

has a great

many

branches, will have nearly

leaves on the outside.

These allow so little light to

get to the inside of the tree that few leaves are formed
there.

Have you

seen trees of this kind on which there

and down its by a tree which What story is large branches ? has a great many leaves in its center ? Did you ever
were

many

leaves all through the tree told

see a tall tree standing alone in a field or a yard, with

a great

many

leaves standing out
?

from

its
?

trunk on

young branches

What

story do they tell

The story that leaves

of forest trees tell.

In the deep

forest all the leaves of the larger trees are at the top.

When

these were very

young
trees

trees, the leaves

were near

the ground.

The young

had branches

also near the

ground.

Now

the old forest trees show no branches

except near the top.
trunks.

They have long, straight, bare The great mass of leaves in the top of the
grow on them, and

forest tell us that they shaded the lower branches so

much

that few or no leaves could
off.

the branches died and dropped
in here

A little light comes
in the forest

and

there, so that the

have some leaves on them.
leaves on

young trees But do you

see so

many
size

young maples,

pines, oaks,

and other

trees in

a deep forest, as you do on trees of the same

growing in an open
there are

field ?

The

forest also tells us that

some plants which

like to

grow

in its shade

72
for

THE GEOWTH AND PAETS OF PLANTS
we
find

them doing well
open
field.

there, while they cannot

grow well

in the

The leaves of most plants Most trees and shrubs shed live but a single season. Evergreen trees form a their leaves in the autumn.
The duration
of leaves.

crop of leaves each season, but these leaves remain on
the tree for more than a year, in some trees for several
years, so that the trees are green during winter as well

as

summer. The veins

of leaves.

If

you examine carefully the
will see that all of

leaves

which you have gathered while learning the

stories of their color

and form, you

them have
cially
lines

veins, as

we

call

them.
leaf as

These show espeprominent raised There are

on the underside of the

where the

leaf substance is thicker.

large veins and small ones.
is

the

largest vein.

The midrib of the leaf The smaller veins branch out
arise at the base of the leaf.
[Fit-

from the larger ones, or
If

you look carefully at the leaves of some plants

tonia, for

example. Pig. 102), you will see that the

smallest veins form a fine network.
of veins in a leaf

The
is

entire system
leaf.

forms the skeleton of the

Where

the veins form a network the leaf
veined.

said to be net-

Where the
is

veins run in parallel lines through

the leaf the leaf

parallel-reined.

You have observed
that
it

the germination of the corn, and

has one cotyledon.

How

do the veins in the

FULL-GKOWN PLANT AND
leaves of the corn run
?

ITS

PAETS

73

In germinating beans, peas,
etc.,

pumpkin, sunflower, oak,

you found two

cotyledons.
?

How

do the veins in the leaves of these plants run

The work of leaves. Leaves do a great deal of work. They do several kinds of work. They work together to make plant food, and to do other work which we
shall learn later.

Part

II

THE WOUK OF PLANTS
CHAPTER XI
HOW THE
how soon
times

LIVING PLANT USES

WATER TO REMAIN FIRM

To restore firmness

in wilted plants.

We

all

know

flowers or plants wilt after being picked,
is

unless they are kept where the air

moist.

Many
or roots

we

restore wilted flowers or

plants to a fresh

or firm condition
in

by putting the cut stems

water for a time.

By

a simple experiment one can

show how
Cut

to hasten the return of firmness or rigidity

in the wilted plant.
off several of

the seedlings growing in the

soil.

Allow them
they droop.

to lie

on the table for several minutes
of

until

Put the stem of one in a glass
this a fruit jar.

water
in

and place over

Leave another stem

a glass of water imcovered.

The covered one should

revive sooner than the uncovered one.

How

beet slices remain rigid.
soil is

A

beet freshly dug
slices

from the

quite firm.
74

Cut out

from the

HOW THE
5

LIVING PLANT USES WATER

75

beet 4 to 5 cm.^ long, 2 to 3 cm. broad, and about 4 to

mm.

finger

thick. Hold tbem between the thumb and and try to bend them. They yield but little to

pressure.

They are firm Place some of the slices

or rigid.
of beet in a five per cent salt

solution,^

and some in fresh water.

After a half hour

or so, test the slices in the fresh water

by trying

to

Fig. 103.

Beet

slices

;

at left fresh one, middle
talcen

hand one

from

salt

one after lying in salt solution, rigMwater and placed in fresh -water.

bend them between the thumb and
remain rigid as before.

finger.

They
and

Now

test those

which have

been lying in the salt solution.

They

are limp

flabby and bend easily under pressure.

from the salt solution and After an hour or so test place them in fresh water.

Now
'

remove the

slices

2^ cm.

=

1 inch.

25

mm. =

1 inch.

2

The

tumbler of water. Dissolve a rounded tablespoonf ul of table salt in a will be nearly a five per cent one. solution

76

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
again.

them

They have regained

their rigidity.

In-

stead of being limp and flabby they are firm and plump.
It appears

from this that they

have regained their firmness

by taking in or absorbing water. The slice of beet, like all parts of plants, is made up
of a great

many cells,
These

as they

are called.
Fig.
104.

cells are

Make-believe

cell,

with sugar

like tiny

boxes packed close

solution inside, lying in water.

together.

Each one absorbs
this takes place.

water and becomes firm.

Perhaps the following experi-

ment
vial

will help us to understand
Pill

how

A make-believe plant cell.

a small, wide-mouthed
dis-

with a sugar solution made by

solving a heaping teaspoonful of sugar in

a half cup of water.

Over the mouth
tells

tie

firmly a piece of a bladder

membrane.

(The footnote, page 90,
get a bladder membrane.)
as the

how

to

Be

sure that,

membrane
vial,

is

tied over the

open

end of the

the sugar solution

fills it.

Sink the vial in a vessel of fresh water
Fio.
105.

Make-be-

and allow

it

to remain twenty-four hours.

lieve

cell after

Then take it out and set it on the table. The membrane which was straight across

taking in water.

at first

is

now bulged

out because of inside pressure.

HOW THE
Now

LIVING PLANT USES WATEK

77

sink the vial in a very strong sugar solution for several hours. There should be so much sugar in the water that all of
it

will not dissolve.

The mem-

brane has become straight across again because the inside pressure is removed. Now sink it in fresh water
again.

The

inside pressure returns,

and the membrane

Fig. 106.

Make-believe
lias inside

water

cell, at left before placing in water, middle one after lying in pressure, one at right after lying in very strong sugar solution

has collapsed or become flabby.

bulges again.

Thrust a sharp needle through the
it is

memit

brane when
out again.
pressure.

arched or bulged, and quickly pull

The

liquid spurts out because of the inside

What

is it

that causes the inside pressure

?

Why

is

the inside pressure removed
in the stronger solution
?

when

the vial

is

immersed

78

THE WORK OF PLANTS

Movement of water through memhranes. This experiment illustrates the well-known behavior of water and solutions of different kinds when Water moves separated by a membrane. quite readily through the membrane, but
the substance in solution
Fig.
107.

moves

through
Also

Puncturing

with

difficulty.

a malce-believe cell after it has been lying in water.

the water will

move
the

more readily

in

direction of the
stronger solution.
or but
little, in

The

fresh water has no substance,

solution.

The sugar

solution

is

stronger

than the water, so the water moves readily through the

membrane into it. Now when the
immersed
in

vial containing the sugar solution

is

fresh

water, some

of

the

water flows

through the

memy-''
Fig.
lOS.

brane into the sugar
solution, because this
__.

same
is

as Fig. 107,

after needle

removed.

IS

stronger,

ihis

increases the bulk of the sugar solution

and

it

presses against the
it

membrane,
or rigid.

making

tight

and

firm,

When
some

it

is

placed in the stronger solution, this draws

of the

water out, and the membrane, losing

its

firmness, becomes flat again.

HOW THE
How

LIVING PLANT USES
The

WATER
is

79

the beet slice works.

beet slice

not like

a bladder membrane, but some of the substances in the
beet act like the sugar solution inside the vial.
fact, there are

In

certain sugars

and
beet,

salts in

solution in the

and

it

is
Fig. 109. Picture of a real plant cell, at left it is in natural condition, middle one after lying in a salt solution, one at riglit after being taken from salt and placed in water.

the "pull" which these
exert

on the water outside that makes the beet rigid. While these sugars and salts in the beet draw the water

what is there in the beet which acts like the bladder membrane through which the water is " pulled," and which holds it from flowing quickly out again ? In the ieet slices there are thousands of tiny membranes of a
inside,

slimy substance in the

form of rounded
these formes

sacs, each lining

a tiny box.

Every one of

a plant

cell,

and

Fig.

110.

Cells of beet slice, at left fresh, middle ones iust placed in salt water,

ones at right after lying in salt water a few moments.

acts like the bladder

membrane

in the make-believe

cell.

Inside these tiny

membranes the sugars and

salts of the

beet are

in

solution.

When

the

cells

are .full

and

80

THE WOEK OE PLANTS
press against each other
of

plump they
entire

mass

and make the the beet firm and plump. They are
at

too tiny to be seen wii^out the use of a microscope,

but

we can look
dead beet

some pictures
cannot work.

of them.

A

slice

Place some of the

fresh slices of beet in boiling water for a

few moments,
test

or in water near the boiling point.

Then

them
Place

with pressure.

They

are flabby

and bend

easily.

them

in fresh cold water,

and

in about

an hour

test
still

them
limp

again.

They
is

are

and do not again become firm.

Why
membranes

this

?

It is because
all the tiny

the hot

water killed

in the beet, so that they cannot

longer do the work.
then, these tiny

In

the

living plant,
alive.

membranes are
and

Yes,

they are alive

;

really, they are the liv-

ing substance of the plant.

Usually there

are strings or strands of the

same

living

substance extending across the sac like a

rough network.
with the sugars,
Tig. 111. Sunflower seedling fresh. It
is

The water

in the plant,
it,

salts, etc., dissolved in

is

inside the sac.

firm.

Why

the dead beet slice cannot work.
is

When

the living substance

killed the tiny

membranes
them.

can no longer hold the sugars,

salts, etc., inside

HOW THE
These escape and

LIVING PLANT USES WATER
filter

81

through into the water outside.
is

In the case of the heet this

well

shown by the behavior
is

of the red coloring matter,

which

also in

the water, inside the tiny living membrane.

When

the living beet

slice is

placed in cold

water the red coloring matter does not escape

and color the water. Nor
does the salt solution pull
it

out

when we
in

place the
al-

slice

salt water,

though some of the water
is

pulled out.

But when
is

the beet slice

kUled in
^'*^^^-

hot water the red color
escapes.

same seedlmg

as

shown in

Fig. Ill

lying in salt water.

How
water.

other plant parts behave in salt solution and in

Pull up a sunflower seedling or some other
plant.
as
It is firm

and

rigid

we

hold

it

in the hand,

and the leaves stand out

shown in Fig. 111. Immerse the leaves and most
well, as
of the
Fia.

stem in a

five

per cent

salt solution for fifteen
Sunflower seedling taken from the salt
113.

min-

utes.

Now
It is

hold

it

in the

water.

It

is

limp.

hand.

limp and flabby.
in fresh

as

shown

in Fig. 113.

Immerse the seedling

82

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
it

water for half an hour and test
gained
its

again.

It

has

re-

former firmness, as shown

in Fig. 114.

Can

you account for the behavior of the seedling under these conditions?

How

would
it

it

behave

if

we should
Immerse
it

immerse

in boiling water for a
?

few moments

Why ?

in alcohol for fifteen minutes.
effect has the alcohol

What
it?

had on

Immerse a red beet
Describe the results.

slice in alcohol.

Other plant parts
in the

may
if it

be treated
is

same way,

desired

to multiply these experiments.

The effect of too
strong
food
solutions
in the soil.
Fig. 114.

Some

of

Sunflower seedling

taken from salt solution and placedin water. It becomes
firm again.

the plant foods are
in the

form of
soil.

salts
Fig. 116.
after

in the

If the

Sunflower seedlings

salts are too

abunthe

salt solution was poured in soil.-

Fig. 116. Washing the salt out of the
soil.

dant in the

soil,

food solutions are so

strong that the plant

cannot

take them up.

In

fact, too

strong solutions will draw

HOW THE

LIVING PLANT USES

WATER

83

water from the plants so that they will become hmp and will fall down, as shown in Fig. 115, where a ten
per cent salt solution was poured into the
soil.

After these plants had collapsed,

tap water

was allowed

to

run through

the soil overnight, as shown in Fig. 116.

In the morning the plants had straightened up. again, as shown in Fig. 117,
because the excess of salt was washed out
of the soil

and the root

hairs could then
Fig. 117. After the surplus salt has

absorb water.

How some
firm.

stems and petioles remain

Did you ever think how strong
petioles

been washed out
of

some stems and
up
so

must be

to hold
?

the soil the plants revive.

much weight
is

as they often do

The

pie plant

or rhubarb leaf

very large, broad, and heavy.
leafstalk, or petiole, as
is

The
it,

we

call

quite soft, yet

it

stands up firm

with the great weight of the leaf
blade on the end.
If

you
it

shave
strips

off

one or two thin
side,

from the

weakens the leafstalk
greatly.

Why

does

the

leafstalk become so

weak when
Leaf of pie plant (rhubarb) before and after
sliav-

so little of
is

^Jj^g

SUrf aCe

TCmOVed ?

ing off two narrow stripe from the leafstalk.

84

THE WOEK OF PLANTS

Cut a piece from a fresh leafstalk^ six or eight, Cut the ends squarely. With a knife inches long. remove a strip from one side, the entire
length of the piece.
place again.
before.

Try

to put

it

in

It is shorter

than

it

was
and

Remove another

strip

another, until the entire outer surface

has been removed.

Now try

to

put one
It

of the outside strips in place again.
is

now
You

shorter than before as compared
piece.

with the center
see
it

when

the outside strip was

Fig. 119.

Portion of
of pie

leafstalk
removed.

removed

shortened up.

When

all the

plant witli one strip

outside strips were

removed the center
I think

piece lengthened out.

now you
Of
the
of

can

tell
it

why

it is

that the leafstalk was so firm.
of water in
it

course

must have plenty

to

make

cells firm.

But the center piece alone, with plenty

Fig. 120.

Strips

from outside of leafstalk of pie plant placed in water, at
coil up, at right in salt

left

they

water they uncoil.

1

If pie plant
is

cannot be obtained, the plant
excellent.

known

as

Caladium

in greenhouses
of elder are

In early summer the young soft shoots

good for the experiment.

HOW THE
water,
is

LIVING PLANT USES WATEE

85

limp.

You
it

see
is

outside strips, as

when it is covered with the when undisturbed, the outside
is

part

is

pulling to shorten the stalk and the center
it.

pushing to lengthen
the inside

This lengthwise pull between

and

outside parts

makes

the stalk firm.

Why
off

the dandelion stem curls.

Did you ever break

a dandelion stem, press one end against your tongue,
it coil

and make

up
it

into beautiful curls as

it

splits ?
split

Do you know why

does so

I

Even when you

Fig. 121.

Strip

from dandelion stem in water,
in salt

at left

it

gradually coils up,

water at right

it

uncoils.

a stem with a knife or with your fingers

it

will curl

a

little.

The

inside part

is

trying to lengthen, and the

outside part is trying to shorten.
it

So when

it is split

curls

around toward the outside part.

Split a

stem and place

it

in a vessel of fresh water.

Watch
until
life

it.

It begins to curl

it

makes a very

close
cells

more and more and more, The coil of several rings.
more
loater

substance in the tiny

takes in

and siuells

so, that all

together they push harder than they did before.
this,

To prove

put the strips from the dandelion stem

in salt water.

They begin

to uncoil

and

finally

become

86

THE WORK OF PLANTS

We know this is nearly straight and quite limp. the salt " pulls " water out of the cells, just as because
it

does

in

the beet

slice.

Now
the

place the strips from
salt

water

back into

fresh water.

firm and coil

They become up again.
Cut out carestrip

How
of

to imitate the coiling

a

tendril.

fully a

narrow

from
soft

^fW^%/

a

long dandelion stem.

Fasten to a piece of

wood, with the ends close
together, as

shown
place
it

in Fig. in fresh
it

122.
Fig.
122.

Now

Strip

from dandelion stem

made to

water
Part of

imitate a plant tendril.

and watch
it coils

coil.

one

way and

part another way, just as a tendril does after the free

end has caught hold of some place for support.

CHAPTER
HOW THE ROOT
which
LIFTS

XII
IN THE PLANT
see this

WATER
To

Root pressure in seedlings.
the
seedlings

we may

are

growing vigorously
knife

use
sun-

flower, bean,

pumpkin, buckwheat,

and others.

With a sharp

cut off the stem near the upper
end.

In a few minutes a drop of
This

water will be seen forming on the
cut end of the stem.
in-

creases in size until a large, round

drop

is

formed.

We know

that

water would not flow upward out
of the

stem unless there was some
This presthe absorptive

pressure from below.
sure comes from

power
as

of

the roots.

The

roots,
Ju^-^^^j:.

we have found

in our previous
soil pig.
123.

study, take up water from the

Drop of water pressed
of

through the root hairs so forcibly
as to produce

an

inside pressure
tissue firm.

^^floLrsU^tagty woTk °°"-

which makes the

This water

is
it

passed
reaches

inward in the root by a similar process until
87

88

THE WOEK OF PLANTS

minute vessels or tubes which are continuous with
similar

tubes in the

stem.

The continued pressure
is

M^^^

which

formed in the roots
it

lifts

the water up and forces

out

through the cut end of the stem.
(The bleeding of cut stems in
winter or early spring
is

due to

changes in the expansion of the
air,

because of the great

differ-

ences in temperature.)

Root Pkbsstjre in a Garden

Balsam
The materials necessary
study.
for the

Select a vigorously grow-

ing potted garden-balsam plant.
If this is not at hand, use a coleus

plant, geranium, or other plant.

Select a

piece of

glass

tubing

several feet long

and about the
of the

same diameter as that

stem

of the plant to be used.

Next

prepare a short piece of rubber

tubing which will
Fig.
124.

slip

over the

Cutting off stem of

end of

the glass tube.

Then
knife.

balsam plant.

have ready some wrapping cord,
tall stake,

a small quantity of water, a

and a sharp

HOW THE EOOT
To
start the experiment to

LIFTS

WATER

89

show

root pressure.

With

the knife cut off the stem squarely near the ground, as shown in Fig. 124. Slip one end of the rubber

tubing over the end of the stem and tie it tightly with the wrapping cord. Then pour in a small quantity of

water to keep the end of the stem moist at the

start.

Insert one end of the glass tubing in the other end of

Fig.

125.

The materials

for setting

up the apparatus

to

show root

pressure.

the rubber tube,

tie it tightly,
it

and then bind the glass

tubing to the stake to hold

upright.

The experiment
is

must be made
The

in a

room

in

which the temperature

suitable for growth.
result of the experiment.

In a few hours the
This will

water will be seen rising in the glass tube.

continue for a day or two, and perhaps for a longer
time.

The

soil in

the pot should be watered just as

if

the entire plant were growing.

Observations on the

90

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
height of
the

water

in

the. tube

should be

made

several times a day
It will be

for several days.

found

that the column rises and falls, show-

ing that there

is

some fluctuation
by

in

the pressure from the roots.

Thus we
absorptive

see that the roots

their

power are capable, not
soil

only of taking in water from the

with considerable force, but also of
lifting it

up

to a considerable height

in the stem.

Root pressure, however,
the water to the tops of
It

cannot
tall

lift

trees.

has been found that
lift

the root pressure of the birch can

water

84.7 feet high, the grapevine

36.5 feet, and the nettle 15 feet.

A
how

simple experiment to illustrate
root pressure works.

Here

is

an

experiment, easy to perform, which
illustrates

very well the

way

the root

\

vm

works

in lifting water.
fill

Take a thistle
with a strong
^

tube (Fig. 127) and

sugar solution.
Fig. 126. The experiment in operation showing
'

Tie tightly over the

large open end a piece of a bladder
water rising
tube.
in the glass

Get one sheep's bladder, or

several, at the
Inflate,

butcher's and remove the surplus meat.

HOW THE ROOT
membrane,
after soaking
it

LIFTS "WATER
to

91

make

it

pliant.

Pour
it

out from the small end enough of the solution so that

will stand but a short distance above the bulb in the

narrow part

of the tube.

Invert this

in a bottle partly filled with water, pass a

perforated cork

down

the tube and into the

mouth
tion,

of the bottle to hold the tube in posi-

and bring the tube
is

so that the sugar solution

in the tube
level as the
bottle.

at the

same

water in the
this to rest

Allow

for several hours.
If the

experiment has

been

set

up properly, the

sugar solution
Fig. 127. " thistle
tube.
.

now stands

higher in the tube than
the level of the water.

Because the water in the
it, it

tube has sugar dissolved in

is

a stronger solution; that
stronger

is,

of a
Fig.
128.

concentration
bottle.

than the
cases,

Apparatus with

water in the

In such

thistle tuhe, bladder

mem-

where the two liquids are separated by a membrane, more water always goes through into
tie

brane, and sugar solution to imitate root pressure.

the open end, and place where

it

will dry.

From these

dried bladders

a membrane can be

cut whenever wanted.

Soak in water before using.

92

THE WORK OF PLANTS.
The bulk
in the
cells

the stronger solution.

of the sugar solution

is

thus increased, and

it is

forced higher up in the tube.

The

root acts

much

same way, except that
and the tiny
cells of

each of the tiny root-hair

the

root act as the thistle tube and sugar solutions do, or
as the make-believe cell did.

solution of certain

The sap in the cells is a sugars and salts. The life substance
like the bladder

(protoplasm) in each cell lines the cell wall and acts

membrane.
is

The

water in the
roots,

soil

outside the

but

comes in touch with
it filters

the

life

membrane because
work

easily
all

through the

cell walls.

So

the tiny cells

together,

and the

result of their
like that of

combined

work

is

the thistle-

tube experiment.

A
hair,

potato

tube

may
of
root.

be

used to

represent the
or

work

a single root

of the

Cut out a
a
potato

cylindrical

piece

from

tuber.
Fig. 129.
as

Bore a hole nearly through
Place in the bottom of this

The same apparatus shown in Fig. 128, but a

it,

forming a tube closed at one

a plant takes the place of the bladder membrane.
leaf of

end.

tube a quantity of sugar and rest

the tube in a shallow vessel of water.

Observe
is

how

the sugar becomes wet from the water which

drawn

HOW THE EOOT
through, the potato tube.

