Plants: Putting Down Roots
Scientists say at least 300,000 different types of plants exist today. Plants provide us with food, shelter, and even clothing.
Nearly all plants live on land. They hold themselves in place with roots. Roots also absorb water from the soil.
Almost all plants make their own food through photosynthesis. Parts of the plant contain a green substance called chlorophyll. These parts combine carbon dioxide and water in the presence of sunlight to make sugar and release oxygen.
Not all plants make seeds. Walk through a forest, and you'll see moss growing on trees or rocks. The 10,000 species of moss are a type of plant called bryophyte. They reproduce by making spores, similar to fungi.
Seedless vascular plants also make spores. Vascular means the plant has “tubing.” The tubing gets water from the roots to the leaves where the plant makes food. The 12,000 species of ferns are seedless vascular plants.
Other plants reproduce from seeds. Many, but not all, seed-bearing plants make their seeds in flowers.