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Plant Vs Flower: What Do You Know About The Differences?

The debate of plant vs flower has been racing around for years now, and it’s difficult to settle it briefly as both ‘plants’ and ‘flowers’ give different meanings!

Generally, a plant is a collection of stem, bark, roots, flower buds, leaves, and other accessory parts with distinct roles. The flower is the colorful part of a flowering plant that serves the function of pollination, reproduction, and fruit and seed formation. 

Learn more about the plants, the functions of their parts, and how they (plant vs flower) differ from each other from the article below.

What Is A Plant?

A plant is an autotrophic organism that prepares its own food by absorbing water from the soil, light from the sun, and carbon dioxide from the air.

Here, ‘autotrophic’ means an organism that prepares its own food from simple ingredients available in the surroundings.

Plants intake carbon dioxide and release oxygen, which drives the life of all living organisms. This process is called photosynthesis.

Also, a plant has many parts (primary and secondary) with distinct functions that work in sync.

Do You Know?

Plants consist of Herbs, Shrubs, and Trees with further sub-classifications.

Herbs are fleshy plants without any woody or stiff parts.

Shrubs and Trees are plants with supple amounts of woody parts with larger stature than herbs.

Let’s learn about the basic parts of the plant and their functions in brief!

Image illustrates different parts of the plant
The basic parts of a plant include roots, shoots, leaves, stems, and flowers.

1. Leaf

Leaves are the green, fleshy, and flat part of the plant that allows it to prepare food via photosynthesis.

They occur in many shapes and sizes depending on the growth habit and adaptation of the plant in different habitats.

2. Stem

Stem is the central, rigid component of the plant that provides support to other parts while also internally helping to transport food and water throughout the plant.

Like leaves, stems may also have numerous modifications depending on the plant species, but their primary function remains the same in all plant species.

Do You Know?

In Onions, the bulbous structure is a modified leaf with a reduced stem.

You can also see the stem modifications in Potatoes, an underground stem known as a tuber. 

3. Root

Roots are the belowground part of the plants that grow towards gravity, create firm legroom for the aerial parts (leaves, flowers, and stems), and absorb water and minerals from the soil.

Roots are of two types: tap and fibrous, depending on the growth habits of monocot and dicot plants.

Do You Know?

In Mangroves, the roots grow upward against gravity, known as the Breathing Roots or Pneumatophores.

4. Flower

In plant vs. flower, flowers are usually colorful and the most important plant part carrying reproductive functions.

A flower is the most complex part of the plant, with many subparts, each with a unique role.

However, these parts may be absent from the flowers of some plants and form special features.  

Structure Of Flower

A flower basically has 4 main parts, which organize themselves around the center.

Let’s learn about the major parts of the flower and their individual function.

1. Corolla

The corolla is the outermost colorful part of the flower.

Some basic features and functions of the corolla are as follows.

  • A group of petals is known as a corolla. Flowers of different plants sport distinct colored corolla.
  • Corolla lures in insects and birds, supporting the process of pollination.
  • The petals in a corolla arrange themselves in one or many whorls around the center of the flower.

2. Calyx

The calyx is present just below the corolla.

The basic features and functions of the calyx are as follows.

  • A group of sepals is known as a calyx. It is generally green in color and leafy.
  • Like corolla, the sepals in calyx position themselves in one or many whorls below the petals.
  • The main function of calyx is to protect the flower bud during growth.
Image illustrates the parts of a flower
Corolla, Calyx, Pistil, and Stamens are the 4 main parts of a flower that carry out the process of pollination and reproduction.

3. Pistil

The pistil is a stalk-like central part of the flower.

The common traits and roles of the pistil are as follows.

  • The pistil is the female part of the flower and has 3 main components: stigma (tip), style (middle), and ovary (base).
  • Pistils may vary in numbers and can be one to many. However, in some flowers, they are discreet.
  • During pollination, pistils help to receive the pollen and aid in pollination. 

4. Stamen

The stamens are thin and are present, encircling the pistil toward the center.

Some common features and functions of the stamens are as follows.

  • The stamen is the male part of the flower and has 2 main components: anther (tip) and filament (base).
  • Like pistils, the number of stamens may vary in a flower from one to many. But in some blooms, they are inconspicuous.
  • During pollination, the anther present at the tip produces pollens carried by pollinators to the stigma of the same or different flower.

Do You Know?

Not all flowers have similar arrangements or the presence of the basic primary flower parts.

For example, in the aroid Anthurium flowers, the blooms consist of Spathe and Spadix, where male and female parts are not noticeable clearly.

Importance Of Flowers In Nature

Besides plant vs. flower, flowers are an integral part of nature. They serve many uses for birds, insects, animals, and humans.

  • Reproduction in all flowering plants occurs with the help of the flowers.
  • Nectar from flowers is the food source of many animals, birds, and insects.
  • In some plants, flowers can offer a safe hiding spot for organisms.
  • Flowers of some plants are edible as they impart taste to many dishes.
Image illustrates different types of inflorescence
In plants, inflorescence is the arrangement of flowers along a flowering axis.
  • Dry flowers can be shaped to form decorative crafts and elevate indoor beauty.
  • Flowers of many plants have symbolic meanings worldwide.
  • Colorful flowers can amplify gardening beauty and boost allure.

From Editorial Team

Deadheading spent blooms!

You can encourage the growth of more leaves and stems in a plant by deadheading spent flowers.

However, you must wait for the flowers to fade off to let the pollination process if you want seeds!