LIFTS

WATEE

93

Does the water

rise in this
?

tube above the line of the water in the vessel outside

Why?
Note.

—A

living leaf of a plant

may

take the place of the bladder

membrane.

In the experiment illustrated in Fig. 129 the leaf of
It is necessary to select a leaf

the jewel weed, or wild touch-me-not (Impatiens),

the bladder membrane.

was used instead of which is free

from any puncture, and it must be tied on carefully with a soft cord. In this experiment the sugar solution rose two or three inches in a day,

and then rose no further. The thistle tube was then carefully lifted out, and the leaf was allowed to come in contact with boiling water to The tube was then replaced in the bottle of water. Strange kill it. as it may seem, the dead leaf worked much better as a membrane than the living leaf, and the sugar solution rose to near the top of the tube in two or three days.

CHAPTER
HOW PLANTS
What becomes
from the
it is

XIII

GIVE OFF

WATER

of the

water taken up by the plant?

"We have learned that the food which the plants take
soil is

taken up along with the water in which

dissolved.

We know
amount

that the solutions of plant
is

food must be weak, or the plant

not able to absorb
is

them.

A

large

of water, then,

taken up by

the plant in order to obtain even a small
food.

amount

of

We know
It
is

also that

water

is

taken up by the

roots of the plant independent of the food solutions
in
it.

of

great

interest, then, to

know what

becomes of the large amount of water absorbed by the
plant.

Some
it

plant, but
for food all

of the water is used as food by the would be impossible for a plant to use the water which it takes from the soil.

Loss of water by living leaves.
leaves, or several leafy shoots

Take a handful
plants.

of

from fresh

Place

them on the
in Fig. 130.

table

and cover them with a
its side,

fruit jar, as

Place another jar by
it.

but put no

leaves under

Be

sure that the leaves have

no

free

water on them and that the jars are dry.
94

In the

course of fifteen or twenty minutes you can see a thin

HOW PLANTS

GIVE OFF

WATER

95

film on tlie inner surface of the jar covering the leaves.

In fifteen or twenty minutes more
this is water, for it
is

it

will be seen that

accumulating in small drops

riG. 130.

To show

loss of

water from leaves, the leaves jast covered.

which become

larger

as

the

experiment continues.
then,

The other

jar is dry.

The water,
and

which

first

formed the mioisture

film,

later the drops,

on the

inner surface of the jar covering the leaves must come

Fig. 131.

After a few hours drops of water have accumulated on the inside of the jar covering the leaves.

from the

leaves.

We

see that

it

is

not only on the
leaves.

sides of the jar, but also

on the top above the
off

So the water did not run

the leaves.

96
Further,

THE WORK OF PLANTS
we cannot
see

any sign
jar, so

of water until
it

we
it

see it acciimulating

on the

that

naust pass off

from the leaves in a very
can
float in

light form, so light that

the air like dust without being visible.
is

When

water

in this
off

form in the

air

we

call it vapor.
the

The water passes
water vapor.
Loss
of

from

the leaves in

form of

water from

living

plants.

In the above

experiment the leaves were removed from the plant.
It
is

not certain from this
off

experiment whether the
leaf or

water passes

from the surfaces of the

from

the broken or cut ends of the petioles.

We

are going to test the living plant

in a similar way.

To do

this, place

a
or

potted plant under a

tall bell jar,

invert a fruit jar over the plant, after

having covered the pot and
several layers of oiled paper.

soil

with

a flexible oilcloth or sheet rubber, or

Tie the

paper close around the stem of the
plant to

prevent the evaporation of
soil

water from the
Fig. 132.
off

or pot.

During
i
i-

Water

is

given

Several
,

hours the moisture film can

by the leaves when attached to the living

De scen

lormmg on

j-

the mside oi the
it

t

.

i

glass vessel.
until

Gradually

accumulates
in

numerous drops are formed, some of which

time

may

trickle

down

the

side

of

the jar.

The

HOW

PLANTS GIVE OFF WATEE

97

accumulation of the moisture
a piece of

may

often be hastened

or increased at certain places on the jar by holding
ice

near the jar outside.

The

cold glass

condenses the water vapor into water again, in the

same way that the cold air above condenses the water vapor as it arises from the earth, first forming clouds and later raindrops. The living plant, then, loses water
through
its

surface in the

form of water

vapor.

A

delicate test for the

escape of water vapor from
delicate test for the escape

plants. of water

A very pretty and
Make

vapor from living plants can be made in this
a solution of a substance

way.

known

as cobalt

chloride in water.

Saturate several
pieces of filter paper

with

it.

Allow them

to dry,

and then dry

them

still

more

thor-

oughly

by holding
or in a

them near a lamp or
gas
jet,

warm

oven.

You

will ob-

serve that the water

solution of
chloride
is

cobalt

Fig. 133
off

red.

The
it is blue.

A good way to show that the water passes from the leaves in the form of water vapor.
.

wet

or

moist paper

IS

also

red,

but

when

it

is

thoroughly dry

It is so sensitive to moisture

98

THE WOEK OF PLANTS

that the moisture of the air is often sufficient to redden
the

paper.
bell jars, as

Take two
jar

shown
page

in Fig. 133.

In one

place

a potted plant,
as

the pot and earth being
96.

covered

described on

Or

cover the

plant with a fruit jar.

Pin to a stake in the pot a

piece of the dried cobalt paper,

and at the same

tinie

pin

to

a stake, in another jar covering no plant,

another piece of cobalt paper.

They should be

dried

and entirely blue when they are put into the
both should be put under
the jars at the

jars, and same time.

In a few moments the paper in the jar with the plant
will begin to redden.

In a short time, ten or
will

fifteen

minutes, probably,

it

be entirely red, while the

paper under the other jar wiU remain blue, or be only
slightly reddened.
the living

The water vapor passing

off

from
is

plant comes in contact with the sensitive cobalt
the

chloride in
sufficient

paper and reddens
to condense as

it

before

there

vapor present

a film of moisture
is

on the surface of the jar.

The

loss of

water from plants.

This

similar

to

evaporation, except that from a given area of leaf
surface less water evaporates than
of water surface.

It further differs

from an equal area from evaporation
be shown in the

in that the living plant is

enabled to retard or hold

back the

loss of water.

This

may

following way.

Pull

up

several

seedlings of beans,

HOW PLANTS
sunflowers,
etc.,

GIVE OFF

WATEE
of

99

and take some leaves

geranium or

other plants.
lots

lots, having in the an equal number of the various kinds. Immerse

Divide them into two

one

lot in boiling

water for a few moments to
also

kill

the

plants.
to

Immerse the other

lot in cool water, in order

have the living plants
In
twenty-four
killed

wet

at the beginning of

the experiment.
dry.

Spread both
hours
lost

lots out

on a table

to

examine them.

Those

which were
they are

have

much more water than

the living plants.
crisp.

Some of them may be dried so that The living plants are enabled to retard
is

the loss of water, so that the process of evaporation

hindered, not only

by the
loss

action of the

life

substance

within the plant, but also by a regulating apparatus
of the leaves.
these conditions

The

of water from plants under

we

call transpiration.

Does transpiration take place equally on both surfaces
of the leaf ?

This can be shown very prettily by using
Since this paper can be

the cobalt chloride paper.

kept from year to
year and used
peatedly,
it is

re-

a

very simple matter to

make

these

experiments. Provide two pieces of
Fig. 134.

The

glass

(discarded

holes (stomates) in the leaf bordered by the guard cells,

;

100

THE WORK OF PLANTS
two
pieces of

glass negatives, cleaned, are excellent),

cobalt chloride paper, and some geranium leaves enDry the paper until it tirely free from surface water. Place one piece of the paper on a glass plate is blue.

place the geranium leaf with the underside on the paper.

On

the upper side of the leaf

now
the

place the other cobalt paper,

and next

the second piece of glass.
pile place
FIG. 135.

On

a light weight to keep the

^^^^ ^g^ ^^ contact. lu fifteen or twenty minutes open and examine. The paper next
the underside

The stomate open.

under the

leaf.

of the geranium leaf is red where it lies The paper cm the upper side is only

slightly reddened.

The greater

loss of water,
leaf.

then, is

through the underside of the geranium
true of a great

This

is

many
But
will

leaves, as tests
it is

which you can
all.

make

will show.

not true of

Why

do

underside?

many You

leaves lose more water through the

not be able to see with your
it

eyes the mechanism in the leaf by which

can, to

some extent, control the escape of the water vapor.
It is too tiny. It

can only be seen by using a micro-

scope to look through pieces of the skin, or epidermis,
of the leaf

which we can
the leaf.

strip ofE.
if

Perhaps

it

will be
of

just as well for the present
it

you look at a picture
134 shows
little

made from

Fig.

holes

through the epidermis.

These open into spaces between

HOW PLANTS
the cells inside the
crescent,
if

GIVE OFF WATEE

101

leaf.

Two

cells,

each shaped like a
fit

you take a surface view,
cells.

in such a
it.

way
"We

around the opening that they stand guard over
call

them guard

During the day the guard
keep the
lose

cells

are filled tightly
cells

with water and press back against the other
little

and

holes {stomates) open.

At night they

some

of their water, so they are not so tight. collapse a
little,

They then

so that

their inner edges

close the opening.

come together and The water vapor cannot escape so fast when the stomates
are closed.

On

very sunny days during dry
if

weather,

the roots cannot give the
'^°{a^^\

plant enough water, the guard cells
lose

some

of their water, so that they

ae^ir spaces the leaf can aisote seen.

m

close up and prevent such a large escape would take place should they remain open.

of

water as
not

Is this

a good arrangement which the leaf has to prevent the Someloss of too much water during dry weather?
times, however, the ground gets so dry that the roots

cannot get enough water for the plant.
then wilt, and sometimes
Leaves help to
lift

The

plants

die.

water in the plant.

As

the water

evaporates or transpires from the surface of the leaves more water is drawn up into the leaf to take its place.

102
This work
is

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
done by the
can help
lift

tiny

cells

of

the leaf.

The

leaf, then,

water in the plant.

This

can be well shown by the experiment in Fig. 137.

A

leafy shoot of coleus, geranium, or other plant

is

cut,

and connected by a short piece of rubber tubing
to one

end of a bent, or U,
filled

tube which has been

with water so that the end
of the cut shoot
is

in con-

tact with the water.

The

rubber tube must be tied
tightly

both to the shoot
glass

and
the

to the

tube,
in.

so

that air cannot get

As

water transpires from
it'

the leaf

is

gradually
tube so

drawn from
that
it

the

lowers in the other

arm
this
Fig.
137.

of the tube.
is

When the
all

water
Showing that the leaf can water in tlie stem as it is given
the surface.

nearly

out of

arm, mercury
in,

may

be

raise

poured

and

after a time

off at

the mercury will be lifted
is

higher in the arm of the tube which
the plant than in the other.

connected with
is

Mercury

a great deal

heavier than water, so the leaves can do some pretty

hard work in

lifting.

HOW PLANTS
Can the
than the leaves can give
it

GIVE OFF

WATER

103

roots take the

water into the plant faster
off?

Here

is

a pretty experi-

ment

to

show the power

of root absorption.

Young

wheat plants growing in a pot will show it clearly
if

the pot

is

covered with

a fruit jar and the roots
are kept

warm.
this
is
it

Fig.

138

shows how
done.
If

can be

not sum-

mer time, when the soil in the pot would be quite

warm enough, may be set in
dust,

the

pot

a broad

pan of wet moss or sawand here covered ^^i
the
fruit jar.

with

A

flame from a spirit lamp

may be set so that it will warm the edge of the pan,
but the
soil in

Fig.

the pot

138. The roots are lifting more water into the plant than can be given otf in

the form of water vapor, so

it is

pressed

out in drops. must not be allowed to In a few hours or a day the leaves will get hot. appear beaded with the drops of water which are

pressed out.

There are

little

holes on the edge of

the leaf through which the water escapes.

These are

water stomates.

104

THE WOEK OE PLANTS

This condition of things sometimes happens at night

when

the

soil is

warm and

the air

damp and

cool, so

that the green leaves cannot transpire rapidly.
then, that root pressure exceeds transpiration.

We

say,

Wheji a

plant

ivilts

on a hot, dry day,
lift

it is

transpiring faster than
there is so little water

the roots
.in the

can

up water, because
Transpiration

dry

soil.

now

exceeds root pressure.

CHAPTER XIV
THE WATER PATH IN PLANTS

How

to determine the

water path.

ested to find the paths

by which,

so

You will be much water

inter-

flows

through the plant.
way.

These

may be shown

in a very easy
plants, or the

You may

cut

some garden-balsam
purpose.

wild Impatiens or jewel weed, or similar plants.
are very good ones for the
shoots
of

These

Cut

also

some

begonia

or

other plant with white
flowers. If there are corn

plants or wheat plants

half

grown

at

hand,

some
used.

of these should be

Use also some good bleached celery leaves cut from a bunch.
Set these shoots in a
vessel containing red ink.

Fig.

139.

and pea,

Shoots of garden balsam, begonia, in colored solution.

Or

if

preferred a red dye can

be

made by

dissolving one of the red "

diamond dyes

"

In a few hours, sometimes, the plants will show the red color in the leaves, or in the white petals. At least in a day they will begin to show the red color.
in water.
105

106

THE WORK OF PLANTS

There are several distinct water paths in the shoot.
Tliis

shows us in a very clear way that the red dye is taken up along with the water and stains

i

the plant.

In the garden balsam or the

jewel weed
streaks in
outside.

we can sometimes
the

see

red

shoot by looking at the

These mark the paths through
flows.

which the water
I

They

are better

seen

if

we

cut one of these colored shoots

in two.

In the cut shoot they will show

III
I

as small round red spots

where the colored

If
Portion

water has passed.

In splitting the stem

Fig.

140.

of stem of garden

they would appear as long red streaks or In these bundles there are tiny bundles.
..

balsam. The colored tracts show

tuoes or vessBls, througk

^

^

^

which

^

.

_

_

the

loater

outside^ of

the

flows.

Therefore

we

call the

water paths

in plants vascular bundles.

The arrangement

of the vascular bundles.

In cutting across the shoot of the garden
balsam, or coleus, or begonia, you will see
that these bundles have a regular arrange-

ment.
,

They

are in the
rrn

form
1
1

of a ring.
is,

These plants are annuals, that

they
.

live
»

fig. i«.
of

only one year,
1

ihere
TJ?

is

but one ring oi
at
J

bundles in them,

m

i_i

it

11 you look

cut end stem showing where the water
patlis are located.

the

j_i

stump

of

an oak tree or at the end of a
rings.

will see

many

log, you Each year the bundle grows in

THE WATER PATH IN PLANTS

107

an outward direction as the tree becomes larger. The vessels formed in the bundle in spring and early summer
are larger than those formed
in
late

summer.

When
As
all
lie

cut

across in the tree these vessels

look like pores.

the
close

bundles in the tree
side

by

side,

the larger pores

formed in the spring alternate each year with the smaller
Fig. 142.

Cross section of oak, show ing annual rings.

ones and form a ring.
ring
is

One each usually made

year as the oak tree grows, so that the approximate age of the tree can be told from the number of the rings.
in a corn stem.

The vascular bundles

If a young cornstalk was The red ink, cut it across.

in the red

spots

which

mark

the position of the bundles are
If

arranged irregularly.

a fresh-

growing cornstalk

is

not at hand, take
Fig. 143. Vascular bundles of corn stem

an old dried one. With a knife cut around and just through the outer hard
layer.

Then gently break it, pulling apart the two ends at the same time. As it breaks, the bundles puU out as stifE
pith,

("where

tlie

"water

paths are located).

strings in the
is

and

in this

way

the irregular arrangement

easily

108
seen.
also,

THE WOEK OF PLANTS

A

section of the stem of a

palm shows that

here,

the vascular bundles are arranged irregularly.

Plants with netted-veined leaves usually have ,the
vascular bundles
plants with

arranged regularly in rings, while
leaves

parallel-veined

usually have the

vascular bundles arranged irregularly.

of the veins

Compare the arrangementon the leaves of the
sunflower, oak,
etc.,

garden balsam, coleus, begonia,
bean, pea,

with

the

arrangement

of

the

vascular bundles.
netted-veined,
Fig. 144. Cross section of palm stem. There are no annual
rings.

The

leaves are

and the bundles are

in regular rings.

Compare the

veins in a lily leaf or in a blade

of corn, wheat, oat, or grass

with the arrangement of

the bundles.

The

leaves are parallel-veined,

bundles are arranged irregularly.
that the bean, pea, oak,
seedling,
etc.,

You

will

and the remember

have two cotyledons in the

and that the corn has only one.
kind of venation in the leaves, and what

What

arrangement of the vascular bundles are usually found
in plants with

two cotyledons
are these

?

In plants with a single

cotyledon

?

What

two large groups of plants

caUed

?

CHAPTER XV
THE LIVING PLANT FORMS STARCH
All OUT starch is formed

by

plants.

Starch

is

one of
It is

the essential foods of
also

man and

other animals.
in the

employed in many useful processes
or

manuIt

facture

dressing of numerous useful articles.

occurs in

many
is

vegetables and other plant foods which

we

eat.

Prepared starch, like cornstarch, used for
nearly or quite pure
plants.
starch.

puddings,
starch
is

All this
it

variety

made by of ways for
is

The

plants use
it,

in

a

food,

and much of

after being

formed,

stored in

some part
is

of the plant for future

use, as in certain seeds, roots, or tubers.

The potato
starch
is

tuber, for instance,

largely composed of starch.

Tincture of iodine colors starch blue.

When

wet or moist with water

it is

colored blue

by

iodine.

A

tincture of iodine can be obtained

from the drug
be dissolved in

store, or

a few crystals of iodine

may

alcohol.

In a test tube place a small quantity (as

much

as can be held

on the point of a penknife) of cornat the grocery.

starch,

which can be obtained

Pour

water into the test tube to a height of two inches. Hold the test tube over a flame for a few minutes to
109

110

THE WORK OF PLANTS
tlie

warm
or

water so

tliat

the starch will be well wetted. the tube in cold water,

Now cool it by moving the end of
by holding
it

in

running cold water from a hydrant.

Add

a few drops of the tincture of iodine.

The

liquid

immediately appears blue
because the

numerous

starch grains are colored

blue by

it.

Now hold the
few
it

end of the tube over the
flame again for a
minutes, but do not let
get hot.

The blue
because

color

disappears,

the

warm water
iodine

extracts the
starch.

from the

Cool the tube again and
the blue color reappears.

To test the starch
Fig.

in a

Cornstarch dissolved in water, and tincture of iodine added. At left the solution is cold, middle one is heated
145.

potatO tuber.
-

Cut a pOtatO

(Irish potato) in tWO,

and

slightly, at right it is cooled.

on the cut suriace scrape

some

of the potato into a pulp with a knife.

Apply
It

some

of the tincture of iodine to the potato pulp.
blue.

The potato, then, is largely made up of starch. Place some of the pulp in water in a test tube, and add a few drops of the tincture of iodine. Then
becomes
heat
it

gently to see

if

it

behaves like the cornstarch.

THE

LIVIISTG

PLANT FOEMS STARCH

111

Test for starch in Indian corn.

Split a kernel of

Indian corn and scrape out some of the endosperm or
meat.
test

Place

it

in water

and
the

with iodine.

What

is

result?

Test grains of sweet

corn in the same way.
is

What
in
to

The starch the sweet corn was changed
the result
?

sugar and stored in the seed in
the forrp of sugar.
Fis. 146.

The sugar
It is

Variegated leaf of grass
(white and green).

beet

is

a rBservoir for food.
,

it.. not stored as starch but as sugar.

Starch formed in green
leaves.

leaves

Take a few green which have been in
Immerse them
over-

the
day.

sunlight through the

night in a strong solution
of chloral hydrate in the

proportion of five ounces
of chloral hydrate^ to one-

half a tumbler of

water.

This will remove the green
color

and the leaves become
Fig.
147.

Variegated leaf of aoutilon.

ten ounces for Chloral hydrate can be obtained at the drug store, eight grams chloral hydrate to about one dollar. More accurately, use

5

o.c.

of -water.

112
pale.

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
Rinse the leaves for a
place

moment

in fresh, water.
^

Then
leaves

them

in a tincture of iodine

solving iodine crystals in alcohol.

made by disIn a few moments the
in color,

become dark purple-brown
the color given to starch

sometimes

nearly black, with a more or less blue or purplish tinge.

This

is

when it

takes

up

iodine.

The experiment shows us that starch
But
if

is

present in the

green leaves which have been for some time in the light.

we

should keep the plant in the dark for a
test

day or two, and then

some

of the leaves

we should

find

no starch present.
is

Where starch

formed in the

variegated leaves of the coleus plant.

The

leaf

of

the coleus
is, it

plant

is

variegated, that
colors.

has difEerent

In this one which we are
is

to study, part of the leaf

green

and part
der,

is

white, the green occupy-

ing the middle portion and the borFig.
148.

Variegated leaf of

while the white forms a V.

coleus plant, in fresh condition.

figure between.

We

wish to know

which part

of the leaf forms starch.

We

will

immerse some of these variegated leaves in the

strong solution of chloral hydrate overnight.
1

Now they
Or

The

tincture of iodine can be purchased at the drug store.

one-quarter ounce of the crystals of iodine

may be

purchased and a few

placed in alcohol as needed.

THE LIVING PLANT FORMS STAECH

113

are almost entirely white, the chlorophyll having been

We v?ill rinse them a moment in water and then place them in the tincture of iodine. Those
removed.
portions

which were
that

green

are

now

quite dark, while the V-shaped

figure,

or

part which

was

white, remains white in the iodine
or does not take the dark color.

The green part of the leaf, then, forms starch. We have now learned
that the leaf -green as well as simlight is necessary to

The

leaf-green cannot

in the dark,

make starch. make starch nor can the light make

riG.

149.

Similar leaf after

starch in portions of a leaf which

green color is removed and treated with iodine to show
location of starch.

have no leaf-green.
Starch is formed in the green leaf during the day, but

what becomes
light

of it at night ?

In the afternoon

let

us

cover a part of a leaf in such a

way

as to shut out the

from that

spot.

Take two

corks, place one

on

either side of the leaf, covering a small circular portion,

and thrust two pins through the edge
pin
it

of one cork to

fast to the other.

