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Muhammad Salehuddin Ahmad

Nor Wahidah Hasim
1. Meristematic zones
2 .Apical meristems
2.1 Shoot apical meristems
2.2 Root apical meristems
2.3 Intercalary meristem
2.4 Floral meristem
2.5 Apical dominance
3. Primary meristems
4. Secondary meristems
 A meristem is a tissue in all plants consisting
of undifferentiated cells (meristematic cells)
and found in zones of the plant where growth
can take place.

 The term “meristem” was first used by Karl

Wilhelm von Nägeli (1817-1891) from his
book “Beiträge zur Wissenschaftichen
Botanik” in 1858. It is derived from the Greek
word “merizein”, meaning to divide in
recognition of its inherent function.
 Differentiated plant cells generally cannot
divide or produce cells of a different type.
Therefore, cell division in the meristem is
required to provide new cells for expansion
and differentiation of tissues and initiation of
new organs, providing the basic structure of
the plant body.
 Apical meristems are the completely
undifferentiated (indeterminate) meristems in a
plant. These differentiate into three kinds of
primary meristems. The primary meristems in
turn produce the two secondary meristem
types. These secondary meristems are also
known as lateral meristems because they are
involved in lateral growth.
Apical meristem

Shoot apical Root apical

Intercalary meristem Floral meristem Apical dominance
meristem meristem
 The apical meristem, or growing tip, is a
completely undifferentiated meristematic
tissue found in the buds and growing tips of
roots in plants.
 function – to begin growth of new cells in
young seedlings at the tips of roots and shoots
(forming buds, among other things).
 Apical meristems are composed of several

 The number of layers varies according to plant

type. In general the outermost layer is called
the tunica while the innermost layers are the
Shoot apical meristem
 is the site of most of the embryogenesis in
flowering plants.
 It is where the first indications that flower
development has been evoked are manifested.
Root apical meristem
 root apical meristem produces cells in two
 It is covered by the root cap, which protects
the apical meristem from the rocks, dirt and
Intercalary meristem
 occur only in monocot (particularly grass)
stems at the base of nodes and leaf blades.
 Intercalary meristems are capable of cell
division and allow for rapid growth and
regrowth of many monocots.
Floral meristem

 When plants begin the developmental process

known as flowering, the shoot apical meristem
is transformed into an inflorescence meristem
which goes on to produce the floral meristem
which produces the familiar sepals, petals,
stamens, and carpels of the flower.
Fig. 2. Expression pattern of
two floral organ identity
 Apical meristems may differentiate into three kinds of
primary meristem:
 Protoderm - lies around the outside of the stem and
develops into the epidermis.
 Procambium - lies just inside of the protoderm and
develops into primary xylem and primary phloem. It
also produces the vascular cambium, a secondary
 Ground meristem develops into the pith. It produces
the cork cambium, another secondary meristem.
 There are two types of secondary meristems,
these are also called the lateral meristems
because they surround the established stem of
a plant and cause it to grow laterally (i.e.
larger in diameter).
 Vascular cambium - produces secondary
xylem and secondary phloem, this is a process
which may continue throughout the life of the
plant. This is what gives rise to wood in plants.
Such plants are called arborescent. This does
not occur in plants which do not go through
secondary growth (known as herbaceous
 Cork cambium - gives rise to the bark of a tree.
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