Why is a cactus leaf modified?

Why is a cactus leaf modified?

Its leaves are modified to extremely small-sized spines to minimize the surface area from which water can be lost. Its stem takes up the role of photosynthesis thus allowing it to survive in deserts. Hence, the Cactus is the correct answer here.

What type of modification is a cactus?

Almost all cacti are succulents, meaning they have thickened, fleshy parts adapted to store water. Unlike many other succulents, the stem is the only part of most cacti where this vital process takes place. Most species of cacti have lost true leaves, retaining only spines, which are highly modified leaves.

How are leaves modified?

Leaves can be modified in the form of spines that reduce water loss and also act as a defence. Some are modified into tendrils to provide support to the plant. Some leaves are thick that help in water storage. Some are modified to catch and digest insects.

How are cactus stems modified?

Cacti are plants that have succulent stems, pads or branches with scales and spines instead of leaves. Cactus pads are actually modified stems with a waxy coating. The prickly spines are modified leaves that break up the evaporative winds blowing across pad surfaces, and help shade the stem.

What is the modified leaf?

Whole leaves or parts of leaves are often modified for special functions, such as for climbing and substrate attachment, storage, protection against predation or climatic conditions, or trapping and digesting insect prey. Spines are also modified leaves. …

What are two examples of modified leaves?

Modification Definition Example
1) Tendrils The leaves are modified into slender wiry and coiled structures called leaf tendrils and support climbers to climb Pisum Sativum
2) Spines The leaves modified into a pointed structure and usually protect them from herbivores. Opuntia

How are cactus adapted to survive in a desert?

A cactus is able to survive in the desert due to the following features: (i) It has long roots that go deep inside the soil for absorbing water. (ii) Its leaves are in the form of spines to prevent water loss through transpiration. (iii) Its stem is covered with a thick waxy layer to retain water.

Why are leaves of the cactus plant reduced to spines?

The leaves of ‘cactus’ are reduced to ‘spines’ to prevent the loss of water by transpiration. EXPLANATION: Leaves lose water by the process of transpiration but cactus grows in deserts and cannot afford to lose water. The spines of the cactus store water.

What are the modified leaf?

The structure and function of a leaf can be modified over the course of evolution as a plant adapts to a particular environment. Some leaves may be converted to storage structures below ground (as with a bulb) or into plant defense structures (as with a spine). In each plant (A-D), one leaf has been shaded with orange.

Which plants have modified leaves?

(i) Entire Leaf is Modified into Tendril, e.g., Lathyrus aphaca (wild pea) (Fig. 4.19). (ii) Upper Leaflets Modified into Tendrils, e.g, Pisum sativum (pea) (Fig. 4.20), Lathyrus odoratus (sweet pea).

How are cactus adapted to the desert?

How has cactus adapted to the desert?

Cacti are well adapted for survival in the desert. The spines also protect the cacti from animals that might eat them. Very thick, waxy cuticle to reduce water loss by evaporation . Reduced number ofstomata to reduce water loss by transpiration .

Why are the leaves of a cacti modified?

In addition, most cacti leaves have thorns, spines, spikes, quills, prongs, and bristles that help the plant protect itself. Modified leaves help plants live in a diverse variety of environments.

How are the spines of a cactus modified?

So spines are modified leaves, and they grow out of organs called areoles that are modified branches. Areoles are a distinguishing feature of a cactus plant, meaning that if a plant has areoles, it must be a cactus and if it doesn’t have areoles, it can’t be a cactus.

What makes a cactus different from other cactus?

In addition to their odd growth habits and lack of leaves, another one of the remarkable cactus adaptations is their spines. All cacti produce spines, although a few types only have them when they are young.

What happens if you cut a cactus off?

The threat of animals snacking on a cactus isn’t just limited to the bites they take, either. Any cut into a cactus’ waxy flesh will make it leak water until the affected area dries out and seals off, so anything the plant can do to prevent the loss is crucial.

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