From

our former experiments
all

we know

that at this time of day

parts of the green

leaf contain

starch, so that the part covered

by the
contains
in

corks, as well as the uncovered portion,
starch.

now

On the following day at noon, or

the

114
afternoon,

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
we
will take this
it

same

leaf,

remove the

corks,

and immerse
solution to
it

overnight in the strong chloral -hydrate
color.

remove the green
it

Now we

will rinse

and place

in the tincture of iodine.

The part of the leaf which was
by
the

covered

corks

does not show the
starch reaction, while
the other

parts of the

leaf do.

So

it

must
dis-

be that the starch
piG.
150.

Pumpkin

leaves

;

at

left portion of
;

appeared f rom the leaf
.

leaf covered to

leaf treated with iodine,

keep out sunliglit at right same no starch where leaf was

,

at nigllt, tliat
,

covered.

starch

i

nCW was made m
,

i.x^

±.

t

>

the parts exposed to the light, and that no starch

was

formed in the part covered from the

light.

When
it

the starch disappears from the leaf where does
Is
it

go?

found in other parts of the plant not

exposed to the light?

How

does

it

get there, and
is

where does

it

starch stored

come from? For what purpose up in reservoirs?

the

CHAPTER XVI
THE WORK DONE BY PLANTS IN MAKING STARCH
Plants do work.
It

seems strange that plants work

yet

it is

quite true.

Some
too.

plants do a great deal of

Plants work when they make starch, though, as we have seen, they cannot do this work without the help of light.. But light, without the leaf-green and the living plant, cannot make
starch.

work, and hard work

We

cannot see the work which the green
it is
is

plant does, but
tell

easy to see some of the signs which

that the

work

going on.

We must
work.

learn to read

the sign language.

How

water plants

tell of this

Let us select
in ponds,

some water weeds,
lakes, or streams.
is

or leafy plants

which grow

A very good
when
this

plant for this purpose

the elodea, but

cannot be found others

may

be obtained which will serve quite as well.

The

plants

may

be brought to the room and placed in a

bottle of water

which

is set in

the window, so that they

will get the sunlight, or the brightest light

which may

be had

if

the day

is

cloudy.

In a very short time
first,

bubbles of gas collect on the leaves, small ones at

but increasing in

size until

they are freed.

Then they

115

116
rise to

THE WOEK OE PLANTS
the surface of the water.

Some

of the plants

should be placed in an inverted position in the bottle so
that the cut end of the shoot will be below the surface.

From

this cut

end of the shoot bubbles

of the gas come out more rapidly than

from the
is

leaves.

Most

of the gas,
leaves,

it

true,

came from the
cells,

but

there are air spaces all through the

plant between the

so that the

gas which

is

formed in the leaves can

pass out not only at tiny openings in

the

leaf,

but also through the connect-

ing spaces in the stems.

The more
the

light there is the faster
If the bottles con-

work

goes on.

taining these water plants are kept in

the
is
Fig. 151. The " tell-tale bubbles rising from a
','

window

for several days,

and there

cloudy weather as well as sunshine,
will notice that the bubbles of gas

you

water plant.

come out more rapidly on a sunshiny

The more, light there is, more work the plant can do. This can be Remove the bottle from the wintold in another way. dow and put it in a poorly lighted corner of the room. The gas is given off more slowly. Gover the bottle
day than on a cloudy one.
then, the

with dark cloth to shut out
minutes uncover
it.

all light.

In ten or fifteen

The escape

of the gas has ceased.

WOEK DONE
Now

IN

MAKING STAECH

117

place it in the brightly lighted window again. The bubbles soon start up afresh. Do the "pond scums" do the same kind of work? Many of you have seen the green-looking " scum," as some people call it, which floats on the surface of ponds
or on the water of ditches,

and which

is

so

abundant in

the spring and autumn.
better name, for
it is

This pond scum deserves a

really

made up

of beautiful tiny

plants, often consisting of silk-like threads,

which we

can see by
that
it

lifting a bit of it

from the water.

To

see

does the same kind of

work

as the leafy water

plant, place

some in a

bottle of water

and

set it in the

window by the

side of the other plants.

The
as

tell-tale

bubbles show themselves here also.

Now

you
it

have perhaps noticed that
floats

this

pond scum,

on the water, has a great
bubbles in
it,

many
some

caught in the

tangle of threads.

If

you take up
it

of this tangle, rinse
all
it

in the

water to remove

the bubbles,

and then replace
it

in the water;

does not float well, but tends to

sink to the bottom.

But when the
JP'ig-ib2.

bubbles of gas begin to form again c? ^ ^ and are caught in the meshes of
the tangle, they are so

Bubwes

rising

from

pond scum

in sunligtt.

much

lighter than water that
lift
it

they buoy up the plant and

once more to the

118

THE WORK OF PLANTS
Here the plant can get more
light,

surface of the water.

more

air,

and

so do

more work

of various kinds.
trees,

The leaves

of garden herbs

and shrubs,

and other

land plants do the same kind of work.

But

since they do

not grow in water they do not show the signs of this

work

as water plants do.
it

At
is

least,

signs of

because the gas

so

we cannot see the much like the air in its
leaf

nature.
of

Perhaps you have put a lettuce leaf or a

some other land plant under water, and have been
which
rise
is

told that the bubbles

from the

leaf in the

water are a sign that the leaf

doing work in starch-

making.

But

this brings the land plant into
it

an unfaall

vorable environment, and

soon

dies.

Not

the

bubbles given

off are of

the same kind of gas as that
plant, so

given

off

by the water

that this

must be

regarded as a misleading experiment.-'
1

When

the leaf of a land plant

is

placed in water there
leaf.

is

always
is

a thin layer of air over the surface of the

If the water

exposed to the sunlight, there
bubbles.

is

a

rise in the

temperature which causes
it rises

the air around the leaf to expand, and some of

in the form of

This

may
is

continue for a considerable time.

Some of the

air

inside the leaf
ture.

This air

crowded out because of the change in temperathat is rising from the leaf because of the change in
also

is not the same kind of gas that rises from the water plant from the pond scum. We cannot distinguish between the two kinds of gas as they rise together from the land plant in the water. Therefore it is no sign that the plant is doing the work, but only an evidence that a change in temperature is going on which expands the air and causes some of it to be freed from the surface of the leaf. The same thing can be seen if we place a piece of broken crockery or a dry

temperature
or

WORK DONE
What
uses
so necessary to plants,

IN MAKING STAECH

119
is

use the plant makes of starch.

Since starch

we ought
of

to
it.

know some
It helps to
is

of the

which the plant makes
life

make

new

substance in the plant.
life

This
is

necessary, not

only because more

substance

needed as the plant

becomes larger, but because, in one kind of work which
the plant does, some of the
life

substance

is

consumed.

We

must understand that when the starch helps to form new life substance it no longer exists as starch but is
assimilated along with other foods which the root takes

The making of starch is not the making of the life It must he assimilated with the other food substance.
up.
substances taken

up by
the

the root

from

the soil, or

by the
is

water plant
m,ade.

from

water, before living rnaterial

When we
on by certain
organs.
solved.

eat solid food substances they are acted
juices of the

mouth, stomach, and other
is

A

part of the food

thus digested and

dis-

These food solutions are then absorbed through
In the blood vessels they are finally carried to

the surface of the large intestine, where they enter the
blood.
all

parts of the body, where they

come
is

in contact with

the living matter.
wood

The

digested food

now assimilated

and then set the vessel in the light. To show do the same kind of work which the water plants indicate by the bubble sign would be too difficult an experiment for
piece of

in water,

clearly that land plants

young persons.

120

THE WOEK OF PLANTS

and helps to make new living matter to replace that which has been used up in growth or work.

The

case with the plants
is is

is

their structure, of course,

somewhat similar, though very different. The starch
it is

made

in the green leaf

the solid food, though
It

not taken in by the plant in that form.
digested and changed to a form of sugar
life

must be

by the action of a juice (a ferment) in the Here it meets other food substances absorbed by the roots. Then by a process of assimilation similar to that which
substance.

takes place in our

own

bodies,

new

living material

is

made.
So while plants and animals get their food by
ent methods, and in different forms,
into living material in the
it is

differ-

finally

made

same way.
life

The

life sub-

stance of plants

is

the same as the

substance of

animals.

CHAPTER XVII
THE KIND OF GAS WHICH PLANTS GIVE OFF WHILE MAKING STARCH

How
what
of
it

to catch this gas in a tube.

We

are interested
if

to learn

more

of this gas,

and to know,

possible,

it is.

We

can catch some

in a tube in the following

way.
or

We

will take the elodea

some

other
it

suitable

water

plant.
jar

Place

in a tall,

wide
it

and invert a funnel over
that the

so

small

end of the

funnel will be under the surface
of the water.

Sink a test tube

in the water,

and then, without
end of the
it

bringing the open

tube out of the water, invert

and lower

it

over the end of the
Set

funnel as shown in Fig. 153.

the jar in the sunlight and leave
it

there for several days, arrang-

Fig. 153.

CatoUng the bubbles

ing

something

to hold
it

down
121

of gas in a test tube.

the tube in case

becomes

full of the

buoyant gas.

122

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
as
it is

The gas now,
rises
it

given

off

from the water

plant,

through

tlie

funnel and into the test tube where

accumulates in the upper end and gradually displaces

the water.

In several days so
is

much

gas has accumu-

lated that perhaps the tube

full of it

and empty

of

water.

We

are

now

ready to test for the kind of gas.

How

to test for the gas.

We

wish

now

to bring a

glowing splinter into the end of the

test tube before

the gas escapes, and without wetting the splinter in water.

We

light

a long, soft pine
splinter
it

and hold
hand,

in

one

while with the other we grasp
the upper end of
the test tube, which

should be freed
it

if

was tied down. Blow out the flame on the splinter,
the

leaving

coal

glowing.
Via. 154.

Quickly

Eeady

to see

what the gas

is.

lift

the tube from

the water and thrust the glowing end of the splinter
into the test tube.
is

oxygen, for

The we know that the oxygen
It flames again
!

gas, then, of the air

GAS WHICH PLANTS GIVE OFF
is

123

necessary in

making a

fire

so that

it

will

consume

the wood, or coal, or other material.

The reason the glowing
the air
is

splinter does not flame in
is

because the proportion of oxygen
to
is

not great

enough

ignite
so

it.

But there
test tube

much
in the

oxygen caught

from the plant
Fig.
ISS.

that the glowing coal
readily flames again.

The splmter lights again presence of oxygen gas.

m the

How
just

is

the gas formed ?

It is difficult to

show here

how this

gas
is

is

formed, for a considerable knowledge
it

of chemistry

necessary to understand

thoroughly.

But perhaps you have learned about some of the chemical compounds, as they are called, and how they sometimes change their combinations and associations.
let

First

us boil some water.
it

When

it

is cool,

put a water
is

plant in
off.

and
is

set it in the sunlight.

This

queer behavior,

No gas you may say.

givfn

But

it

shows us that something was
boiling drove
off,

in the water

which the
This was

and which
If

is

necessary for the plant
set free.

in order that the
air

oxygen may be

and carbonic

acid.^

we

introduce air and carbon

dioxid into the water, oxygen

will soon be given off again

by the plant,
1

since

it
is

can

now

absorb carbonic acid.
form of carbonic
acid, since it ia

The carbon dioxid

here in the

in water.

124

THE WOEK OF PLANTS
this takes place in land plants.

How
air,

In the case of

land plants, the leaves of which are surrounded with
not water, the plant absorbs carbon dioxid.
air consists of

You
about

perhaps have been told that the
tiventy-one,

parts of

djrifgen gas,

seventy-nine parts of

rtxtxogen gas, and a very small fraction of carhon-dioxid
gas.

The carbon-dioxid constituent
;

is

a chemical com-

pound
There

that

is, it is

composed

of

two elements united.

is

one part of carbon and there are tioo parts
it

of oxygen, and
so soon as they

is

written thus, CO2.

The carbons
tightly, but

and oxygens hold on to each other very

come
it

in contact with water they quickly

take up some of
explains

and form carbonic

acid.

This

how

the carbon dioxid in the air for the land

plants becomes carbonic acid in the water for water
plants.

Water

is

a

compound composed
its

of hydrogen,

tivo

p^ts, and oxygen, one part, and
thus, H2O.

symbol

is

written

As

soon, however, as the carbon dioxid of
it

the air

is

absorbed by the leaves of the land plants

comes into direct contact with the water

in their cells,

and forms immediately carbonic

acid, just as it does

when

it

dissolves in the water

which surrounds water
then
is

plants.

The symbol

of the carbonic acid

CH2O3,

since in the united

bon

to

compounds there is one part of carevery two parts of hydrogen and three parts of

oxygen.

GAS WHICH PLANTS GIVE OFF

125

Now the carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen in the carbonic acid do not hold on to each other very tightly. When
they get into the green of the leaf and the sunlight
flashes in,

hurry to

them apart very easily, and they form new associations or compounds which
it

drives

the sunlight cannot break.

Perhaps

it is

because they
are not

hurry

so,

that the
;

new

associations they

make

permanent
a

at all events these are soon broken

and

others formed, until finally the elements unite in such

way

as to

form sugar

in the leaf.

this sugar is CeHiaOg.

To

get this

The symbol for it was necessary
This
all

for six parts of the carbonic acid to combine.

would take
over.

all

of the carbon

and

of the hydro-

gen, but there would be twelve parts of oxygen left

This oxygen

is

then

set free.
is

From

the great

amount

of carbonic acid

which

broken up in the

leaf under these conditions, a considerable

amount

of

oxygen would be
After the sugar
goes out of
for starch.
it,

left
is

over and set free from the plant.

formed, one part of water (HgO)
is

leaving CgHioOg, which

the symbol

CHAPTER XVIII
HOW PLANTS BREATHE
Do plants breathe ?
lungs as
Yes.

But

if

plants do not have
are

we do, how can they breathe ? There many animals which do not have lungs, as
starfish,

the

the oyster, the

worm,

etc.,

and yet

they breathe.
respiration.

Breathing in animals
is

we

call

So in plants breathing

respiration.

Respiration in germinating seeds.

Soak a

handful of peas for twenty-four hours in water.

Remove them from

the water and put

them

in

a bottle or a fruit jar.

Cork tightly
cemented to

or cover with a piece of glass, the

underside of which
the

is

mouth of the jar with vaseline to make it air-tight. Keep it in a moderately warm room for twentyfour hours. Keep an empty bottle covered in the same way. Light a
taper or a splinter, and as the cover
is
Fig. 156. Peas germinating in a closed jar.

removed from the

jar thrust the

lighted end into the jar.

The flame

is

extinguished,

Now light the taper
126

again, uncover the

HOW PLANTS BEEATHE
empty
into
it.

127
of the taper

bottle

and thrust the lighted end
is

The flame
off

not extinguished.
in the first jar.

A

suffocating

gas, carbon dioxid,

was

This gas

is

given

by the germinating
in the jar, so

peas.
it

Being confined
it

much
or

of

accumulated that

smothered the flame.
Lime-water
baryta-water
is

a test for

carbon-dioxid gas.
I

Make some
it

lime-water by dissolving lime in

water and allowing

to settle.

Baryta-water

is

even better.
of
it

Make a
hydrate.

saturated solution
Filter;
off

barium

or allow

to settle,
It

and then pour

the clear liquid.

should be kept corked

when not

in use.

Take some

in a shallow vessel.

Open

the jar containing the germinating peas

and pour from
Fig.
is

it

some
is

of the carbon-

dioxid gas into the baryta-water.
157.

(The

Tlie light

smothered in
germinating

carbon-dioxid gas
therefore flows
is

heavier than air and

the gas given off

by

peas.

tipped.)

downward when the jar Cover the jar again. Immeis

diately on pouring the carbon dioxid into the baryta-

water, a white substance
1

-^

formed.
is

Chemists

tell

us

Barium carbonate,
is

if

baryta-water
is

used, or calcium carbonate,

if

lime-water

used.

Lime-water

easier to obtain,

but the results
lime-water, take

are not so striking as with barytarwater.

To make

128

THE WORK OF PLANTS
is

that this white substance

formed by the union of

carbon dioxid and baryta-water.
baryta-water

Pour some of the
formed.

down

the sides of the jar and on the peas.
is

Notice the white substance which

Carbon dioxid from our breath.
lime-water or

Take some of the fresh baryta-water and breathe upon it. This
is

same white
as

precipitate

formed, because there

is

a quantity of the carbon dioxid exhaled from our lungs

we

breathe.

It is interesting to
life

show

this close

agreement between plant

and animal

life.

Plants take in oxygen gas while they breathe.
require

Plants

oxygen in the process
respiration
consists

of respiration just as
is

animals do.
concerned,

So far as the movement of the gases
in

the taking in of

oxygen gas into the plant or animal body, and the
giving
off of

carbon dioxid.
air is

To show that oxygen from the
plants breathe.
in water.

used up while

Soak some wheat
it

for twenty-four hours
it

the folds

Remove of damp

from the water and place
begins to germinate.

in

cloth or paper in a moist vessel.
it

Let

it

remain until

Fill the

bulb of a thistle tube with the germinating wheat.

By

the aid of a stand and clamp, support the tube upright,
a

lump

of lime twice the size of a hen's egg

and put

it

in a quart

two pour off the clear liquid cork in a bottle before using. The white substance formed when lime-water is used is due to the union of the lime-water and the carbon dioxid.
it

of water.
I

AUow

to settle

and in a day

or

HOW
as

PLAJSTTS

BREATHE

129

shown

in Fig. 158.

Let the small end of the tube

rest in a strong solution of caustic potash (one stick

caustic potash in two-thirds tumbler of water) to

which

Place a small glass plate over the rim of the bulb and seal it air-tight with an abundance
of vaseline.
set

red ink has been added to give a deep red color.

Two tubes
set

can be

up

in one vessel, or a second

one can be
baryta -water

up

in

strong
in

colored

the

same way.
The
rises

result.

You

will see that

the solution of caustic potash

slowly in the tube.
if

The
that

barytarwater wiU also,
is

The solution is colored so that you can plainly see it rise in the tube, even if you are
used.
at a little distance

from

it.

In

Fig. 158. Apparatus to show " breathing " of germinating

the experiment the solution in
six hours

wheat.

had

risen to the height
it

shown

in Fig. 158.

In twenty-four hours
in Fig. 159.

had

risen to the height

shown

Why

the solution of caustic potash rises in the tube.

Since no air can get into the thistle tube from above

or below,
is

it

must be that some part
tube
is

of the air

which
is

inside

the

used up while the wheat

130
germinating.

THE WORK OF PLANTS
From our study
The
of germinating peas
is

we
off

know

that a suffocating gas, carbon dioxid,

given

while they breathe.

caustic potash solution or the
is

baryta-water, whichever
dioxid.

used, absorbs the carbon

The carbon dioxid is heavier than air, and so settles down in the tube, where it can ___^^^__

^"'.^
IT

^

be absorbed.

Where does the carbon dioxid come from? We know it comes from the
breathing,
will

growing seedlings.

You

remember that the symbol for The carbon carbon dioxid is CO2.
comes from the plant, because there
not enough in the
air could
air.

is

The
it

nitro-

gen of the
carbon to

not join with the
;

make CO2

so

must be

that some of the oxygen of the air
joins with the carbon of the plant.
FIG.
159.

The same

later,

ygg,

it

doeS

;

but the OXygeU
it

is

firSt

absorbed by the plant.

When

gets into the living

plant substance, some of the carbon breaks
its

away from
to
air.

association with the living substance

and hurries

join the oxygen,

and together they escape into the
see that

When plants breathe fast they are From what we have just learned we
the living plant

doing more work.

some

of

substance

is

used up or consumed a
fire

while the plant breathes.

When

burns, oxygen

HOW PLANTS BEEATHE
is

131

taken from the

air

and

joins with carbon in the
is

wood

or in the coal, and carbon dioxid
is

set free.

This joining of oxygen and carbon

called oxidation.

In the living plant the joining of the oxygen from the
air

with the carbon in the plant takes place slowly, so
fire is

that no flame or

made, but

it is still

oxidation.

Oxidation takes place slowly in animals in the same

way when they

are breathing.

But while the plant
it

is

being partly oxidized or consumed as

breathes, this

very thing enables

it

to

do more work, in growth

and in other ways.
breathe faster.
to get

When you
of your

run or play hard, you

A part

body must be oxidized
;

power or energy

to play

or to

work

either, for

play

is

one kind of work.

The carbon dioxid which is given off is one form of the waste from your body, or from the plant's body, while work of this kind is going on. To take the place of this waste you must eat, and you know how hungry you are when you are growing and playing. You need
a great deal of food to

make new
it

living materials to
is

take the place of the waste, and to supply what

needed for growth.

So

is

with plants

;

they need

food for growth, and to repair waste.

Part

III

THE BEHAVIOE OF PLANTS
CHAPTER XIX
THE SENSITIVE PLANT

One

of

the most interesting manifestations
is

joi

life

movement of the leaves in the The plant so-called sensitive plant {Mimosa pudica). may be easily grown from the seed in pots, either in a
in plants

the rapid

Fig. 160.

Leaf of sensitive plant.

greenhouse or in the window of a room,
tected from the hot rays of the sun.
in late spring will bring forth

if

it

is

pro-

The seed planted

good plants ready for

use in late

summer

or during the autumn.
132

THE SENSITIVE PLANT
Appearance of the sensitive plant.
the sensitive plant are rather large.

133

The

leaves

of

A

leaf is

com-

posed of a large number of

leaflets (pinnce)

arranged

in pairs along four different axes,

which are joined to
as the toes of
is

a stalk (the petiole of the

leaf)

somewhat

a bird are joined at the foot.
in Fig.

A

single leaf

shown

160 attached to the shoot.

Imagine

a branched shoot with a number of these
leaves and

you

will

know how

the sensitive

plant looks.

Movement
plant.

of the leaves of the sensitive

When you

wish to

test the plant, it

should be on a bright day, though the plant
will

work on a cloudy day
It

also

if it is

not

too dark.
quiet for

must be

left

undisturbed and

some time before

using.
it

We

must

be careful not to touch or jar
are ready.

until

we
Pig. IGl.

Now, with a
fingers, pinch

pair of forceps, or with the
leaflets.

one of the terminal

Movement of the leatlets after pinchmg one:

Instantly the terminal pair clasp or fold together above
the axis.

Then the second

pair do the same,

and the
This
until

third and fourth pairs follow quite

regularly.

movement
all

continues, successive pairs closing
closed.

up

on the axis are up

Then the
are
closed.

last pairs

on the
time,

other three axes fold together, and successive pairs on
these close
until
all

By

this

134

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
drawn

probably, the four axes which bear the leaflets are
closer together.

