From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The plants portal

Diversity of plants image version 5.png
Plants are a major group of life forms and include familiar organisms such as trees, herbs, shrubs, grasses, vines, ferns, mosses, and green algae. About 350,000 species of plants, defined as seed plants, bryophytes, ferns and fern allies, are estimated to exist currently. As of 2004, some 287,655 species had been identified, of which 258,650 are flowering and 15,000 bryophytes. Green plants, sometimes called metaphytes, obtain most of their energy from sunlight via a process called photosynthesis.

Aristotle divided all living things between plants (which generally do not move), and animals (which often are mobile to catch their food). In Linnaeus' system, these became the Kingdoms Vegetabilia (later Metaphyta or Plantae) and Animalia (also called Metazoa). Since then, it has become clear that the Plantae as originally defined included several unrelated groups, and the fungi and several groups of algae were removed to new kingdoms. However, these are still often considered plants in many contexts, both technical and popular. Indeed, an attempt to perfectly match "plant" with a single taxon is problematic, because for most people the term plant is only vaguely related to the phylogenic concepts on which modern taxonomy and systematics are based.

Selected article

Starr 040723-0267 Verbascum thapsus.jpg
Verbascum thapsus (Great or Common Mullein) is a species of mullein native to Europe, northern Africa and Asia, and introduced in the Americas and Australia. It is a hairy biennial plant that can grow to 2 m tall or more. Its small yellow flowers are densely grouped on the stem, which bolts from a large rosette of leaves. It grows in a wide variety of habitats, but prefers well-lit disturbed soils, where it can appear soon after the ground receives light, from long-lived seeds that persist in the soil seed bank. It is a common weedy plant that spreads by prolifically producing seeds, but rarely becomes aggressively invasive since its seeds require open ground to germinate. It is a very minor problem for most agricultural crops since it is not a very competitive species, being intolerant of shade from other plants and unable to survive tilling. It however hosts many insects, some of which can be harmful to other plants. Although individuals are easy to remove by hand, populations are difficult to eliminate permanently. It is widely used for herbal remedies with emollient and astringent properties, and especially recommended for coughs and related problems, but also used in topical applications against a variety of skin problems. The plant was also used to make dyes and torches.

Selected picture

Cscr-featured.svg Credit: User:Fir0002

Sunflowers (Helianthus annuus) are annual plants native to the Americas, that possess a large inflorescence (flowering head). The outer florets are the sterile ray florets and can be yellow, maroon, orange, or other colors. The florets inside the circular head are called disc florets, which mature into seeds.

More selected pictures...



Related topics

Did you know...

Eucalyptusdeanei-Blue Mountains National Park.jpg

Tasks you can do

There are no active tasks for this page
    1. Describe all families, genera and species of the kingdom Plantae.
    2. For species, describe botanical properties, distribution, multiplication, usage (medicine, food, etc.), botanical history, cultivation information.
    3. Develop and implement a robust method of naming plant article for the ease of navigation and searching for Wikipedia users.
    4. Maintain Category:Plants and its subcategories.


    Related portals

    Associated Wikimedia

    The following Wikimedia Foundation sister projects provide more on this subject:






    Learning resources

    Travel guides




    Purge server cache