What are Open Pollinated Plants?

Open-pollinated plants are those which have been pollinated through sexual contact or through asexual reproduction. There are many types of open-pollinated plants including but not limited to:

• Herbaceous (open) – These include herbs such as parsley, thyme, rosemary and mint; they do not produce seed. They may be classified into two groups: herbaceous perennials and annuals.

• Woody (closed) – These include trees, shrubs and vines. They produce seeds when grown from cuttings or when pollinated sexually. Some examples of these are: blueberry, crabapple, dogwood, elderberry, gooseberries and hollyhock.

• Fruitless (closed) – These include fruits like peaches and apricots which cannot be produced from either sexual or asexual means. Examples of fruitless plants are: dahlias, lilies, roses and strawberries.

• Herbaceous perennial – These are plants that have been pollinated by either wind or insects. Examples of these include: basil, chervil, chives, cilantro and coriander.

• Annual – These are plants that grow year after year without any interruption in their growth cycle. Examples of these include: carrots, cucumbers and lettuce.

What is Cross Pollination?

Cross-pollination is the transfer of pollen between plants. These plants are also known as crossable plants. The plant species that is capable of cross-pollination is known as cross-pollinator. The most common cross-pollinators include bees, wind and other insects. There are some plants which can only be cross-pollinated in a lab environment.

What are the types of Cross-Pollination?

There are two types of cross-pollination: self-pollination and cross-pollination.

Self-Pollination

Self-pollination is when the plant’s own pollen is transferred directly from the anther to the stigma of the same flower or a similar plant of the same species. The process is also known as selfing. In this process, the plant does not need the help of other plants or animals and the chances of decreasing genetic diversity are much higher.

Cross-Pollination

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Cross-pollination is when the plant’s own pollen is transferred from the anther to the stigma of a different flower of a different plant; this is done by bees, wind or other insects. Cross-pollination leads to greater genetic diversity.

What are the advantages of Open-Pollination?

Some of the advantages of open-pollination are:

They prevent inbreeding within a particular species.

They increase the overall genetic diversity of that species.

They allow crops and other plants to adapt to their environment.

With open-pollination, many different types of varieties can be grown from a single plant species.

What is Tissue Culture?

Tissue culture is the process in which plant cells are multiplied in a laboratory environment. During this process, the limitations and restraints of sexual reproduction are removed and plants can be grown indefinitely provided that sufficient nutrients and space are available.

What are the features of a tissue cultured plant?

Some of the features of a tissue cultured plant include:

They are free from seed-borne diseases

They have increased shelf life without the need for cold storage.

They can be grown without any restrictions on time of the year, soil type or climate.

What are the types of tissue culture?

There are two types of tissue culture:

Vernalisation: This is a process in which the plant is exposed to a certain environmental condition before it is transferred to another condition. An example of this type of tissue culture is the exposure of seedlings to low temperatures before they are planted outside.

Cuttings: This is a process in which the clippings of a plant are used to clone itself. An example of this type of tissue culture is the propagation of banana plants through stem cuttings.

What are the advantages of using tissue cultured plants?

Some of the advantages of using tissue cultured plants include:

They have uniform growth because they are cloned from a single parent plant and hence there is no genetic diversity within them.

They have no pests or diseases.

They are free from the effects of in-breeding because they do not rely on sexual reproduction.

They have a longer shelf life and can be stored for up to ten years without any special care.

What are the types of tissue cultured plants?

There are two types of tissue cultured plants: seed propagated plants and plantlets.

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Seed Propagated Plants

These are the plants which grow from tissue culture of plant seeds. The seeds are first subjected to vernalization, then they are grown in sterile conditions and finally they are multiplied in large quantities. After this process, the seeds are cheaper and can be stored for a longer period of time without losing their vigor. Some examples of this type of tissue cultured plant are wheat, oat and strawberry.

Plantlets

These are the plants which grow from plant tissue without first being subjected to vernalization. Instead, they are grown from apical meristem tissues. This type of tissue cultured plants has several advantages over seed propagated plants. Some examples of this type of tissue cultured plants are carnations, chrysanthemums and strawberries.