The

stalk of the leaf

is

also likely to

turn downward, and the entire leaf presents the appearance

shown

in Fig. 162.

When we
was given
stimulus.

pinched the

leaflet,

there
call

to the leaf

what we

a

The
in to

stimulus

travels

all

through the
leaf,

and

response
it

the move-

ment

takes

Fig. 162. Position of leaf after movement has ceased.

place.

If

we

jar

a sensi-

tive plant suddenly, all the

leaves close up

and assume
position,

a

drooping

as
Fig. 163.

shown

The

sensitive plant

in Pig. 163.

after jarring.

THE SENSITIVE PLANT
Behavior of

135

the leaves at night or on dark days.

On

a dark day the leaves of the sensitive plant are
;

folded together

or

if

we

take the plant into a poorly
;

lighted room, the leaves will close
it

then

if

we

bring

out to the light they will open again.

So at night-

fall

the leaves fold together, and the sunlight of the
is

following day

necessary before they will open again.

This teaches us one of the influences which light exerts

on

plants.

This plant

is

very sensitive to contact with

other objects or to shock; but

we

see that

it is

also

sensitive to light, for the leaves will

open in a short

time when brought into the
called^

light.
it

The mimosa
reality,

is

the sensitive plant because
stimulus
or shock.

responds so quickly

to
all

contact

In

however,

plants are

more

or less sensitive,

some being more

so than others.

This

we

can readily see

by observing

the relation of other plants to the light.

CHAPTER XX
THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS TOWARD LIGHT
Compare plant stems grown
in sunlight

with those

grown in darkness.
flower,

When

planting seeds of the sunetc.,

pumpkin, buckwheat, pea, wheat, or corn,
place

some

of the pots

under tight boxes

to exclude the light.

The

pots should be

covered as soon as the seeds are planted so
that no light will reach the young
seedlings.

They should remain covered for two or three weeks or more. They can be safely
uncovered
ally,

occasion-

for a

few mo-

ments at a time, to
supply the necessary

water and to compare

them with the
Fig. 164.

seed-

lings started at the
one at left grown in dark, one at right of same age grown in light.
seedlings
;

Pumpkin

same
light.

time,

in

the

Observe the plants about twice each week.

Make

measurements

of

the

growth;
136

sketch,

and keep a

BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS TOWAED LIGHT
record of the observations.

137
rap'

Do the stems grow more
?

Compare the leaves on the plants grown in the dark with those grown in the Compare the leaves of the light. wheat grown in the dark with those grown in the light. How does the wheat differ from the pumpkin, sunidly in the light or in the dark
flower, or similar plant in this respect
?

Fig. 164, left-hand plant,

shows a

pumpkin seedling grown in the dark. The right-hand plant in the same Fig. 165. Buckwheat seedlings grown in light. figure is another of the same age grown in the light. The stem grown in the dark is much longer than the one grown in
the light.

These plants are about one
Fig.

week

old.

166 represents seedin the

lings of

buckwheat grown

dark

they are longer than
those of the same

age grown in the
light.

Are the stems

grown
In
Fig.
166.

in

light
the

stouter and firmer?

comparing

Buckwheat seedlings of same grown m aarK.

age,

geedlingS grOWn in o o

138

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
the dark with those
there
is

grown

in the light

another striking difference befail

tween them which we cannot
observe.

to

The stems grown

in the dark

are longer, but they are less firm, and

they are not capable of supporting themselves so well as the stems
light.

grown

in the
in the

This

is

well

shown even

week-old seedlings of the buckwheat, as
seen in Fig. 166.

They cannot support
their

own

weight, but

fall o.ver

and hang
side of the
is

down by the
pot.

This

also in Fig.
is

marked 169, which
seedling
It

a later stage of the

pumpkin
shown
is

in Fig. 164.

now three weeks old,
all this

and has grown

time in the dark.

To

support the stems they

were tied to a stake.

Those grown
Fig.

in

the

light are stouter
167.

and

Sunflower
;

Fio. 168.
lings

suDflower seedin dark, older

firmer and are able to

seedlii

grown

in

grown

dark.

(Nat. size.l

thaninFig.167. (Iteduoed.)

SUppOrt themSclveS. If

BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS TOWARD LIGHT
we
crush these steins with the fingers,

139

we

find those

grown in the light firmer than those grown in the dark. A more accurate test would be to dry the plants thoroughly and then to weigh them. The plants grown in the light would outweigh those grown
in the dark.

In other words, they have
It will

made more

plant substance.

remembered that
be

green

plants

form
starch in
sunlight.

The
of
it,

starch
in

is

used,

much
cell

making new plant
especially

substance,
walls,

which constitute the
the reason, then,

firmer portions of plants.

This
li^G. 169.

is

Same

seedlings

shown

in Fig. 164,

why

the stems

l)nt older.

the dark are

grown in more slender

and

less firm

than those grown in the

light.

The leaves on plants grown in the dark. While stems grow less rapidly in light than in dark, light accelerates Plants grown in the dark the growth of the leaves.
have very small or undeveloped leaves.
This
is

well

shown

in the

pumpkin

(Fig. 169).

Compare the

leaves

140

THE BEHAVIOE OF PLANTS

on the plant grown in the dark with those on the plant

grown

in the light.

The

plants are of the

same

age.

Light, then, increases the size of

the leaves of such plants as the

pumpkin, sunflower, buckwheat,
etc.

How

is

it

with the wheat
?

and similar plants

Do the cotyledons

of the

pump-

kin or squash open in the dark ?

As the cotyledons of the pumpkin slip from the seed coats and are pulled out of the ground by the
loop,
Fig.

they are clasped tightly

together.
Sunflower seedlings grown in light, just covered to exclude light.
170.

But

as

they are straightening up in the

light

they spread apart and expand.
causes

What

them

to

open and expand ?

Let us cover some pumpkin seedlings

which have grown

in the light,

and in

which the cotyledons have just expanded.

The box should be

tight so that the seed-

lings will be kept in the dark.

Allow
;

them to remain here a day or two then remove the box sometime near mid-day. The cotyledons are clasped together and
erect, as in Fig. 171.

Pin.

171.

lings

Same seedafter being

covered two days.

Now

leave

them uncovered; the

BEHAVIOE OF

PLAISTTS
If

TOWARD LIGHT

141

cotyledons open again.

we examine them
light

at night

when
and
again.

it is

dark,

we

usually find

them clasped together

erect.

As the morning
light,

The

comes on they open then, must have an influence in
refer
to

spreading the cotyledons apart.

We
lings,

should

now

our

observations on the squash seed-

grown

in the dark, or

if

we

did not then observe the cotyledons,

we

should at once examine
of the in

some seedlings
squash,

pumpkin
The
Fig.

or
as

grown

the dark,

shown

in Fig. 164.

cotyle-

dons remain closed.

169
,

is
it
f»<5-

very interesting

;

the stem as
its

"2. same seedlings after exposure to llglit again.

grows

IS

obliged to push

way

out from between the cotyledons at one side, so tightly
are they clasped together.

These cotyledons have never
light.

opened because they have been kept from the
Arrangement
of

leaves

in

relation

to

light.

The

position of the leaves
is
it

on

plants,

whether the plant

small or large,

is

such as to place the leaf so that
light.

will receive an abundance of

The

relation of
is

the leaves of a given plant to one another
to give all the leaves

such as

an opportunity

to receive light

with the least possible interference.
different types in this respect

Plants of several

may

be brought into the

;

.

142

THE BEHAVIOE OF PLANTS
may make
comparisons
fields

class-room so that the pupils

although such observations should be made in

and gardens whenever

possible.

Influence of light on the

day position

of leaves.

Light

has great influence on the position of the leaves during
the day, just as
it

has on the position
of the

pumpkin
"which

cotyledons

we havestudied, or

just

on the

leaves of the sensitive plant.
It acts

as

a

stimulus to

adjust the leaf so

that the light will
fall full

upon the

upper surface, or

nearly so. some plants
position

In
this

becomes
less fixed.

more or

But
Tig.
173.

in

other
tUC

Young sunflower plant

;

at left in light, at right to shut out light.

pJ-aUtS, llKC

after being covered

two days

SUUflower

bean

and many more, the leaves change their position night and day. The leaves usually occupy a drooping
oxalis,

BEHAVIOE OF PLANTS TOWARD LIGHT
position at night,

143

and on the following morning they
influence of light into the

are brought
tion again.

by the

day

posi-

This drooping position

of leaves at night has been

termed
not in

the " sleep of plants," but

it is

any sense a

sleep.

" In the " compass

plant the leaves stand vertical and

point north and south.

The night position
to unequal growth.

of leaves is

due

When
This

the leaves

are

young and

in the bud, they closely
is

overlap one another.

due to

the fact that growth takes place

more

rapidly on the under surface of the

young

leaf.

This causes the leaf to
in,

curve upward and
of the stem.

over the end

But

as the leaves be-

come

older,

growth takes place more
This

rapidly on the upper surface.
causes
later

them to curve outward and downward so that they occupy
This can be
Fig. 174. Young sunflower, plant turned toward light

a drooping position.

demonstrated by covering for several

from window.

days a bean plant, or by covering an oxalis plant for a
day, so that
it

will be entirely in the dark. in a pot
old.

To illustrate it here a sunflower plant grown was used, the plant being four or five weeks

It

144

THE BEHAVIOE, OE IPLANTS

was covered one day, and then at noon on the followThe leaves of the ing day the box was lifted off. sunflower were in the position shown in Fig. 173, the
right-hand plant.

This shows that

if

the plant

is

in

darkness the leaves droop, and the drooping has nothing
to

do with night time, except that the light stimulus then removed.
the plant
is

is

When
exposed

to the light, the light

draws the

leaf

up

into

the day position.

The leaves
plants

of many-

turn so as to

face the light.

From

some of the foregoing
studies

we

learn that
plants
to

the leaves of
Fig.
175.

Sunflower with young head turned

are

sensitive

toward morning sun.

the

They stand

so that the rays of light fall full

stimulus of light. upon the

upper surface.

In the open, the leaves of

many

plants

stand so that the upper surface receives the light directly from above, as the light from this direction in cloudy

days

is

strongest.

The

leaves of

many

other plants

change their positions through the day if the sun is shining, so that their upper surfaces face the sun
directly, or nearly so, at all

times of the day.

BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS TOWARD LIGHT
Turning of the sunflower plant toward the sun.
the, period of

145

During

growth

of the sunflower plant the leaves,

as well as the grow-

ing part of the stem,
are very sensitive to

light.

On sunny

days the leaves on
the growing end of the stem are drawn

somewhat
rosette.

together

so that they

form a
also

They

turn so that the rosette

faces

the sun
rising.

Fig.

176.

Same sunflower
just at

plant photographed

sundown.

when it is The growing

part of

the stem also turns

;

]

toward the sun ;

this

aids in bringing the

upper surfaces of the
leaves to face the sun.

All through the day,
if

the sun continues

to shine, the rosette of leaves follows
it,
-

and at sundown the
rosette faces squarely

Fio.

177.

Same

plant a

little

older

when

tlie

head

does not turn, but the stem and leayes do.

146

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLAN'TS
For a week or more the sunflower
it all

the western horizon.

head

will face the

sun directly and follow

day as

surely as does the rosette of
leaves.

At

length, a little

while before the flowers in
the head blossom, the head
ceases to turn, but the rosette
of leaves

and the stem

also,

to some extent, continue to

turn with the sun.
the
leaves

When
also

become mature
It is

and cease growing, they
cease to turn.

not true
sun-

that the fully opened

flower head turns with the
sun, as
is

comsupI

monly
posed.
Fig.
178. The young head follows the sun even though the leaves are

But

have observed

young

heads

out away.

four to five .^
.

inches in diameter follow the sun all day.

Ihe growmg end of the stem will
J.

TCI
-J!

-m

also
1

n

,,

,

loilow the sun, even

11

it all

the leaves and

ii

1

Fig. 179. Seedllngsunflower at left wtt light from above, at right turned toward
;

the

young flower head are cut away.
with
sunflowers

Experiments

and other seedlings.

The

seedlings of

many

plants are so sensitive to the

BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS TOWARD LIGHT
influence of light that they quickly turn
if is

147

placed near

a

window where
of

there

a one-sided

illumination.
seedlings

The pot shown in
In an hour

Fig.

180 was placed near

a window.

they had turned so that
the cotyledons faced the
light

coming

in

from the

window.
Fig. 180. Sunflower
seedlings

Even when

lighted

Fig, 181.
lings

Same

seed-

from above.

by a window.

the

cotyledons are cut

off,

the

stems will turn toward the
as

light,

shown

in Fig. 182.

Any

of

the

seedlings

which we

have
a onewill

studied, or others, will turn to

one side where there
sided illumination, but

is

some

turn more quickly than others.

The

influences

which light has

on the position

of leaves,

on the

growth of the stem, and on the
symmetrical or one-sided growth
Fig.
182.

The

seedlings turn,

of the branches of a tree, can be

even though the cotyledons are cut away, and stem is
cut in two.

seen and observed in any place

148

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
It will

where plants grow.

be interesting then, when you come in the presence of plants, for you to endeavor stories to read from the plants themselves the varied

which they can
them.

tell of

the influence which light has on

Where

leaves are crowded together,

you

will

often see that each
leaf in the

cluster

takes a definite
place, so that
it

will

be in a good position to get the light.

This position of the
leaf is

not taken of
It is
light,

itself alone.

because

the
it,

acting on
it

causes
this

to take

up

position.

Leaves
called

thus often form
Fig. 183.

Cedar of Lebanon, strong light only from one side of tree (Syria).

what are

pieces of "mosaic," as seen in the Fittonia (Fig. 102) cultivated in green-

houses.

In the woods or groves you will have an opportunity of studying many of these " mosaics," and
will be interesting for
size

it

you

to see

if

there

is

any

dif-

ference in the

of

any part

of

the leaf which

enables

it

better to take a favorable position in the

BEHAVIOR OE PLANTS TOWARD LIGHT
" mosaic."
can study

149

Then on the edge

of the forest or grove

you

many examples

of the effect of light

on the power
plant

unequal growth of the branches of trees and shrubs.

What advantage

to the plant comes from this
?

to turn the leaves so as to face the light

What

food can be formed only in the green leaves in the

Fig. 184.

Spray of leaves of striped maple, showing different
lengths of leafstall^s.

presence of light
plants'

?

What economy

is

there in

the

having broad and thin leaves, instead of having

the same

amount

of tissue in a

rounded green mass

?

Why

do trees on the edge of a

forest, or of a grove,

have more and longer branches on the side away from
other trees than on the side next the forest
clusters
?

In leaf

on branches

why

are

some

of the

leafstalks

much

longer than others (see Fig. 184)?

CHAPTER XXI
BEHAVIOR OF CLIMBING PLANTS

ways of have dijffierent ways
Different

getting

up

to

the light.

Plants

of getting into a position where

Fig. 185.

Coiling stem of morning-glory.

there

is

light.

Trees build

tall,

stout trunks,

which
get

hold their branches and leaves far above other plants.

Shrubs and

tall

herbs build
1.-.0

slender trunks to

behAvioe of climbing plants
above their
smaller
neighbors.

151

Some

other plants

which have comparatively weak stems have found means of getting up where there is light. Such plants
climb.

Their stems cannot hold the plants upright.
other
plants,

They climb on

or

on rocks,

fences, houses, etc.

Climbing by coiled
stems.

A common
is

way for some plants
to climb to coil or

twine

their

stems

round other plants.

The morning-glory,
the climbing bitter-

sweet or

waxwork
and the

{celastrus),

nightshade are
examples.

While

Pia.

186.

Coiling stem of dodder.

these plants are
growing, watch the stems and see

how they

coil.

The young stems

are

more or
is

less erect;

but

the end of the stem

often bent to one side.

You
Notice

may watch the plant in the field, or may be cut and placed in a vessel of now which way the bent ends point.
so

several shoots

water.

In an hour or
pointing in a

look again.

Some
If

of

them

are

different direction.

you look at intervals through

152

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
will see

the day, you

that the stem swings

slowly

around in

circles.

The nightshade swings from right The morning-glory coils the sun."
tion.

to left, or " against in the

same

direcbitter-

Which way does the climbing
?

sweet coil
or "love

How is
?

it

with the " dodder,"

vine "
If

Study other vines that

you

see.

you wind the morning-glory

vine or the bittersweet in the opposite

way

from that in which you find

it

growing,

and fasten
end
coil

it,

which way

will the

young

when

left to itself?

h
rra.
187.

Stem

of

The pea vine, the star cucumber, and some other plants climb by tendrils. The
Climbing by tendrils.
squash, pumpkin, cucumbers,

dodder with
suckers entering the stem of its
victim.

and melons

also

have

tendrils,

but rarely climb,

as they

are usually cultivated where

there

is

no opportunity.

But these

plants are good ones for the study of
tendrils, as

they grasp other plants near

them.
der.

Their tendrils are long and slenBefore they have caught hold of
is
I'lo- iss.

comng

ten-

a support the end

curved to one side

and the tendril swings, somewhat as the stem of the
morning-glory does, until
it

touches some object.

The

BEHAVIOR OF CLIMBING PLANTS
end of the tendril now
not too large.
If

153
if

coils

round the object

it

is

you watch a tendril from day
it

to

day

after

it

has caught hold, you will see that

finally

curls

up

into a beautiful coiled spring.

Consult Fig.

122 to see how

you can imitate
the
action
of

a

tendril with a
strip of

dandelion

stem.
Tendrils often

grasp the edge of
a leaf and coil on

both sides of the
leaf.

The

ten-

drils

of the star
this

cucumber do
frequently.

The

end of the tendril

can take hold

of the flat surface of a leaf

and hold

Fig. 189.

Tendril of star cucumber grasping

edge of leaf of nightshade.

on by tiny suckers
or root-like processes, which
it

sends out to penetrate

the

leaf.

These suckers grow out from the surface of

the coiled tendril

and

strike into the object
its host.

much

as the

suckers of the dodder strike into

154

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
ivy, or

The Japanese
called, climbs

Boston ivy, as
It is often

it is

sometimes

by

tendrils.

used to train on
the ends of

the walls of houses.

Where

the tendrils strike against the hard wall
of the house, they flatten out into little
disks,

which cling very firmly and hold up
clematis, or virgin's bower, climbs

the large and heavy vines.

The
Fig.
190.

in a peculiar
Tendril

way.
midrib

The
coils

petiole, or
,

of Japanese ivy.

ti 01 the leai, acts like a

tendril

and

roiind

an object
a

for support.

Root climbers.

Poison ivy

is

plant which some persons should
avoid.

Others can handle

it

with-

out becoming poisoned.
of the plant

One form

grows

in the shape of

a vine which climbs up the trunks
of tall trees.
It

may

be

known

from other vines in the woods by the shape of its leaves. But especially

can one

tell it in

the woods
Pig.
191. Vine of ampelopsis (American creeper) clambering over a dead tree

by the numerous
which cover the
tree,
ices

climbing roots
side

toward the
in crev-

and which take hold
in the

trunk.

bark and hold the vine up

There

is

a

BEHAVIOR OF CLIMBING PLANTS
shrubby form of poison ivy which does not climb.
should learn to
Fig. 84.

155

One
See

know

the plant by the leaves.

The climbing poison ivy sometimes forms a very
large vine, which reaches to the top of tall trees and

nearly smothers them with

its

dense foliage.

The

English ivy, sometimes trained on the sides of houses,
is

a root climber.

Some

plants climb

by leaning on
too

others for support. to support them-

As they grow upward, being

weak

selves alone, they fall against other plants

and grow

over and between their branches.

Such plants are

sometimes called scramblers, because they scramble over
others.

CHAPTER XXII
THE BEHAVIOR OF FLOWERS

THE BUTTEECUP ELOWEE
Buttercups.
of flowers
is

we read stories on the behavior we must know the parts of the flower. This
Before
to do,

because the different parts of the flower have different

kinds of

work

and therefore behave

differently.

Buttercups, no doubt, are
in the fields

known

to all

who have

been

and woods in the

spring.

The

petals.

The bright yellow
as perhaps

parts which give the

cup shape and the yellow color to the flower are petals,

aU

of

you know.

There

are usually five of these petals.

AH
re•

together they are called the corolla.

The
FlG. 192. Flower of butteroup, 6epai8 below,

sepals.
ji

When you
it
-it

have
see,

moved

t

the pctals you will

]ust

i

Te^:ZVsZ:t
"'""'"•

below where they were seated, a crown
of small scale-like bodies.

Each one
of these,

of these

is

a sepal.

There are usually
calyx.

five

and together they are called the The stamens and
pistils.

If

you look now at the

remaining parts of the flower, you will see that there
156

THE BEHAVIOE OF FLOWERS
are

157

two kinds.

Next

to the petals are a goodly

num-

ber of small stalked bodies called stamens.
cases

If the little

on the ends

of the stalks

have not already opened,

prick one open with a pin.

The

cases crack open of

themselves, and a yellow dust-like powder comes out.

This

is

pollen, each tiny dust-like particle being a pollen

grain.
cases.

The

cases

on the ends of the

stalks are pollen

Right in the center of the flower are a number

of stouter bodies

which have tapering

points.

These

are ca^BA. pistils

What

the parts of the flower do.

If

you look at the

young flower bud, you wUl see that the parts are all wrapped up snugly and covered over by the sepals.

The work

of the

sepals here

is

to protect the other

parts of the flower while they are young.

are bright colored, large, and showy.
parts
of

The petals They are the

the flower which

attract

us.

They

attract bees

and other

insects.

Did

you ever
reach
that
petal.

see the bees visiting the flowers,
?

going from one blossom to another

They
honey

akenei of butter""^^^

down and
is

lap

up the

bit of

in a claw-like pocket at the

bottom of each
cases.

In doing this their legs drag on the pollen

The bees
visit

scatter the pollen grains all around as they

one flower after another.

As they crawl over the
pistils.

flowers-

some

of

the pollen clinging to the hairs on

their legs

is left

on the pointed ends of the

158

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS

Where the seed is formed. If you keep watch of some flowers day after day, you can read the story of where the seed is formed. You. can read it all on the
same day
if

you have plants on which are flowers

of

different ages.

You

should begin with the younger

ones and read up through the older ones.
read that the sepals
fall
;

You

will

fall

away; the

petals wither

and

the stamens wither, but the pistils

grow
is

larger.

After a time they will ripen and you can find the seed.

