Seeds are common to most plants and are a primary means of spreading the species. The creation of seed is the sole purpose for all of the spring and summer flowers that gardeners enjoy. Most seeds have similar structures, but there are some exceptions in the world of flowering plants.
The seed is covered with a protective shell called a seed coat. The interior consists of an embryo and an endosperm, which is for storing nutrients.
When moisture, temperature and lighting conditions are correct, the seed coat splits open. The embryo grows into the root stem and leaf structure, consuming the endosperm until the plant can produce food on its own.
Seeds form in the ovaries of a flower. A ripened ovary is called a fruit. Common seeds are corn kernels, nuts, coconuts, berries and peas. Flour is milled grain-crop seeds.
A seed is the result of sexual reproduction in plants. Seeds are the beginning of the next generation of the species for many plants. Seeds add genetic variety to the species, allow for cross-species hybridization, and allow for mutations.
Seeds are a staple crop for the world's food supply. All grain crops are seeds. Modern commercial seed has increased per-acre crop yield by up to seven times compared to the 1930s.
- Seed Structure
- Fruit and Seed Quality
- Improved Seed and Crop Yields
- The Seed Industry in U.S. Agriculture
seed anatomy, agricultural seed, types of seeds
About this Author
Brian Albert has been in the publishing industry since 1999. He is an expert in horticulture, with a focus on aquatics and tropical plants like orchids. He has successfully run an aquatic plant business for over five years. Albert's writing experience includes the Greater Portland Aquarium Society newsletter and politics coverage for a variety of online journals.