The

story of just

how

the seed
it

is

formed

a hard one
to

to read,

and
if

I

am

afraid

would be hard for you
it.

understand
to tell
it

I should tell

But I have attempted
I

in Chapter

XXV.

may

tell

you, though,

that unless each part of the flower did
fully,

its

work

faith-

the seed could not be formed.

Behavior op the
The
den.
like
tell

Ptimpkust
find a

Flower

certainly

pumpkin flower, a squash flower in some garThe story of the squash flower is very much that of the pumpkin flower. I do not need to
petals.
If

you cannot
see

you can

you that the flower
I

is

very different from that of
see
that.

the buttercup.
petals
?

You can

Where

are

the

believe

you can read in the flower that
paj:t just inside

the large, yellow, showy, urn-shaped

the

calyx

is

the corolla.

How many

points are there on

THE BEHAVIOR OP FLOWERS
the rim of
tlie

159
say,

urn-shaped corolla

?

Five,

you

and

you have read that each one of these represents a petal, and that The
all

the petals are joined together by their edges.

sepals.

Below the

corolla

you

see five green

pointed leaf-like parts arranged iu the form of a crown.

What does each one of these parts represent ?
The stamens and
pistils.

Now

Fig,

194.

Pumpkin

vine with pistil flower.

look

down

in the

bottom of
a column
is

the flower for the stamens. All the flowers are not alike, you see.
in the center of each.

There

is

On some

of these there

pollen.

These columns in some of the flowers are difEerent from the columns in others. Are the flowers all alike on the
outside
?

No

!

Those with the three blunt projections

on the end

of the

column have a round enlargement on
In
the other flowers
stalk,

the flower stalk.

there

is

no
of

enlargement on the flower
these bears pollen grains.

and the column

So these columns must be

160

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
The columns
in the others

stamens joined together.

form the upper part

of the pistils joined together, while
is

the enlargement in the flower stalk

the lower part

of

the joined pistUs.
pol-

The point on the pistU where the
len lodges

we

call the stigma.

Bees and other insects go from one
flower
to

another.
pollen

How

otherwise

could

the

be taken from the

stamen flower and be placed on the
end of the
Pig. 195. Stamen flower closed.

pistil in

the pistil flower?

So the bees are a great help to the
flower
in

making
If

its

seed,

and the

flower gives the bee honey to pay for
its

labor.

you

can get a pumpkin
in the

autumn, cut
two,
see
cross-

one
wise.

in

what a great number of seeds there are. Can you tell how many
parts
Fig. 196. Stamenflower front cut

You

are

joined in

away, showing
stamens grown
together in center.

compound pistil which finally makes the pumpkin ?
this

Fig. 197. Pistil flower with front cut away.

THE BEHAVIOE OF FLQWEES
The Sunflower
The flower head.

161

We

have already seen how the

sunflower plant behaves toward light.
interested in observing the

We

are

now
blos-

behavior of the flowers.
that the large,

You

should learn,

first of all,

showy

FxG.

198.

Squash Tine with flowers and young squash.

som

is

not a single flower.
It is

It is

made up

of a great

many

flowers.

a " head " of flowers.
in a head.

There are

I am sure you can tell showy ones are on the The most the two kinds apart. edge or margin of the head. They stand out like The rays of the sun so we call them ray flowers.

two kinds of flowers

;

162

THE BEHAVIOE OE PLANTS

most prominent part is like a strap. The other flowers They are shaped somewhat like a are more numerous. Because tube, and have been called tubular flowers.
they form a large disk in the center of the flower head they are also called disk flowers. Each one of the little ray and disk flowers
is

called a floret.

The behavior
florets

of the

in

flowering.

If

you

will read

from

several
heads, or

sunflower
read from

one day by day, you
will learn

an

interest-

ing story.
cut
ofE

You can
and
stem in a

a head

put
Fig. 199.

the

Sunflower head.

vessel of water in the
it

room where you can

see

from day
Just

to day.

It will

behave very well for several days.
to pick the flowers to pieces. at the disk florets.
First, in those

You do not need look now and then
is

next the ray flowers, the pollen
lifted

pushed out from the pollen cases and
It is the

above the

corolla tube, so that the pollen grains can be scattered.

growing

pistil in

each floret which pushes the

pollen out.

Then

in a

few more rings next these and

THE BEHAVIOE OF FLOWEES
nearer the center the same thing happens
;

163

and

so

on

toward the center of the
opening
florets

disk, each

day the ring of
Finally

approaching nearer the center.
its style so

the pistil pushes up

that
style

it
is

stands above the
divided into two

end of the corolla tube.
slender parts which at

The
first

are closed

up

so the pollen

cannot touch the stigma on the inner surface.

Later

Fig.

200.

Heads of fuller's

teasel in diif erent stages of flowering.

the parts curve outward.

When

the head has partly

blossomed you can see a broad ring of disk flowers, next
the rays, with the
tube.
pistils
is

projecting above the corolla

Next there

a broad ring of disk flowers with

the pollen projecting above the corolla tube, and in the
center of the head are disk flowers not yet opened.
If

you observe the flowers

in the garden,

you

will see

that bees and other insects are crawling over them.

164

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
bees drag the pollen from the open florets where
pistil is closed to

The
the

the open

pistils.

Since the pistils

and stamens of each
floret

do not ripen

at the

same time,

the pollen from one
floret

must go to the

pistil of
floret,

another

and cannot
its

get to
is

own. This

a good thing for
plant,
for
it

the

makes the new

life

Fig. 201.

A group of jacks.

in the seed

more vigorous.
cross

This tak-

ing of the pollen from one flower to

another

is

pollination.

If

you

study the behavior of flowers in this
respect,

you

will find that insects visit
different kinds

a great

many

and cross

Fig. 202.

Jack

in UiS

pulpit.

pollinate them.
If

you

find a daisy, golden-rod, aster, or black-ey6d
it

Susan, read

to see

how it compares with the

sunflower.

THE BEHAVIOE OF PLOWEES
The Teasel
The behavior
of

165

the teasel in flowering.
It
is

Do you
to learn

know

the teasel?

worth your while
it

where

grows, that you

may

see its

interesting

way

of flowering.

The

Fig. 203.

Jack out of the two upper ones with pistil flowers, the two lower ones with sta^
his pulpit
:

men flowers.

plant grows in waste

places, along roadsides,

and
is

in

some
Fig. 204.

Flower of skunk cabbage with
front cut away.

places

cultivated as

166

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
The
flowers are in heads.
of several heads,
I

fuller's teasel.

am going to
blos-

show you a photograph

with the
of

soming

the

plants in differ-

ent stages and let

you read the

sto-

ry (see Fig. 200).

Jack-in-thepulpit
flower.

You

are all iain

terested

the
e-

Jack-in-th
pulpit. "jack"
is

The
tall,

and his head
reaches up so
that
it

we can

see

in the pulpit.

If

you examine

them, you will
see that

some
sta-

jacks are covered

below with

men
Fig. 205.

flowers,
does the

Another flower of skunk cabbage.

while othpr lacks

are covered below with pistil flowers.

How

pollen get from one jack to the other (Pigs. 201-203)?

THE BEHAVIOE OF FLOWEES
The skunk cabbage.
pistils are

167

In

this plant the

stamens and
their

both in the same flower.
?

Can you read

story (Figs. 204, 205)

The wind helps

to cross pollinate
is

many

flowers.

In

many

plants no provision

made

for using insects to

carry the pollen.
carries the pollen.

For many

of these plants the

wind

The oak,

corn, wheat, grasses, etc.,

are examples of wind-poUinated flowers.

CHAPTER XXIII
HOW FRUITS ARE FORMED
The
fruit contrasted

with the

seed.

The

fruit

comes

after the flower.
Is the fruit the

As

the fruit ripens, the seed matures.

same as the seed ?

In Fig. 26

is

shown
It

a fruit of the sunflower.
is

It is usually called a seed.

formed from a single flower in the head.

Since there

many flowers in a sunflower head, many fruits. The entire fruit, however,
are

there are also
is

not, strictly
of the
it

speaking, the seed.
seed
is

The seed
it,

is inside.

The wall

so firmly joined to the wall of the pistil that

does not separate from
is

and the meat (embryo plant)

inside.

So we cannot say with accuracy that the

fruit

and seed are the same.^

Note.
flower, if
Its

— The
is

matter of this chapter

is

not particularly concerned
is

with the behavior of plants.

But the

fruit

best studied after the

we wish

to get

study

also closely

any idea of the parts entering into the fruit. connected with the dispersal of seed. For this
is

reason the chapter on fruits

introduced here.

If the teacher prefers,

the matter of the flower, fruit, and of seed dispersal

may

quite as well

be introduced after Chapter X, in connection with a study of the plant

and

its parts.

^ In the gingko tree, and in though sometimes the embryo

cycas, the fruit
is

is

the same as the seed,
fruit.

not formed in the
168

The word
its

"fruit" has a very indefinite significance, as can be seen from

HOW
The
called
a-kene'.

FEUITS AEE FORMED

169

The seed or fruit of the sunflower is an ctrkene' The beggar needles, seeds of the
.

golden-rod, etc., are also akenes.
is difl&cult

In the buttercup

it

for us to say just

what

is

the fruit.

The

collection of seeds in
is

the ripe or old flower
fruit, since

probably a

they are

all

formed from a
part, however,

single
is

flower.

Each

an akene

(Fig. 210)

and

is

gener-

ally called a seed,

though the wall of
a

the seed
pistil.

is

united with the wall of the

An

akene, then,
fruit,

is

dry unopening
a

with

single seed the
is

wall of

which
An akene or Fig. 206. fruit of sunflower with
four embryos in one seed coat, germinating.

joined with the
pistil.

Wall of the

The pOd.
-i

.i

mi
^

IhC pca pod
^
i

i

IS
i

a good example oi one

kmd

of fruit.

It is a capsule fruit
loc-ule.

which has only

one chamber, or

It opens into halves

by

splitting along the

two

edges.

You can
atfig.
°f
207.

see the seeds inside,

and that they are

tached at one point to the wall of the pod.

An

The silkweed

or milkweed has a fruit which

^g.^^.^

general application to widely different structures or combinations.

We

even speak of the fruit of ferns, meaning the spore cases and spores,

where no seeds

at all are formed.

170
is

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS

an example of another kind of pod, which opens only

along one edge.

The morning-glory has a pod, or
with three chambers or

cap-

sule fruit,

locules,
pistil.

each one representing a part of the

Can you name and
other pods
?

describe

How

should you

describe a pod or

capsule fruit

?

Drupes or stone

fruits.

The

cherry, peach,
plum, and other
fleshy fruits of
this

kind are called drupes or stone

fruits.

The outer part
becomes

of the wall of

the
I

pistil

fleshy,

and the inner part hard and
stony, and contains the

meat

,

or seed inside.

The strawberry.

When
it

you next have some
interesting to learn

berries

you

will find

what parts

of the flower

make the

edible portion of the fruit.

Fig. In the An akene209. bur of marigold, the strawberry you can see the tiny "

bootjack."

seeds, each resting in a tiny de-

pression,
Fig. 210. Akene of buttercup,
"

as

if

they were stuck
r-

all

over

the outcr part oi the pulp or soft part oi

T

i

HOW
the strawberry.
substance.

FRUITS ARE FORMED
They
are not covered with
is

171

any

soft

Each seed

a ripened

pistil.

There were
If

many

pistils in

the strawberry flower.

you go into a strawberry patch when the
berries are

ripening,
you can see

how the
fleshy part
Fig. 211. Fruit of pea a pod split open.
:

of

the
the

strawberry
is

formed, by reading
stories

the

from

flower through the
green strawberries
to the ripe ones.

up

You

will see that the part of

the flower to which the
pistils are

joined grows
thicker,

larger
finally

and

and

forms the fleshy

part of the strawberry,
raising the seeds
it

up

as
Fig. 212.

grows bigger.
of

This
Pods of milkweed.

part

a

flower,

to joined,

which the
is

pistils

and usually the other parts are

called the re-cep'ta-cle or torus.

The

fleshy part of

172

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
The strawberry
berry
is

the strawberry, then, is the receptacle.
is

not, strictly speaking, a berry.

A

a fleshy

fruit with several seeds inside, as

the snowberry, gooseberry, grape,

tomato,

etc.

The blackberry.
the

How
?

is it

with

Fig. 213. Fruit cluster of morning-glory.

You can read the story in the same way as you did in the strawberry, when you have a chance. The receptacle
blackberry fruit

becomes larger and longer, and
forms the inside of the blackberry

which we
very juicy part.

eat,

though
seeds?

it

is

not a
are

Where
is

are

the

They

enclosed in a fleshy substance.

This fleshy substance
of the pistil.

around each seed
different it is

the outside

How

from the strawberry!

The raspberry.

Compare the

rasp-

berry fruit with that of the strawberry

and blackberry.
see
if

Read the story and you can tell what part of the flower makes the fruit. You should go
to a raspberry patch, or

Fig. 214. Single pod with three locules of morning-glory.

have some stems with

ripe

raspberries and,

if

possible, flowers

on them.
In

The raspberry and
berries.

blackberry are not, strictly speaking,

They are

collections

of tiny stone fruits.

the flowers the pistils are separate, but as the fruit

HOW
of little drupes.

FRUITS ARE FORMED

173

forms, the outer fleshy parts unite to form a collection

The apple
for

is

an interesting

fruit.

It

would be

difficult

you to read the

entire story, because older students

are not sure that they
just

know

what

parts are united in

the apple fruit.
crosswise.
inside.

Cut an apple
see the seeds

You

How many

chambers,
?

or locules, are there for seeds

What
Fig.
215.

does each one of tJiese
?

locules represent
Drupe or stone
of peach.
fruit

I shall not

ask you what the fleshy part
of the apple represents, for

we

are not sure that

we know.

It

was once thought
fleshy.

to be

the calyx

grown very thick and

You

see at the

small end of the apple the dried ends of the sepals.

But perhaps these sepals
only rested on the edge of

the receptacle which
the
is

is

joined to the outer part of

compound
so,

pistil.

If this

then the

receptacle
Fig. 216.

grows very large and fleshy
and forms the fleshy part of
the apple.

Fruit of strawberry and raspberry.

This

is

most

likely.

Compare the
is

receptacle

of the rose flower.

The

rose flower

a near relative

174

THE BEHAVIOE OF PLANTS
and we should expect the flowers
though not entirely
If
so.

of the apple flower,

to be

somewhat

alike,

An apple
compare

fruit is
it

sometimes called a pome.
very

you

will

with the true berries, like the snowberry, gooseberry,

etc.,

you

will see that

it is

much

like a berry.
fruits of

The squash, pumpkin, cucumber, and other
this
is

kind form what

is

called a pepo.

The outer

part

supposed to be formed from the receptacle of the
is

flower which here

united with the three parts of

the

compound

pistil.

You

will

remember that

in the

flower (Fig. 194) the calyx and corolla were seated on

the end of the young pumpkin, which suggests that
the
receptacle

here

encloses

and

is

joined

to

the

pistil.

How many
fruits.

chambers, or locules, are there in

the

pumpkin?
The
fruit of the

Acorn
us
all.

oaks

is

interesting to
in

Every one knows the acorns and the cups
rest.

which they

Well, the cup

is

a very singular part

of the fruit.

It

perhaps represents a crown of tiny

leaves around the base of the

young

flower.

As

the

acorn was forming, these tiny leaves grew larger and

were

all

joined closely together, so that they formed a

cup which partly enclosed the acorn (see Fig. 245).
In the hazelnut, chestnut,

and beechnut a similar

crown

of

leaves {inrvo-lu'cre) around the base of the

flower forms the husk or bur in which the nuts are
enclosed,

and from which they are shelled when

ripe.

HOW
There are
to study.

FRUITS ARE FORMED

175

many other fruits which
many
cases

will be interesting

Some
fruit
if

of these are treated of in the following
it is difficult

chapter, since in

to distinguish

between a
should see
the plant,

and a

seed.
tell

In the study of fruits you
of to
of

what use they are and how these fruits may be the means

you can

helping the plants to scatter their seeds.

Note
different

In the walnut, butternut, and hickory nut the

fi-uit

is

from that

of

the

hazehiuts,

oaks,

etc.

The "hull"

or

" shuck " probably consists partly of calyx and partly of involucral
bracts consolidated, but very likely there
involucre.

The walnut and butternut

are

is more of calyx than more ofteii called drupes is

of

or

stone fruits, but the fleshy part of the fruit

evidently not of the

same origin as in the case plum, and others.

of the true drupes, like the cherry, peach,

'

CHAPTER XXIV
HOW PLANTS SCATTER THEIR SEED
The touch-me-not.
of a " toiich-me-not
?

Did you ever see or handle a pod

The plant

is

sometimes known
as garden balsam.
It
is

well worth
it

while to grow
in

any flower gar-

den.

The

flowers

are pretty, but the

pods are stiU more
interesting.

When

you touch them, or
throw them on the
floor

or against

the wall, they burst suddenly and scatter their
seeds
Fig. 217.

all

around.

Spray of leaves and flowers and fruit of jewel weed, or wild Impatiens.

The wild Impatiens, or jewel

weed, has smaller pods, which burst in the same way.

Find some of the plants in a garden during the autumn
176

HOW PLANTS

SCATTER THEIE SEED

177

and try the pods, or look for the wild Impatiens, or
jewel weed, along streams and in damp, shady places.

The witch
beautifiil

hazel.

The witch hazel

is

known by

its

yellow flowers with slender
late in

curled petals,

which come out
fallen.

autumn, after the leaves have

At

the same time the fruit pods are matured
of

from flowers

the previous year.

On dry
when
ripe,

days,
is

the fruit

one can hear
snapping of

the

the pods as they

burst,

and the
thrown
Fig.

seeds are

with force several
feet

away.

218.

Pods which

Seeds of milkweed ready to scatter from the pods.

burst and scatter their seeds are called explosive fruits.

Other examples are to be found in the vetch, locust,
violet, oxalis, etc.

The milkweed

or silkweed.

The milkweed

is

known

by its peculiar flowers and the abundance of white milky substance which flows from wounds in the plant, and
gives a disagreeable sticky feeling to the hands
it

when

comes

in contact with them.

When

the flowers go,

a few

little

boat-shaped pods are seen on the flower

!

!

178
stalk.

THE BEHAVIOK OF PLANTS
These grow larger and larger.

When

they are
is

ripe the pods split open.

A

great mass of flat seeds

crowded out by the pushing of great tufts of white They silky threads attached to one end of each seed.
are
so light

and feathery that the wind

lifts

them

easily and sometimes bears them miles away. Did you ever see these pods bursting and emptying

out the
before
it

great

white feathery cloud
opened.
Split
it

?

Take a pod
Separate

has

open and see how
in
it.

beautifully the seeds are packed

away

some

of the seeds to see the soft, silky tuft of hairs

Blow the seeds into the air to see how away on the "wings of the wind." The dandelion. The dandelion is so common that few persons admire the really beautiful flower. They
on the end.
easHy they
float

would rather get
unwelcome.

rid

of

it.

If the
it

dandelion would

only grow in out-of-the-way places,

would not be

so

But

it

is

an intruder.

You

dig

the

plants, root and branch, out of your yard, and in a few years they are there again, or new ones, rather. It makes a great many seeds. But how beautifully

they

saO.

through the

air like tiny balloons
all
is

Did you ever try to blow
with one long whiff
one stood.
?

the seeds a

oflE

the head

There

How

they go sailing

mark away
is

left

where each
a

!

Watch them
like

Some

are coming

down

to the

ground

man

clinging to a parachute.

The seed

the heaviest part

HOW PLANTS
and
is

SCATTEE THEIE SEED

179
is

below.

On

the end of the long stalk above

the crown of soft white hairs which forms the

float.

Down, down, the seed slowly

conies

and soon

is

ready

Fig.

219.

Dandelion seeds.

to wriggle its

way

into the ground.

Here

it

germi-

nates and

makes a new dandelion in the lawn. The leaves form a deep-green rosette resting on the grass. The flower stem comes up, and the flower head

FiG. 220.

Dandelion fruit in shade (after Macniillan).

HOW PLANTS

SCATTEE THEIE SEED
,

181

opens, showing a beautiful cluster of yellow flowers.

This head closes at night and opens in the day, closes

again at night and opens

with the day, and so on,
unless the day
one,
lions
is

a dark

when

all

the dande-

may remain closed.
the head

By and by
stops opening.

We
die.

can

see the tips of the flowers.

They wither and
gins to appear.
hairs

A

white cottony mass beIts silky

spread apart, the

head opens again, and
the

crown

of

narrow

leaves (the involucre) re-

curves and gives
for the spreading

room
crown
the
Fig. 221.

on the
A seeds.

tips
T^'U
'

of
f

all

Dandelion aower and
left, ripe

fruit.

-LniS

lOrmS

open at

right, old flowers closed

Flower and stems

a

elongating at

seed raised up higher

great white ball on the

-l -^dy to scatter (after Miyake).
seeds are

end of the stem.

The

now

in a position

where the wind

easily catches

them.
the lawn
is

Did you ever notice that

wl;iere

mowed
see

many

of the

dandelions have such short stems that
is

the flower head

below the lawn mower

?

Then

182

THE BEHAVIOR OF PLANTS
these

how

same short stems

will

grow much longer

just as the seeds are ready to be scattered, so that they

are lifted above the grass

where the wind may catch

hold of them easily.

Put a stake by some flowers and

measure the stems.

while the seeds are ripening.

Then measure them every day Along the roadsides or
stems are often longer

in undisturbed places the flower

than those on the lawn.
as the seeds ripen
?

Do

these long stems lengthen

The wild
old fields

lettuce and prickly lettuce, so

common

in

and along the roadsides, have seeds very
bower, or clematis.
is

much
The
in the

like those of the dandelion.

virgin's

The

clematis, or

virgin's

bower,

quite as

attractive in appearance

autumn as in the summer when it is in flower. The great masses of foliage and vines clambering over fences and shrubs, and often hiding them entirely, show numerous white puffs of feathery seeds where
the flower once was.

Each

of

the seeds

is

like

an

arrow-headed

plume.
to

some

of

them
off

Blow or scatter the wind and see them
in

scudding
Fig. 222.

to

the ground
ci Some i

curious

spiral courses.
(seed) of elm,

Fruit a

j WiDged
ttt-

sccds.

j

secds have

i

wmg-

samara.

like expansions
seeds.

on the side and are called

winged

They, too, are carried by the wind, but

they are not quite so buoyant as the seeds of the

HOW PLANTS
It is

SCATTER THEIE SEED
The elm
seed has

183

milkweed and dandelion.
sometimes called
the elm."

two wings. a samara, which means " seed of
pines
also

The maples and
seeds.

have winged
other plants

Do you know any
?

which have winged seeds
The bur marigold.

The bur marigold, " beggar needles " or sometimes called
" devil's bootjack,"
is

a very

common

Winged fruit of maple, two seeds.

weed with yellow flower heads. The sBcds are also in a head, and the cluster
bristles all over

with the barbed awns.
as
in

" Bootjack "
the shape
is

is

not a bad

concerned.

name for the seed, so far At least a boy brought up
so.

the country,

who used
wooden

to pull ofE his boots at night

with the old

bootjack, thinks

When

tramping through the
if

fields,

or

sometimes in the garden,

you brush

against one of these plants, the
pierce

awns

will

your clothing immediately.

The

barbs hold on tight, and soon there

may
"^

be hundreds of these seeds clinging to you. ° " The cocklebur, burdock, stick-tights, etc.

Fig. 224. Seed of i>or marigold, " bootjack."

not the only seed or fruit ready to " catch on " for a " free ride."

The bur marigold
also

is

There

are

cocklebur, burdock, stick-tight,
it

and "whatand

not," and
either.

does not help matters to " crack behind,"
until they are pulled
off,

They hold on

184

THE BEHAVIOE OF PLANTS

then they leave in the cloth countless tiny hooks, which
are even harder to remove.

you wish to know more about these " dead-beats who ride all over the country and never pay a cent of
If

"

fare,

go out for a tramp in the autumn in old neglected
fields or in

low waste ground.

You can
Examine

carry some

home

for

study.

them

to see the different kinds of seeds,

and how the barbs, hooks, and other holdfasts are formed.

What
?

animals do you

think would be of service to the plant in
Fig.
Fruit of cocklebur
223.

dispersing such seeds
also, to visit

You may

wish,

with hooked appendages.

the same places in

summer

to see the plants in flower.

Have you
float

seen any other seeds than these described
?

here which have means for dispersal

Do Do

seeds ever
this

on the water and become scattered in
is it

way ?
of

How
rivers,

with the cocoanut palm?

seeds

grasses or weeds float in the water of lakes, ponds,

and small streams

?

Paet IY

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS

CHAPTER XXV
LIFE STORY OF

THE SWEET PEA

The
observe

life

story of the sweet pea can be easily read
to

from the plant by any one who wishes
it.

grow

it,

and

The story of the garden pea is similar, and some of you may wish to read it. But the sweet pea has prettier flowers. It can be grown in the garden, or in the plant house, or in the window garden
where you can
The seedling
see
it

every day.

stage.

The

seeds of the sweet pea are

round, hard, dark grayish brown objects (see Fig. 211).

We

plant

them

in the moist

soil.

They take water
This moisture
life

from the

soil,

swell up, and become soft.
soil start

and the warmth in the
the seed into action.
its

the dormant

in

It

" awakens," as

long sleep.

In a few days, or a

we say, from week or so, the
The
leaves are
full

young plant

rises

through the
185

soil.

now

tiny, but as the

stem grows and the light has

186

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS

play on the small leaves they stretch out so that a
greater surface

may

receive light, for light

is

good

for

the leaf and plant.

As the stem gets longer, the leaves
period.
If there are

higher up are better formed and more fully developed.

The growth and work

no

sticks

or objects for the pea

vine to take hold
will

of, it
it

show you that needs some means
support.
lie

of

win soon But if you put an upright
It

prostrate.

stick within its reach,

or train some cord or

string near
tendrils

by, the
leaf will
coil

on the

stretch out and
round
it.

In this way

the vine can climb up

where
Fig, 226.

there

is

more

Sweet pea coming up.

light

and

air.

The
is

stem branches, and at length a
formed.

tall

and bushy plant
lifting

There

is

a

much

greater leaf surface.

While the plant has been growing, and
water and food from the
soil

up
of

by the combined work

the roots and leaves and stem, the green leaves have

been doing another kind of work, for which

we know

LIFE STORY OF THE SWEET PEA
they need the help of sunlight.
starch.

187

They have been making
digested and changes to

At night

the starch

is

sugar.
is

It flows to all parts of the plant

where growth
is

taking place and
that
if

new

plant

substance

wanted.

We know
all

the pea vine were grown in the dark,

the plant subit

stance

would

have
growth

to

use in would be

that which was al-

ready in the seed.

The stem would be for a time long
and spindling, the leaves
small
ish,

would

be

and yellowand the frameof the plant
soft.

work

would be

It

Fio.

227.

Sweet-pea Tines needing support.

would soon

die.

But

in the light the leaves are green.

We know
the green

that the carbon dioxid of the air gets into
leaf.

The

light then helps the leaf to

make

the starch from which most of the

new

plant substance

comes.

Flowering time.

The plant has now formed a strong
its

working system, and working
leaves.

numerous branches bear many
prepared to flower.
Since the

It is

'^^

188

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS

flowers do another sort of

work than make

food, there

must be a good force

of

working leaves to supply the

Fig. 228.

Sweet-pea vine trained to support.

food and energy needed in flowering.
first,

These appear

next come the flower heads, and later the clusters
opening out
first.

of flowers, the older ones

LIFE STOEY OF THE SWEET PEA

189

The Flower
The
petals.

The flower

of the sweet pea

is

beautiful

in color
Its

and form.
is

form
that

peculit

iar;

is,

is

not so regular in

shape as the flower

Some one has thought
of the lily.

the shape

of

the

flower of the pea,

and of

its

cousins

or relations, to be
like that of a butterfly.

The most

attractive parts of

the flower of the

pea are the petals,
already
If

know what
select

petals are.

you do not,

just look at the

pea flower,

the

bright-

colored parts which are thin and

broad.

These are the

petals.

You

see they are of
of'

different
Fig. 229.

shapes, instead'

having- the
Sweet-pea flowers

same shape as

in

the

lily

or

and young pods.

190
buttercup.

LIEE STORIES OF PLANTS
This
is

what gives the

peculiar form

to.

the pea flower.

Now
of the

all

these parts, or the different kinds of petals
I should not

pea flower, have received names.
if,

be surprised

after studying their shapes carefully

and their position in the flower, you could name them
yourself, especially
if

you

tried to think of

things

with which
petals

you are familiar and
which these
resemble.

Now,
large

first,

the

one,
is

held up

above,

the tanner.

The two reaching
out on the sides are
FlQ. 230.

Petals of sweet pea.

wings.

Now

think

hard for the two below, folded up together.
ever

Did you

make

or sail a boat

?

What

does the boat have on
?

the underside that cuts through the water

Banner, wings,

heel,

— these
we

The

keel.

are the petals of the pea

flower and all together

call

them the

corolla.

Now remove the

petals

from the

flower.

Place them
parts

out in position and

draw the form.

The two
?

which form the keel are joined

in the middle.

Is that

the case with the keel in the garden pea

LIFE STORY OP THE SWEET PEA
The calyx.
there

191
;

The

petals are

removed from the flower

what remains?
is

Just below where they were jomed

a

little

crown

of five pointed green leaf -like

bodies.

They

are very different in form from the real

pea leaves, but like them are green.
Together they

These are

sepals.

make

the

calyx.

In the bud they

covered and protected the other parts of the flower.

same number as the yet they are very different in form and color.
There are
five sepals, the

petals,

The stamens and

pistil.

There are

now remaining the

parts of the flower around

which the keel was
Count them.
ten
thread-like

folded.

There are
bodies,

surrounding a tiny boat-

shaped body. The thread^
•'

Fig. 231.

like bodies are the stamens.

Flower of sweet pea ^'tt petals removed.

Each one has an enlargement
is

at the curved end.

It

a

little

case containing the powder-like substance,
It
is

called pollen.

a pollen

case.

See
calyx.

if

all

the
is.

stamens are separate down

to the

One

These The nine others are joined toward the base. The other one is a brothernine form one hroiherhood. hood all by itself. The pistil is flat, like a thin boat,

and

it

is

hairy.

It is almost too tiny in the fresh

flower for us to study.
flower.

"We will take one in an older

?^
192

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS
old flower.

The

As the
die.
pistil.

flower gets old the petals and

stamens wither and
collapse around the

They

either fall

away

or

If the flower

has done the

work

was intended, the pistil does not die. It grows longer and broader and thicker, until we see When it has grown a that it is becoming a pea pod. little, split the young pod open into
for

which

it

halves, the

same way that you have
Attached

seen peas or beans shelled.

to one edge of the inside of the little

pod you will see tiny roundish bodies,
in the position in

which you

find the

peas or seeds in the older pods.

The

pod

is

a sort of

box which contains
are cases

the seeds.
in

The tiny bodies

which the embryos are formed. They may be called embryo cases Fig. 232. Fruit of then. The case and embryo together sweet pea. make the seed. The pistil, or seed box, contains embryo cases in which seeds are formed.

How
seed
is

the seed

is

formed.

You cannot

see

how

the

formed.

This part of the story has been found

out by those
microscope.

who are accustomed to use a powerful They cut up the growing embryo case
and search
is
is

(ovule) into very thin layers

in these with a

microscope to see the work that

done here.
formed.

Thus

we

read the story of

how

the seed

LIFE STOEY OF THE SWEET PEA
In the
in the egg.
first

193
substance

place there

is

a royal bit of

life

very young embryo case,

known

as the

germ or

When the pollen
it falls

is

scattered

from the pollen cases

some of

on the end of the
It

pistil.

The

pollen grain
fine as

then starts to grow.
a spider's
the
pistil,

forms a slender tube as

silk.

This pollen tube grows

down through
case.

and one enters each embryo

In each

pollen tube there are
called sperms.

two

bits of royal life substance,

One sperm escapes from the pollen tube when it has entered the young embryo case and unites with the The union of these two hits of royal life subgerm. stance, the sperm and germ; gives a new life to the germ and a new impetus for growth to the embryo case. The new germ grows to form the embryo plant in the seed,
while the

new growth
coat.
life

makes the seed

of the embryo case around it The pea seed is then formed.

This completes the

story of the pea.

CHAPTER XXVI
LIFE STORY OF

THE OAK

The white oak.
begin to
fall,

In the autumn, when the leaves
fall,

the acorns

too,

from the oaks.

They

nestle in the grass or roll
ditch, or strike

down
be.

into the furrow or

on the

leaf floor of the forest, according

to

where the tree happens to
the

The

rains beat on
of the

soil,

and some

acorns become partly buried
in the ground.

Some

are

eaten by insects, others are
carried

away by

squirrels

and other animals.
are left to grow.

Some
in our

As we have seen
Fig.
233.

study of the germination of*
Wliite oak in autumn.

the acorn, the root and stem
parts of the end.

embryo back out

of the shell at the pointed

The great

fleshy cotyledons

remain

inside.

The

root pushes its

way further down into the ground. The young stem grows out from between the cotyledon
stalks.

This often begins in the autumn.

It continues

in the spring

among

those seedlings which survive the
194

LIFE STOEY OF THE OAK
cold of the winter.

195

Or,

if

the acorn did not germinate

in the autumn,

it

may

in the spring.

During the

first

few years the tiny

oak makes

little

growth.
leaves

A

few
It is
Fia.
234,

on a slender
Germinatiug acorn of white oak.

stem appear.

not high enough to
be seen above the grass.
start,

Of the many which

but few rise up to saplings.
It gets

Many, many years
and each year a

the oak grows.
It is

a foot or so higher each year.

making

root, trunk, branches,

Fig. 23S.

Oak

trees getting a start.

iPliotograplieU in winter.)

196
greater

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS

number

of

leaves.

The

leaves

plant substance for the

make new and

the
con-

tinued growth.

The bark on the trunk is smooth at As the sapling gets older the first.
bark begins to crack open in long and
irregular fissures,

making the gray bark
.V

more
nent.

promiIf you

should start when you are very young to
read the
life

of

an oak tree,
from
its

begin-

ning as an acorn, I am afraid you
would never be able
read
the
the
to

whole

story.

By

time oak trees

are very old, they have

Fig. 236. How old was tlie tree from which
this

many more years than we do. So how shall we read the life
lived

wood was taken ?

story of the oak

?

Eead
from
-,

it

in

a large
to

number
.

of
^

trees,

fig. 237.

soarietoaii,

young ones

middle-aged

T

-n

spray of leaves and

ones,

and

stamen dusters.

LIFE STOEY OF THE
very old oaks.
If

OAK

197

you happen to find an oak tree which has been cut down, you know you can tell its age within a few years by counting the annual rings.

During the
so

first

few
in

years of the seedling,
little

growth
took
that

diameter

place

each

year

the

rings are not well
marked.

The oak
is

flower.

It

many

years before

the oak comes
flower.

to
it

Not
the

until

has
FIG. 238.

become quite a
are
flowcrs
in

Spray of leaves

tf^e
^een.

:;;t,rTirerZii
above, stamen flowers in long clusters.

They appear

early
leaves

spring, before

show themselves.
, T
.

Have
Fig.
239.

you

seen the long,
«

slender,
1

stamen flower
of red oak.

Fjg. 240. Pistn flower of red oak.

graceful clusters hanging on the

branches of the middle-aged or old oak in the spring,

when

the limbs are yet bare

?

Gather some of these

and place them on paper overnight.

Next morning

198

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS

there will probably be piles of a fine yellowish powder.

"What

is

this?
it

Pollen

dust,

you

say.

Yes.

Then

where does

come from?

From

the pollen cases.

Then

these tresses, called catkins, are flower clusters.

But there are no
pistils here.

These

flowers, then, are

the stamen flowers.

Where
til

are the pis?

flowers

Look

above the stamen
flowers for little

urn-shaped bodies,

one or two or three
together.

They
in

stand upright, not

hanging down
Fig. 241,

Spray of wliite-oak leaves and

fruit.

catkins.

The

fruit.

After the leaves come and the pollen has
fall.

been scattered, the stamen flowers, or catkins,

But
it

if

everything has gone well with the

pistil flower
it

begins to grow, because

new

life

has been put into

by the sperm from the pollen tube joining with the

germ
pod.

in the

embryo

case.

All through the

summer

it

grows slowly.
snugly in their

It does

not ripen so soon as the pea
are

In the autumn there
little

the
is

acorns,

seated

cups.

This

the fruit.

The

LIFE STOEY OF THE
acorn ripens
Its life

OAK

199
die.

and

falls

;

but the tree does not
it

goes on for years, and

bears

many

other

crops of acorns.

We
cups,

love the oak.

We

think of

it

as a strong

and

sturdy tree.

We

like to play with the

acorns and

and sometimes to eat the
inside,

meat

especially

that

of

the white oak, after the acorn

has been roasted in the hot
ashes of a
fire.

We

like to rest

under the shade
of its branches

and
its

to climb to

top

when

the branches
are near the
ground.

The white
Fig-. 242.

Leaves and fruit of
scarlet oak.

oak forms
acorns in
season.

its

one

The red oak and the
scarlet oaks apart

scarlet

oak take two
tell

seasons to form their acorns.

Can you

the red

and the

by the shape of their leaves ? Can you tell the white oak from both the red and the scarlet oaks by the shape of the leaves and the

200

LIFE STOEIES OF PLANTS
?

character of the bark
in their cups,

If

you were given three acorns

one of the red oak, one of the scarlet oak, and one of the white oak, could you tell them apart and you know the acorn of the then name them ? Do
" moss-cup," or " overis it

cup," oak?

Why
(See

called

by these

names?
Fig. 246.)

The winter
of the oak.

condition
falling

The

of the leaves from trees

and shrubs on the approach of winter
constant habit.
is

a

We

are

accustomed, perhaps, to
look upon
it

merely as
of

one of the signs
autumn.
It is

always

interesting to watch the leaves
falling

from the

tree

and

to of

observe
Fig. 243.

how
aids

the
in

movement
freeing

Leaf of red oak.

the air

them

from the limb.

A

gust of wind knocks off troops of
field or rolls

them, and sends them scurrying over the

them
in the

in great drifts.
this

Did you ever think what

shedding of the leaves
?

autumn means

to the leaf and to the tree

It is
is

the death of the leaf.

But we know that the

tree

LIFE STOEY OF THE

OAK
new

201
leaves

not dead, for with the on-coming of spring

appear as the warmth of the season

moves the
again.

life

into greater activity

The
Fig. 244.

leaf is only

tree for
Fruit of scarlet oak.

an organ of the summer work, to make

starch food, to dispose of the great currents of water that are taken up

by the

roots,

and to do other work

in the preparation of foods

and in

getting rid of waste matter.

When
in
is

the

leaf

is

cast

the

autumn, the tree
dropping
Fig. 245.

only
for

a

member

Fruit of red oak.

which
the period of winter rest

it

has no use during

Some

one

may
its

ask

why

the tree does not

keep

leaves during the winter

and save the growing of new ones
in the spring.
It

would be

fatal

to

most

of the broad-leaved trees

to keep their green leaves

through
the
Fig. 246. Fruit of over-cup oak or moss-covered oak.

the

winter.

We know

that

leaves give off quantities of water

from the
is

During the winter, while the ground frozen or cold, the roots can take up very little
tree.

water, not nearly so

much

as the leaves can give

off.

202

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS
tree has thus acquired a
its

The

remarkably good habit in

laying aside

leaves during the winter,

when they

would be
vice,

of little ser-

and would even
its life if

endanger

they

were retained.

Some trees keep
green
leaves

their

through
pines,

the winter.

The

spruces, cedars, and
FiG. 247. " Needle " leaves anfl stameu
flowers of pitch pine.

other

evergreens
is it

do.

Why
?

not danger-

ous for

them

to do so

The
and

leaves of the pines, spruces,

and

cedars

are

small

needle-like, or

awl shaped,
trees

with a thick, hard covering,
so
lose

that these

do not

water so rapidly as the

broad-leaved trees do.
too, a

Then,

change takes place in

the condition and

work

of the

leaves of such evergreens, so

that they lose less water in
the winter than

Fig. 248.

Leaves of American yew,
evergreen.

during the

summer.

Some

of the broad-leaved trees

and shrubs are

also evergreen

and retain their leaves during the winter.

LIFE STOEY OF THE OAK
Like
tlie

203

pines and spruces, they cast a crop of leaves

after it has

been on the tree for two or more years, a
year.

new crop being grown each
of

The

live oak, the

rhododendrons, and the mountain laurel are examples
broad-leaved evergreen trees and shrubs.

These

leaves,

though they are broad, are thick and have a
off so

hard covering, so that they do not give
water in
would.
the

much
leaves

winter

as

thinner

and

softer

CHAPTER XXVII
LIFE STORY OF FERNS

The fern

plant.

There are no plants which mean

more

to us in our

home

life

than ferns.
loved.

There are no

plants which are

more generally
is

The
felt.

refining

influence of their presence

constantly

Their

graceful forms, the beautiful shapes of their leaves, and

the restful green of their abundant foliage interest us

and
only

satisfy us

whenever we
easily
!

see them.

If

we

could

get the

maidenhair to grow in our yards as
as

abundantly and

the

dandelion does,
of us
if

how

charming

it

would be

Many

would

willingly

part with some of the dandelions

we

could have the

maidenhair or Christmas fern in their place.

As we found on page 63
most

(see Fig. 93), the

stems of

of our native ferns are either

very short, as in

the shield fern, or they are underground stems, as in the bracken fern or sensitive fern.
at the north, the

In

tlie

polypod,
grass,

stem runs under the leaves or
found in some parts of
Tree ferns with
tall

while one in the south runs on the surface of rocks.

The climbing
state,

fern

is

New York

but

it is

rare.

trunks, and
forest trees,

other tropical ferns which

grow high up on
204

may

be seen in some large greenhouses.

LIFE STOEY OF FEENS
Fruit dots, spore cases, and spores of ferns.
If

205

you

take a polypod fern or a Christmas fern (some of the " shield " ferns in the greenhouse will do) and look on
the underside of the leaves, you will perhaps see

them

Fig. 249.

Bank

of ferns (after Maomillan).

covered with

little

dark brown

spots.
off

Some

people
leaf,

take these for

bugs, and scrape them
!

the fern

for fear they will hurt the fern

But you can teach

them

better than that.

206

LIFE STORIES OF PLA2TTS

the brown Pick a leaf which has these on it, when Place it on a piece of white paper in dots look shiny. In a few minutes or an hour you may a dry room.
bodies on the perhaps see a sprinkling of tiny dust-like with your hand. white paper. You can brush them off they ? They are what we call spores. There

What

are

is

a hard

brown

wall,

and

in-

side a bit of living fern sub-

stance.

These spores come out

of a great

many

spore cases
in

which are packed together
the fruit dots.

So these dark
being bugs
to plants,

bodies on the underside of the
leaf,

instead

of

which are harmful

are fruit dots with spore cases

and spores
Fig. 250.

in them.

Christmas fern.

If the fern plant is

making

so

many
off,

of these tiny spores, each containing a little

bit of living fern substance,

we would

better not scrape

them

must be for some good purpose in If you examine a bracken fern, the life of the fern. maidenhair fern, and some other kinds, you will find that the fruit dots are of different shapes, and that some
for they
of

them

are under a flap at the edge of the leaf.

Does the fern plant have flowers?

The

fern plant

does not have flowers as the flowering plants do.

Nor

LIFE STOEY OF FERNS
does the fern plant have seeds.
to

207

It will be interesting

know, then, how new fern plants are formed.

How new

fern plants are formed.

We

have already

FiGr. 251.

Little spleenwort fern.

learned that most ferns bear " fruit dots " or lines on the underside of certain leaves.

We

also

know

that

many
are

tiny spores are in the rounded spore cases which
fruit

packed together to form the

dots.

When

208

LIFE STORIES OE PLANTS some
of

these spores are ripe and have been scattered,

them

fall in

damp

places on the ground, or

on a rotting

log in the woods.

Here

this tiny bit of

living fern substance begins to grow,

and the living matter

inside the hard

brown

coat pushes its
;

way

out through
it

a split in the wall

in a few weeks

has grown into a tiny heart-shaped
of plant tissue

bit

no bigger round than a
This

radish seed, or a small pea, and as thin
Fig. 252. dots of

"Fruit" the common

and delicate as
little object,

fine tissue paper.

shoWU

polypody fern.

jprothalUum

r lb% is Sijern (pro-thal'li-^m). On
.

m

-ri-

Jjig.

nr i

the underside are numbers of rootlets, like

root hairs,

and two kinds
little

of

tiny pockets.

This

pro-

thallium

now

gives

birth to the

embryo fern

plant.

How
starts.

the embryo of the fern plant

The germ

cell is in

one of
deep

the

large

pockets near the

notch in the prothallium, and the

sperms are in the round pockets.

One
the

of

the

sperms

swims

Fia. 253. "Fruit "dots of the maidenhair fern.

into

germ pocket, unites with the germ, and then the germ grows into the embryo fern plant.

LIFE STORY OF FERNS

209

The fern prothallium and embryo compared to a seed. The fern prothallium, with the young embryo fern
attached, might be com-

pared to a seed of one of
the higher plants, where the embryo
is

surrounded

by a food
corn.

tissue

known as
is

the endosperm, as in the
This endosperm

in fact a prothallium of
the higher plant.
FiGr. 254.

In the
as in

Prothallium of fern, bearing the

corn seed
Fig. 44.

it is

shown
of

germ and sperm pockets. This is a view from the underside, and shews the rootlets also.

Some

it is still

left inside

the embryo case.

and acorn

it

is

But in the pea, bean, all used up as food by
which the prothallium
differs
is

the embryo and stored in the cotyledons.

The only way

in

with the embryo of the fern
fact that the prothallium

from

the seed of the corn or bean
is

in the

green (with

chlorophyll), that

it

has been shed from

the spore case, and has been developed
as

an independent individual.

If the
Fig. 255. fern still attached to the prothallium.

fern prothallium were not green, but

Embryo

were wrapped around the embryo and still in the spore case, it would be a seed

When

the

210

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS
to burst out of
soil

young embryo fern grows large enough,
the prothallium,

when

the root strikes into the
rises

and
in

the cotyledon or

first leaf

upward, as shown
it is

Fig. 255,

doing precisely

the same thing that a seed

does

when

it

germinates,
lifts its

strikes root,

and

leaves
light.

and stem upward to the The generations

of the fern.

The

life

story

of

the

fern

reveals to us two generations,

the prothallium and the fern
plant.

They can

live inde-

pendent of each other.

Each

one can take water and food

from the
Fig. 256. The walking fern, taking steps down a hillside.

soil.

With
food.

the leaf-

green each one can

make
The

its

own

starch

pro-

thallium starts from the spore on the fern plant, and
the fern plant starts from the

germ

in the prothalliimi.

The two generations
other, as
it

therefore

alternate

with each

were.

In the corn, the bean, and other
the prothallium

plants of this kind there seems to be only one generation.

This

is

because one part of

it,

generation,

is

packed away and hidden in the embryo
is

case as endosperm, while the other part

hidden in

the pollen and pollen tube.

Most

plants, then, have

LIFE STOEY OF FERNS

211

two generations in their lives. It is only in the ferns, however, and their near relatives that the two genera-

FiG. 257.

The bracken fern

in

company with the

" sturdy " oalc

(after Macmillan).

tions can exist independently.

In the flowering plants
dependent, and hidden

the prothallium generation

is

away

in

the embryo

case.

CHAPTER XXVIII
THE LIFE STORY OF THE MOSS
Those who live near the Mossy banks and trees. chance to go to the woods or woods, or who have a mountains in summer, delight in finding a carpet of The moss on the ground or on some shady bank.
slender,

short

'

stems covered

with delicate leaves make a
velvety cushion of green.

We

know
in the

that these tiay plants

love the cool shade, for, except
cold arctic or
alpine

regions,

we
The

find

them grow-

ing freely only in or near the

woods.
in

tree trunks, too,

moist, cool, shady places

are often covered with moss.

There are sometimes tiny
Fj(;. 258.

tufts

Mosfi-noverecl trunk.

and mats on the ground
open
fields,

in

by roadsides and

streets,

even in

cities,

and

in the cracks of old stone walls.

But the mosses do

not attract us
scattered

much

in these places because they are so
.

and

small.
212

..

THE LIFE STORY OF THE MOSS
The pigeon-wheat moss.

213

"Who knows the pigeona picture of a clump of
it.

wheat moss you

?

Well, here

is

In the open wood, or near the woods on

damp ground,
when
it is

may

see

it

in clumps or in large patches.

The moss
fruit,

is

more

interesting to study

in

because then one can read more of

its life story.

214

LIFE STOEIES OF PLANTS
wheat
off.

of these suggested tiny
]j^

stalks

and heads.

Lift

the hood

There

is

the capsule with

a

little lid

on the end.

You can remove
is

this lid

with a pin.

There

the mouth

of the capsule

with a fringe of tiny
just see

teeth that

you can
If

with your
into

sharp eyes.

you thrust the pin

the capsule, you will bring out a dusty

powder, like pollen, or like fern spores.

These are moss spores
sule, then, is

;

the moss cap-

the spore case.
that the beauso

You should understand
tiful

red,

brown, and green plants

along the ocean shore, and called popularly " sea mosses," are not true mosses.

common
They

are algoe.

The pond scums
so

are algaa

also.

Then the " hanging moss,"
is

or Florida

moss, which
States,
is

common

in the Southern
It is a flowering

not a true moss.

plant.
seeds.

It bears true flowers

and

also forms

The true mosses do not have flowers, nor do they form true seeds. The spores of the moss form a green thread-like growth
on the
Fig. 260. Branched plant of "pigeonrfioTring

soil or rotten

wood, which

re-

sembles some of the "pond scums."

"hood"' on Bpore case at

From

this thread-like
arises.

growth the

leafy

left.

moss stem

CHAPTER XXrX
LIFE STORY OF

MUSHROOMS
tell.

They live out of sight most of the time. When they show themselves they do so only for a short time. They seem to come up in a single night, and many of them do. But
too,

Mushrooms,

have a story to

others
several

may
days

be
in

coming up.

They keep
hidden most of
the time in the

form of

cords, or

strings, until
Fig. 261.

The common mushroom showing stem,
cap, ring, gills.

they have spread
themselves out in

reach of a great feast of food in the ground or in

wood.

Then the mushroom part can grow very
its

fast,

and spring out from
So
if

hiding place into the light.

you wish

to read the story of

mushrooms you
is

must be quick about it, The common mushroom,
like

for they do not stay long.
like

many

others,

shaped

an umbrella;

it

has a handle, a ring, rays on the
215

216

LIFE STORIES OF PLANTS

underside, and a cover.

The handle
of

is

the stem, the

ring

is

called a ring or collar, the rays are called the gills

the mushroom, and
is

the cover

the cap.

The

spores.

Cut

off

the stem of the

common
Lay the

mushroom, a specimen
just expanded..

cap, gills

down, on white

paper for several hours
or overnight.

The paper
.

underneath the cap

be-

comes
Fig.
262.

covered with a
fine

A

spore print of the

common

very

dark brown

mushroom.

powder.

These are

spores, not seeds,

mushroom has no seeds. The
for the

spores

take

the

place of seed. They can start

new

points of
for

growth

the
^''^'

mushroom.

^^*

spawn and young buttons

of the mushroom.

Spawn of mushrooms. Where the common mushroom is growing in the field, dig some up with a trowel
and search in the
soil for delicate

white cords.

If a

LIFE STOEY OF

MUSHROOMS
is

217

bed where mushrooms are grown
find

near,

you

will

more

of these white cords in the soil.

This the

gardeners call
spawn.
it

We

call

my celium.
take
new
spawn and
it

Gardeners
this

sow
beds.

in

It spreads

and
Fig. 264.

increases,

and makes more
Buttons of the common mushroom just coming through the sod.

mushrooms, after
it

has feasted on

the food in the bed.
or woods this

So

in the field

spawn spreads through the earth. It takes up water and food from the soil as roots do, and yet the spawn is not a root.
The beginning
If

of the

mushroom.

you can get a quantity of this spawn of the common mushroom,
soil.

wash out the
will find

Look on the cords

for very small

round bodies.
seed.

You
Fig.

some very smaU, perhaps

no larger than a mustard

You

265. A deadly poisonous musliroom with a "bag" over tlie base of tbe stem. (Deadly ama-

may find

others as large as a marble.

nita.)

These are the buttons, the beginning of the mushroom.

218

LIFE STOEIES OF PLANTS
is

In the ones as large as marbles the upper end
This
is

enlarged.

the beginning of the cap.

When

it

reaches this

size the mush-

room grows
fast.

very-

But the spawn may grow
several months,
or a year, feeding

on decaying plant
material
Fia.23G.

in

the

A toadstool good to eat, with a "bag "on the
base of the stem.
(Royal agaric.)

ground before orn? -m n aTrrncTn a aUymUSUrOOmS
appear.

The common
mushroom, which
grows in the fields

and
in

is

cultivated

mushroom
when young,

houses, has pink
gills

and dark brown
gills
Fiu. 267.

when

old.

It

A poisonous mushroom, or toadstool, whichever you choose to call it, with no true "bag" on the stem, only scales which represent one. (The Hy amanita.)
Other mushrooms.

^^ ^ WUlte Or brOWUish Cap Sb "'

rooms

;

stem and a ring. There are many kinds of mushmany are good to eat, and some are very

LIFE STORY OF MUSHEOOMS
poisonous.
unless he

219

No one

should gather mushrooms to eat
picks.

knows very well the kind he
But
this

Some

of

the poisonous ones have a cup or bag around the lower

end of the stem.

some which have
eat.

bag or cup are good to
So you would better read their stories,

and not pick them for
eating until you

know
of

the kinds as well as

you know the faces
your playmates.
If

Fig. 268.

The ink

cap.

you should pick a basket
spores.

full of different

kinds in

the woods, and place the caps

down on white

paper, you

would catch the

You would probably find
that the spores in some
cases are black, in others

brown, yellow,
colored, or white.

rose-

The ink mushrooms. These are curious and
.
,

,.

mterestmg.

o Soon

after
gills

ti.^^

Fig. 269.

The ink cap turning

to ink.

they come up, the
to a black,

and much
cap,"

of the cap turn

inky
is

fluid

which you could write with.

One

kind

called

"ink

another

is

called

220

LIFE STOEIES OF PLANTS
These are good
and

the " shaggy mane," or " horse-tail."
to eat before they turn to ink.

Puffballs

earth stars.
see
puffballs,

Did you ever and pinch one
of dust

to see the cloud
flies

which

out

?

Some

people call them " devU's snuff-

box."
in the

They grow from spawn
ground and in rotten

wood too.
is

The cloud

of dust
start

full of spores,

which

more spawn to make more
Fig. 270.
tail

The shaggy mane, or horsemushroom. Also an ink mush-

puffballs,

and so the life story keeps spinning round and
of the

round.
starfish
;

You have heard

did you ever hear of

C'M^-

the star fungus or star

mush#^';':-..

room ?
like

We

call it

earth star, a
it is

pretty name, because

shaped

a star and grows on the
It is

ground.

a near relative

of the puffball.

Some
mosses,
balls are

will tell

you that such
puff-

interesting plants as the ferns,

mushrooms, and

cryptogams, and that

therefore

you should not try

riG. 271.

The

puffball, or devil's

to

snuffbox.

LIFE STOEY OF
read the stories they have to

MUSHROOMS
tell.

221
call

But why

them

cryptogams?
blotted out of

That

is

a terrible word that ought to be

the English language.

Why

not call

Fig.

272.

The earth

star.

them
are.

plants, as they are

?

creatures as the dandelion

They

are just as

They are just as much God's and thistle and smartweed interesting, too, and mean as

much

in our lives as they do.

Part

V

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD
CHAPTER XXX
THE STRUGGLES OF A WHITE PINE

Many

seeds but

few

trees.

If all the seeds of the

white pine which

fall

year after year from the trees in

the forest and from individual trees in the fields should

grow and form trees, the world could not contain them. For every seed ripened the chances of becoming a tree
are very few.
It

seems a great waste of energy on the

part of the tree to form so

many
But

seeds
it is

when

so

few can

ever hope to become trees.

a very fortunate

provision of Nature that a single plant should ripen so

many
small.

seeds

where we know the chances for
trees bear thousands

life

are so
of

Many

and thousands
?

seeds, but

where are the young pines

Often there

are none to be seen in the neighborhood of very prolific

trees.

The struggle
the seeds
fall

for a start.

From some
if

of the trees

on cultivated ground, and
222

the seedlings

THE STRUGGLES OF A WHITE PINE
start

223

they are plowed under while the crops are being tended. Others may fall on the hard meadow or grass
land.

The seed

can-

not bury

itself here.

If it germinates, the

root cannot go deep

enough to furnish water and food. In

the forest

many
thick

seeds
carpet

fall on the
of dry leaves

Fig. 273. Young and nearly ma^ ture fruits of

white pine.

and are unable
earth below.

to

reach

the soft, moist humus, or

All these seeds perish.

But sometimes

224

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD
field

a cultivated

may

be abandoned for several years

and

left to

grow up

to weeds, grass,

and bushes.

Ani-

mals sometimes disturb the leaves in the forest and

Fig.

274.

Stamen flowers

of the white pine.

root

up the

fresh

soil.

The woodsman may

tear open

other places

when he

drags his logs along the ground.
of

Large trees uprooted by the wind expose an area

THE STRUGGLES OE A WHITE TINE
moist
soil.

225

Seeds which
life.

fall in

these places have a

better chance for

them become covered in the soil by the beating rains. They are covered at unequal depths. The struggle for a start begins. The good seed which is covered by the soil and moistened by the rains germinates.
of

Some

Before

all

the roots are fixed deep

enough
Fig. 275.

in the soil the sun

comes out

At

left

winged

seed of
at

white pine,
a scale with
still

and several days, perhaps weeks, go by without rain. The surface soil
dries.

right

two pine seeds
position.

in

The

seedlings
perish.

which were

lightly

covered
soil

The

few

which have a good hold in the
have plenty of water and food.

by

being buried deeper than the others

The
soil,

crown of leaves

is lifted
is

above the
cast
off.

and the embryo case
seedling has pushed

The

its its

stem and leaves
roots are spreadit it

up to the

light,

and

ing in the

soil to

secure

more

firmly.
»",;';".:•.".';•'»>.);?.

There are others around
touch.

almost within

Troops of these more fortunate
Fia. 276. Seedling o£ white pine just coming up.

creatures are scattered here and there.

The struggle with other vegetation.

Now

begins a competition

among

the seedlings and

other plants for mastery of the position.

Weeds, grasses,

;

226

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD
young shrubs and oaks, spring up,
for

vines, perhaps

the soil
lific

is

thick with the seeds of other plants as pro-

in seed-bearing as the pine.

Many

of these

grow

faster

now than

the pine seedlings.

The weeds and
grass

soon tower

them and hide them. It
above
looks as
if

the pine

seedlings would be

choked

out.

But
fairly

they can do

well in the shade

better, perhaps, than the weeds
think,
if

they are
doing

capable of

such a thing. The.
pine seedlings do

not hurry.

They making

..^m^mm
Fig. 277,

'^^f'^*^""' bide their time.

White-pine seedlings casting seed coats or

They
long

are

embryo

cases.

and useful
life.

roots.

They

are preparing for a long struggle for

The

score after the first season.

In the autumn

let

us take count of the contest.

The weeds raced

swiftly

THE STRUGGLES OF A WHITE PINE
and got far ahead.
selves.

227

But they have exhausted them-

their

They have ripened many seeds, but they die leaves wither and dry up. This lets in more light

for the tiny pine seedlings.

rain beat

down.

The autumn winds and on the dead weeds and break many of them The snow finishes many more. In the spring,

^

Fig. 278.

Evergreens and broad-leaved trees just getting above the weeds and grass (Alabama).

when the snow
lings

disappears,

it

looks as

if

the

little seed-

had another chance.

If the

winter was cold and

the ground bare for a part of the time, perhaps some

were frozen to death.

The second and
pines, but trees

third seasons

come and
befdre.

go.

The weeds

flourish each year just as

They hide the tiny choke them out. The little
surely.

they cannot

grow slowly but

228

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WORLD
Per-

Another enemy than weeds to struggle against.
haps, in the
first

season, or the second, or the third,

Fig. 279.

Young white

pines getting a start. Tliree ages of pine trees are sliown (New York).

or even later, another foe appears

which pursues _dif'
It is a tiny

ferent tactics from those of the weeds.

THE STEUGGLES OP A WHITE PIKE
fungus, or mold, of delicate gossamer-like threads.
is

229
It

apt to

make

its

attack

on the seedlings

in

wet

Weather, just
threads of the

grow

inside.

at the surface of the ground. The mold make little holes in the stem and They feed on the stem, dissolving so

Fig. 280.

Young

" bull pines " getting a start (Colorado).

much
soft,

of

it

that

it

shrinks

and dead at the
itself

away and becomes thin and ground level. The little pine
It topples over to the

cannot hold

up.
it
''

ground
appears

and

dies.

We
die

say

damps

oil,"

because

it

to rot

and

on account of the wet ground.
plant mold that killed
it.

But

it

was the

little

Though

the

230

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD
pine,
it

mold was very much smaller than the

made a

successful attack.

of the seedlings

Many may fall
of this

from the attacks
insidious foe.

The pines get

larger.

Each year those that remain get higher. They seem to make up in size what they have lost in number. They grow at a more rapid rate now and are beginning to outstrip and shade the weeds. The weeds and grass cannot endure the shade as
well as the
could.
little

pines

As

the pines get higher

the branches

reach
off

out
the

and nearly cut
light

from the ground.
the

Finally

weeds

and

grass can no longer grow

underneath them.
Fig. 281.

The

few pines remaining have
Four giant wliite pines (New York).

overcome the weeds.

,

^

THE STRUGGLES OP A WHITE PINE
Other competitors appear.

231

There were, perhaps, some acorns, or beechnuts, or the seeds of other trees in the ground. few of these got a start. Some may have

A

started before the pines did.

The pines have grown

Fig. 282.

Conifers overtopping broad-leaved trees in

tlie

forest

(New Hampshire),

out of the

way

of the

weeds now.

In

fact,

they never

feared the weeds.

They were
etc.,

grateful for the shade,

perhaps, while

they were young.
are

Now

the

young

oaks and beeches, elms,

more sturdy and

232

BATTLES OF PLAINTS IN THE WOELD
They do not die at the end They grow larger and larger. During the summer their broad leaves make a great deal more shade than the Some of the pines get pine leaves do.
covered and crowded as time goes on.

dangerous competitors.
of the season.

Some
One

of the smaller ones die.
is

This
year.
feet,

struggle

renewed year

after

foot, eighteen inches, or

two

the trees add to their height annually.

Their limbs reach out and interlock as
if

in actual

physical struggle.

The

dense foliage on the upper branches
cuts off
Fig. 283.
pines,

much

light below.

The lower

An enemy of
a

shelving
spruce

branches
die

"mushroom," growing from a

away.
tall,
fore^st
ris-

hemlock.

The

smooth trunks of
trees appear

below the

ing tops, which get higher

and higher.
trees die

The smaller
fall

and

to the
Fig.
284.

ground.

It is a struggle
Spawn
it

of the "

now between
and
taller

the

taller

in Fig. 283 as

malces

its

mushroom " shown way through the

wood

of the tree.

finer

pines

and the
It is

and sturdier oaks.

a battle of giants, a
fi.ttest."

contest for the " survival of the

Here and

THE STEUGGLES OP A WHITE PINE

233

there between the round tops of the oak are clear views of the sky above. Through these openings the straight
shaft, or " leader," of the pine shoots

upward in

its

more
to

rapid growth.

Soon the pines begin here and there
trees.

tower above the other

Their branches reach out

and elbow their way above the tops of the oaks. The pines have risen above the other trees of the forest and

Pig.

285.

Effects of fire in forest

(New

Jersey).

hold almost undisputed

sway.

It

now becomes
is

a

struggle of pine with pine to see which

the stronger.
trees

Enemies of old pines.
fallen they

As the conquered

have

have crushed down others, or they have

broken large limbs and bruised the trunks.

and timber enemies, in the shape of
bracket fungi, enter the

The wood the mushroom and
is

wound by

tiny threads and rot
it

the "heart" of the tree, so that
hollow.

weakened and

Fires run through the forest, flashing through

'

234

BATTLES OP PLANTS IN THE WOELD

Sound logs. the leaves and burning longer in the dead which makes trunks are scorched and sometimes kUled,
Insects, in the other entrance places for their enemies. " " destroy. shape of " borers and saw-flies," wound and

Man sometimes a great enemy the woodman may come to level
and saw.

of

the forest.

Then

the giants with axe

Against him the pines have no means of
defense.

are

cut.

The finest trees Here is one

which has suffered from a fungus enemy, and so
has a hollow trunk. The

woodman
tree because

spares that
it is

of no

value to him.

It is left
tell

standing alone to
tale of the

the

proud pine

forest and its grand
struggle for mastery.

Then man begins
Fig. 286.

his
'

A

bracket "

mushroom

" growing

'

'

civilizing

influences.

from a maple.

and the brushwood are
ally rooted out.

The old fallen trunks burned. The stumps are graduis

The ground

plowed and planted.

Here and there are a few of the remaining giants which

man
field.

for one reason or another leaves in his cultivated

One

of these is the

towering hollow trunk of the

THE STEUGGLES OP A WHITE PINE
pine.

235

It has the look of centuries.

It has ceased to

advance.
.

Near the top

of the tall trunk are great
its

branches.
stood.

Buildings spring up where once

comrades

Many people come

to admire this battle-scarred

j^k^

Tia. 288.

White

pine.

Besult of a tuBsle with a gale.

THE STRUGGLES OF A WHITE PINE
rocked to and
limbs would
yielding,
fro.

237

Now

it

seemed as

if

the slender

off. But they were lithe and and recovered and straightened from each

be torn

heavy thrust of the and

gale.

The
off

old pine stood proud

fixed, its litheness of limb nearly gone.

A fierce
Firmly

gust of the wind snapped

a huge limb like a pipe-

stem and dashed

it

down

into the

snow bank.

and

stiffly

did

the

old pine hold

out against each

onslaught of the gale, but fiercer came the gusts and
half a dozen limbs lay half buried in the snow,

and only
old pine
It is

the stout stubs stood out where once large branches

were.
still

Finally the wind subsided, and the

stands, with only its topmost branches left.
is

sad to think that the time
old tree

near at hand

when

the

must go down.

CHAPTER XXXI
STRUGGLES AGAINST WIND

While

the wind

is

of

very great help to

many plants
rise to

in scattering their seed,

and thus giving
it

new

and young individuals,

is

often an

enemy

against

which plants have to contend.

Hurricanes and cyclones
trees.

sometimes sweep down large tracts of forest

In

some

localities

there are prevailing winds from one

direction.

These winds are so frequent and of such

force that the tree cannot maintain its

normal

erect

and symmetrical growth.

Such prevailing winds often

occur along the seacoast or near large lakes, and in

mountainous regions, where there are certain wellestablished

and marked
which tend

differences in temperature

and

air pressures

to create continuous currents

in definite directions.

In some places along the seacoast and on mountain
heights, especially

on the

sides

of

mountains or on
strong winds are

elevations

in

mountain

passes, the

nearly all from one direction and of such force that the
entire tree leans

with the wind

;

or the trunk

may

grow
side.

erect while all the branches are

on the leeward

The young

lithe

branches which come out on
238

240

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD

the windward side are bent around in the opposite
direction.

The wind keeps them bent

in this direction

so continuously that the

wood

finally fixes

growth and hardening of the the branch in that position, a good

example of the force of habit.

The young branch

finds

Pig. 290.

Tree permanently bent by wind (coast of

New Jersey).

it

easier to

bend with the wind than to
this habit is fixed,

resist

it.

When

it

becomes old

and the bent and
if

gnarled branches could not straighten even
should moderate.
in regions

the wind

Very interesting examples are seen where the trade winds occur. The trade

Pig. 291.

Old cypress trees, permanently bent by wind (Monterey jOoast of California).

Fig.

292.

Main trunk straight, branches all bent and fixed wind from one direction (Kocky MountainsJ.

to one side by

242

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD

winds are not very strong, but they blow constantly
in one direction. Fig.

293 represents a silk-cotton

tree

on the island of Nassau, in the Atlantic Ocean,
tree
this
is

inclined as a result of the constant wind.
is

The Where
It is

tree

exposed to the wind, buttresses (bracing
of the trunk.

roots) are developed at the base

said

that the silk-cotton tree

when growing

in the

Fig.

293.

Tree permanently bent by trade wind (Nassau).

forest,
it,

where the wind does not exercise such force on has no buttresses. The one-sided development of

the

banyan
is

tree

(Fig.

295), influenced

by the

trade

winds,

compare with the one shown where, in the absence of a constant wind in one direction, a symmetrical development has taken
interesting to
in Fig. 294,

place.

Fig. 294.

started,

Banyan tree spreading equally on all sides from a central trunk where the tree and taking root as it spreads to give support (photograph, Bau, No. 6109).

Fig, 295,

Banyan

tree

moved

in

one direction by trade wind.
is

The

older

portion of the tree

at the right.

CHAPTER XXXII
STRUGGLES FOR TERRITORY
I

The struggle

is

going on around us

all

the time.

There are opportunities for all of us to see some of

Fig. 296.

Sycamores, grasses, and weeds, having a liard time starting on a rock bed.

these struggles

among

the plants themselves, and the

struggles of plants with the condition of the soil or

weather

or

other surroundings.
244

Go

into

woods

or

STRUGGLES FOR TERRITORY
fields

245

almost any day and you will see some sign of

the warfare going on.
several small trees

A
is

grapevine has covered over

and

smothering and weighing
foliage near the

them down.
trees

The

grass has stopped growing under

which branch and produce dense

ground.

When

the water

is

drained from a marshy

Kg.

297.

Island witli perpendicular sides in Lake Massawiepie, Adirondacks.

piece of ground, plants

from the

drier

ground rush
is

in,

and soon the character of the vegetation

changed.

Did you ever observe how much quicker the grass or cultivated plants wither in dry weather near large
trees
off
?

The

tree takes water

from the

soil.

It cuts

the water supply of other plants.

It takes their

food also.

There

is

often a struggle

among the branches

246

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WORLD
most of the
light

of a tree to see whicli one shall get

and thus outlive
plants could

its

competitors.
If all

Certain soils are congenial to certain plants.

grow

in all situations,

we

should have

fewer kinds of plants because there would be so manycompetitors for every foot of ground.

But some plants
soil.

have found one kind of
plants

soil

congenial to them, and
So,

other plants prefer another kind of
leave
certain
territory
if

many

undisputed, and only

enter into a contest

some favorable changes take

place in those localities, provided, of course, their seeds

get

in

there.

We

do sometimes find a few plants
soil,

struggling in a very uncongenial

but they never

Fig. 298.

Island in Kaquette Kiver, Adirondacks, with sloping sides and providing different kinds of territory.

become

real competitors

with the plants which like to

grow

there.

They

are struggling only with the physical

forces of nature, not with other plants.

STEUGGLES FOE TEEEITOEY
Struggles of plants on border territory.

247

territories

The difEerent which are congenial to different plants border on one another. Sometimes the border is very abrupt,
so
is

that there

no struggle

on the part of
the plants in

one territory
to cross

over

into the other.

But in a great

many cases the change
from one
ritory
ter-

to
is

anFig. 299. Border of lake with sloping shore. Cocklebur on the right fighting with grasses on the left (Ithaca, N.Y.).

other
ual.

grad-

In these

cases the

border line becomes the seat of a
occupation

fierce

struggle for

between the plants of the

two adjoining areas.
These struggles are very commonly seen along the borders of lakes, ponds, or streams, where the ground
slopes gradually

down

to the water edge and out into

deep water.

So, also,
is

on the borders of marshes or

where there
a moist
soil

a gradual difference in elevation from
to one

up

which

is

drier.

Here we often
in battle array

see various kinds of plants

drawn up

248

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD
The arrow-leaf

defending and holding their ground.
likes to

of

grow in soil covered with water on the borders lakes and ponds, where the water is not too deep.
cat-tail flag prefers

The
it

a

little less

depth of water, and

contends for the ground nearer the shore, where the

Fig.

300.

Plants drawn in battle array on shore line of lake (Ithaca, N.Y.).

water
like

is

very shallow.
soil

The Joe-Pye weed and boneset

very moist

near the water.

In this picture (Fig. 300) you see such a contest going
on,

and the

lines of battle sharply

place

you could
of

see

drawn. Near this an army of rushes occupying the
the arrow-leaf occupies
to
it

same kind

territory that

here, because the

same conditions were congenial
out.

and the rush drove the arrow-leaf

So,

on such

dis-

puted grounds, struggles for possession go on between
the kinds of plants which like that territory, and the

weaker ones are often crowded out of existence.

CHAPTER XXXIII
PLANT SOCIETIES
Plant
associations.

Plants which

have

congenial

grow together in harmony on the same territory. There is room for several different kinds, just as there is room for many small stones in
dispositions often

the spaces between large- stones in a pile.

Moreover,

Fia.

301.

Peat-bog formation with heaths, cranberries, sedges, etc., growing on and all advancing to fill in the pond. This is a plant " atoll."

it,

several kinds of

plants of

the same size

may have

congenial dispositions toward each other, so that they

can

live

peaceably together.
cover
all

No
least

one of these kinds
are content with

tries to

the ground.

They

a spot here and there.

At
249

they have not very

pugnacious dispositions, nor are they so forward as to

250

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WOELD
push, out the others.

crowd themselves in and

Plants
societies.

which

live together

peaceably in this

way form

They

are really social in their dispositions, and often

several
others.

kinds in one

society are
live alone.

dependent on the

They could not
to,

They need some-

thing to cling
great light

or they need protection from the
of the sun.

and heat

Even where the rushes, and cat-tails, and arrow-leaf, and Joe-Pye weed seem to occupy the ground, there
are

many
fit

other kinds of plants which are not so large

that

in between the tall ones or cling to them, or

float in the water.

Peculiar societies of peat bogs.

When you

visit the

peat bogs or

sphagnum moors, where the peat moss

or

sphagnum grows, you
plants.

will find a society of peculiar

These plants like cold water and other singular
Their dispo-

surroundings for their stems and roots.
sition is so

unusual in this respect that none of the

common
territory,

plants you are familiar with in the fields and
into
after

woods would go
unless

their

society or

live

in

their

many

years the
it

character of

the territory should change so that
congenial.

would be more
will often

Growing along with the peat moss you

find cranberries, Labrador tea, the curious pitcher plant,

and many other plants with thick leaves which are
retentive of moisture.

The

plants that associate with

PLANT SOCIETIES
the peat

251
off

moss must be those which give
p'eat

water into

the air slowly, since the cold water

and certain acids
below the surface

about their roots in the dead

prevent the roots from taking up water rapidly.

The vegetation on the margin
the

of the peat

bog.
is

On
drier

margin of the peat bog, where the ground

Fig. 302.

Plants marching into the sea. They have advanced from the trees at the leit in about two hundred years.

and contains more

soil,

you may

see the plants

drawn

up in battle array.
into the peat.

The

societies are struggling

among

themselves, and are also pushing their

way
is

slowly out

The story

of the advance

plainly told

252

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WORLD
size

by the

and age

of the vegetation, as well as

by

its

difEerence in character.

Many
lakes.

of the peat bogs

were once small ponds or

The peat moss and other plants which find shallow water a congenial place to grow in begin marching out from the edge of the water toward the center
of the pond.

The stems
So hi
this

of

the peat die below and

grow above.

way they

platform in the water.

build up a floor or The dead peat now in. the
rot, as

water below does not thoroughly

the leaves do

in the moist ground of the forest, because the water

shuts out the
pile

air.

up quite
is

fast in

The partly dead stems of the moss making the platform, which someof peat.

times

entirely

composed
peat.

Other plants

may

grow along with the
to build

Their dead bodies also help

up this floor beneath. The army of peat and other water plants continues to march out toward the center of the pond, though
slowly.
Finally, in

many

cases

the line around the
is filled

shore meets in the center and the pond
floor

up, the

having been extended entirely

across.

But they
higher

keep on adding each year to the

floor, raising it

and higher, until

it is

high enough and dry enough for
forest comes to stand on the pond by the peat moss and the

the marching armies of the dry land grasses, shrubs,

and

trees.

At length a

floor built across the

other

members

of its society.

PLANT SOCIETIES
Forest societies.

253
forest

There are many kinds of
herbaceous plants.

societies, just as there are of

These
soil,

depend on the elevation, the action of the climate,
etc.,

as well as

on the kinds of

trees.

Forests in the
of the temperate

arctic regions are different

from those

Fig. 303.

Vegetation on border of marsh.

zones,

and these are

different

from the
first

forests of the

tropics.

The

society

may

be at

mixed, conetrees.

bearing,

and evergreen

trees,

with broad-leaved

In the end of the struggle some of these are likely to Where the forest growth is even and be crowded out.
the leafy tops cut off

much

of the light, the forest floor

Fig. 304.

Coniferous forest society, white pine.

PLANT SOCIETIES
will be covered
;

255

with leaves there will be an absence of shrubs and herbs, except the shade-loving ones, and the wood will be open below and free from " undergrowth."

When

the forest

is

open above because

of the unequal

growth of the

trees, or because of the

destruction of

Fig.

305.

Edge of broad-leaved

forest society in winter.

some of the larger

trees, light will enter

and encourage

a greater or less development of undergrowth,
trees, shrubs, flowers, grass, etc.

— young
you ob-

Then,

too,

serve in the forests the great numbers of mushrooms,

256

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WORLD
but
beautiful

singular

and important members
of

of

a forest society.

Some

them, however, become

enemies of trees, entering at wounds and rotting out
the heart.

Others attack the leaves, and by injuring
these food-getting

or destroying
life

organs weaken the

of the tree.

Others attack branches and deform

or blight them.

Mosses and lichens, in the temperate and arctic
forests,

greatly

influence

the

character of

the

tree

trunk which they cover and color.

Those hanging on

branches give a grotesque appearance and sometimes

do injury.
is

In sub-tropical and tropical forests there

a tendency to a change of position of the smaller
of the society

members
tree tops,

from the

forest floor to the

where hanging moss and tree-dwelling orchids

and ferns abound.
Desert societies.
are desert

The oddest looking

societies,

— the

of plant societies of different

great trunks

kinds

of

cactus,

with no leaves on them, or the

sprawling opuntias,
spines.

many
;

of the cacti covered with
lose

These large fleshy trunks do not
so

water so

rapidly as thin leaves do
suited to

these plants are well

grow

in the dry climate of the desert,
little

where

the soil

is

often parched and

water can be found
is

by the

plants.

This character of the vegetation

the

result of ages of warfare

with uncongenial conditions.

All plants not suited to

grow here

either have been

258

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WORLD
Tliose

driven out or have not been able to enter.

which could take on these forms of the
yuccas,
etc.,

cacti, or of the

bore trunks with

a

few hard-skinned

leaves at the tops, survived,

and now find these con-

ditions quite congenial to them.

Fence-corner and roadside societies.
of

Not every one
societies,

you can go to the desert to see the desert

i^fe^ y.f^..jli^»i(tx:F
Fig. 307.

-

*^

-

Desert society, chiefly yucca.

or to see the arctic or tropical societies.

You must

be content with pictures of them.

But nearly every

one can see plant societies near at hand that are
interesting
if

looked at in the right way.
cities,

Some

of

you, in large

perhaps do not often see fence

260

BATTLES OF PLANTS IN THE WORLD

corners (though there are some in the heart of

New
don't,

York

city) or

country roads.

But you surely get an
If

outing into the country once in a while.

you

you ought
corner
societies,

to,

that's

all.

Then you can study
societies,
field

fenceforest

societies,

roadside

and

the brambles, weeds, berries, golden-rod, and

asters,

and the new-mown hay.
societies.
;

Garden

Most
little

a garden society

a

you can have, at least, plot of ground where you can
of

plant seeds or see the flowers grow, and in the corner
of the garden a place

where the wild flowers and weeds
Here, I

may

struggle.

Plant societies in windows.

am

sure,

all

can have a plant society for observation.
ery in the bottom

Fasten on

a window ledge a long box, with broken bits of crock-

and garden

soil

on
off

top.

There

should be an outlet in one end to drain
water.

the surplus

Here you can grow

peas, beans,

and other

them struggle with each other and turn toward the light. In another box, or in pots, you geraniums, primroses, and can raise some flowers,
plants to see

other suitable ones.

You can
be

also

have a water-plant society by
in a well-lighted

fitting

up an aquarium

window.

This can

made by using a

large glass vessel, or perhaps some

small ones can be
pans.

made by using
soil in

fruit jars or

broad

Put some garden

the bottom to supply

PLANT SOCIETIES
some of the

261

food. Then nearly fiU the vessel with In these aquaria you can place elodea, the pond scum, and other water plants but do not have them too crowded. "With several of these aquaria and

water.

;

will have an opportunity of learning some interesting habits of plants.

the

window gardens you

While you can learn many interesting things about plants from window-garden societies, you should not
be content with these mere glimpses of the habits and
social life of plants.

The
;

best place to study plants

is

in their
visit

own homes

the fields

improve every opportunity to and woods, become acquainted with
so

some
their

of the flowers

and trees, and especially to study behavior under different conditions and at dif"When the
fields

ferent seasons of the year.

and woods

cannot be visited, the parks and gardens will furnish

many

subjects

esting stories

from which you can read most interif you will only try to interpret the sign

language by means of which the trees and flowers
express to us their lives and work.

INDEX
AbutUon, variegated leaf Acorn, 174.
of, 111.

Carbon dioxid, 123-131.
Carbonic acid, 123, 125.
Caulicle, 19, 20.

Akene, 170. Amanita, 217. American creeper, 154.
Ampelopsis, 164. Annuals, 42.
Apple, 173, 174.
Assimilation, 119.

Caustic potash, 129, 130.

Cedar of Lebanon,
Cell,
Cells, plant,

148.

make-believe plant, 76-78.

work

of, 79, 85.

Chloral hydrate, 111.
Clematis, seeds
of, 182.

Climbing by coiled stems, 151.

Banyan tree, 242, 243. Barium carbonate, 127. Barium hydrate, 127.
Baryta-water, 127.

by by

roots, 154.
tendrils, 152.

Climbing plants, 150-155.
Cobalt-chloride paper, 97.

Beggar needles, 170. Behavior of flowers, 156-167. Behavior of plants, 132-167.
Berry, 172.
Biennials, 43.

Cocklebur, fruit

of, 183, 184.

Compass plant, Corm, 52.

143.

Cotyledons, 3-6, 12-15, 72, 73, 108.

Cross pollination, 164, 167.

Blackberry, 172.

Cypress

tree,

bent by wind, 240.

Bladder membrane, 76-78, 90. Breathing of plants, 126-131. Buds, 33-39.
Bulb, 50.

Dandelion, curling of stem, 85, 86.
seeds
of, 178, 182.

Desert societies, 256-258.
fruit of, 183.

Burdock,
seeds

Bur marigold,

170.

Dodder, 151, 152. Drupe, 170, 173, 175.

of, 183. of, 156, 157.

Buttercup, flower
Buttresses, 57.

Earth stars, 220, 221. Elm, seeds of, 182.
Elodea, 115, 116, 121.

Cactus society, 257.

Embryo,

19, 22.

Calcium carbonate, 127. Capsule fruit, 169.
263

of fern, 209.

Embryo

case, 192, 193, 226.

264
Endosperm,
22, 23, 209.

INDEX
Jack-in-the-pulplt, 164-166.

Erect plants, 40, 41.
Fern, bank of ferns, 205.

Jewel weed, explosive fruits

of, 176.

Leaf

scars, 37.

bracken, 211.
Christmas, 206.
fruit dots of, 205, 206, 208.
life

Leaves, 60-73.

autumn,

62.

color of, 60-62.

story of, 204-211.

compound, 63-65.
dodder, 61.

little

spleenwort, 207.

maidenhair, 208.

duration

of, 72.

polypody, 208.
prothallium
of,

evergreen, 202, 203.

208-210.

Indian-pipe plant, 61.

spore cases, 205, 206.
spores of, 205, 206.

mosaic

of, 71.

position of, 67-70.

walking, 210.
Fire, effects of, 233.

purslane, 61, 63.
simple, 63, 64.
spine-like, 66.

Fittonia, 71, 72, 148.

Forest, mixed, 231.
conifers above broad-leaved trees,
231.

variegated, 61, 112, 113.

veins of, 72, 108.

wearing a mask, 65,

66.

Forest societies, 253-256.
Fruits, 168-175.

work

of, 73, 115.

Life substance, 92, 193.

Fruits explosive, 177.

royal bit
Light,

of, 193.

behavior of

plants toward,

Garden balsam, explosive
176.

fruits of,

136-149.
effect of,

on growth, 137-139.
of, in

Garden societies, 260, 261. Gas given off in starch-making, 121125.

importance
116, 117.

starch-making,

influence of, on leaves, 142-149.
193, 208.

Germ,

Lime-water, 127.
Maple, seeds
of, 183. of,

Germ pocket
208, 209.

of fern prothallium,

Girdle scars, 37.

Milkweed, seeds
Moss, capsule
life

177, 178.

Mimosa, 132-135.
Herbaceous plants, 44. Hydrogen, 124, 125. Hypocotyl, 19.
Impatiens, explosive fruits
Iodine, tincture of, 109.
of, 176. of, 213, 214.

story of, 212-214.

pigeon-wheat, 213, 214.
spores
of, 214.

Mushroom, bracket,
horse-tail, 220.

232, 234.

INDEX
Mushroom, ink
life

265

cap, 219.

Protoplasm, 92.
royal bit
of, 193.

story

of,

216, 221.

mycelium

of, 217.

Pufiballs, 220.

poisonous, 217-219.

Pumpkin

flower, 158-160.

shaggy mane, 220.
shelving, 232, 234.

Raspberry, 172, 173.
Receptacle, 171.
Respiration, 126-131.

spawn, 216.
spore print, 216.
spores, 216.

Nitrogen, 124.

Rhizome, 49. Roadside society, 259. Root hairs, 10, 11, 15,
Roots,
air, 55, 56.

16, 58, 59.

Oak, life story of, 194-203. moss-covered, 200, 201.
over-cup, 200, 201.
red, 197, 200.
scarlet, 196, 200.
virhite,

behavior
32.

of,

toward moisture,

bracing, 56.
fibrous, 55.

growth

of, 24, 25. of, 87.

194, 198-200.

pressure

Ovule, 192.

taproots, 54.

Oxidation, 131.

work

of, 57,

87-93.

Oxygen, 123-125.
Peat bogs, 251.

Rootstock, 49.

Samara, 182, 183.
Scale soars, 37.

Pepo, 174.
Perennials, 43.
Petioles, rigidity of, 83, 84.

Screw

pine, bracing roots of, 56.

Seedlings coming up, 1-6.
Seeds, contrasted with fruits, 168.

Pine, white, fruits of, 223, 225.

seeds of, 225.
struggles of, 222-237.
Pines, bull, 229.

germinating, 7-17.

how formed, 158, 192. how scattered, 176-184.
winged, 182.
Sensitive plant, 132-135.

enemy
232.

of,

a shelving mushroom,

Plant atoll, 250. Plant societies, 249-261.

Shoots, winter, 33-39.
Silk-cotton tree, bent
242.

by trade wind,

Pod, 169, 171, 172.

Poison ivy, 55, 154, 155.

bracing roots
Silkweed, seeds

of, 57.

Pome,

174. 117.
of, 182.

of, 177, 178.

Pond scum,

Prickly lettuce, seeds
Prostrate plants, 42.

Skunk cabbage, 165, 167. Spawn of bracket mushroom,
Sperm, 193, 208, 209.

233.

266
Sperm pocket
208, 209.

INDEX
of fern protliallium,

Teasel, flowering of, 163, 165.

Toadstool, 218.

Star cucumber, 153.
Starch, 109.
test for, 109, 114.

Torus, 171.

Touch-me-not, explosive
176.

fruits

of,

uses

of, 119.

Tuber,

51.

Stem, 45-53.
ascending, 49.

Vascular bundles, 106-108.
Virgin's bower, seeds of, 182.

burrowing, 49.
climbing, 48.
deliquescent, 47.
diffuse, 47.

Water,
87-93.
.'52.

absorption

of,

by

plants,

excurrent, 46.
growtli
of, 26, 31,

loss of,

by

plants, 94-106.

prostrate, 48.
trailing, 48.

use

of, to plant,

74-86.

Stick-tights, seeds of, 183.

Stone

fruit, 170.

Strawberry, 170, 171, 173. Struggles against wind, 238-243.
for territory, 244-248.

Water paths in plant, 106. Water vapor, 96, 97. Wild lettuce, seeds of, 182. Wind, struggles against, 238-243.
trade, 242.
trees

permanently bent by, 240explosive
fruits
of,

Sunflower, behavior of, in flowering,
161-163.
effect of light on, 144-146.

243.

Witch
177.

hazel,

Sweet-pea, flower, 189-191.

Woody
Yucca

plants, 44.

formation of seed, 192, 193.
life

story of, 185-193.

society, 258.

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