What is a Plant Biotechnology?

Plant biotechnology is the process of altering the genetic make up of a plant to get desired traits in them.

What are the techniques used in plant biotechnology?

Genetic engineering, Gene splicing, and Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are the techniques that are used in plant biotechnology.

Genetic engineering involves transferring the genes of one organism into another organism of a different species.

Genetic engineering is used to transfer the useful traits of one organism into another. An example of this is transferring the gene of resistance to antibiotics from a microorganism into agaricus bisporus to create a new strain of mushroom that does not decay quickly.

Gene splicing involves cutting the gene of one organism and pasting it into the same place in the genome of another organism. The site where the gene gets pasted is called the homologous site.

Some examples of this are:

Inserting spider’s web protein into tomatoes to keep them from breaking when they are ripe. The spider’s web protein creates a stronger strand within the cell walls.

Inserting the e. coli b-glucuronidase enzyme into potatoes removes toxins that normally build up during potato growth.

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are organisms that have had their genetic material altered. This is done by transferring DNA from one organism into another, which results in changing the genome of a species.

What is Agrobiodiversity?

Agrobiodiversity is the term used for all the biological resources that we obtain from plants. These biological resources help sustain life on earth and improve our quality of life. Agrobiodiversity also helps in evolving new medicines to cure human diseases.

What are the different types of Agrobiodiversity?

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1. Medicinal Plants: Medicinal plants are used in the production of medicines.

2. Food Crops: Food crops provide calories and nutrients to people and animals.

They are staple foods like rice, wheat, corn. They also include fruits and vegetables like banana, lettuce, tomato etc.

3. Coarse Food Crops or Staple Foods: These are food crops that provide a lot of calories, but little nutrients.

They include Cassava, Tapioca etc.

4. Fodder Crops: Fodder crops are grown to feed animals.

Alfalfa, clover etc. are fodder crops.

5. Ornamentals: Ornamentals are plants that are grown for their good looks.

Rose, Sunflower etc. are some common ornamental plants.

6. Trees: They provide shade, wood for various purposes etc.

Trees also play a role in controlling global warming by absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen.

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7. Turf and Lawns: Turf is the thick roots, stems and leaves of grass plants that are mowed to make lawns.

What is Biodiversity?

Biodiversity refers to the number of species found in a particular place. The more the biodiversity of a place, the more is the variety of species. Biodiversity helps in the balanced growth and functioning of an ecosystem.

Why do you think we should conserve agrobiodiversity?

We should conserve agrobiodiversity for the following reasons:

1. Biodiversity has provided humans with valuable resources since the beginning of time.

2. We need plants for food, medicines, and other daily needs.

3. Most agricultural plants also have value to wildlife.

For instance, bees are important for pollination and provide honey which is useful for humans.

4. Many wild species of plants and animals can be helpful to humans in the future.

5. If we don’t have biodiversity to draw upon, we lose a lot of our resources.

What is the importance of a gene?

A gene is a unit of heredity. It is a segment of DNA that determines some aspect of your physical characteristics or even behavior.

What is the difference between genotype and phenotype?

Genotype refers to an organism’s genes. Phenotype refers to the expression of those genes. For example, if you have genes for brown eyes, your genotype is considered to be “brown-eyed.” However, if your eyes are blue, your phenotype is “blue-eyed.”

What is a transgenic organism?

A transgenic organism is an organism that has had foreign genes added to it.

What is a GMO?

A GMO (genetically modified organism) is an organism that has had its genetic material altered. This alteration can be done by natural processes like mutation or by human processes like genetic engineering in a lab.

What are some of the concerns about GMOs?

Some of the concerns about GMOs include:

1. GMOs have never been tested over a long period of time, so their long-term impact is unknown.

2. Because the process of creating GMOs often involves dicing up the DNA and gluing it together in different arrangements, it can lead to abnormalities and unexpected side effects.

3. The process of creating GMOs often involves using toxic metals and compounds like lead, cadmium and arsenic.

4. Some types of GMOs designed to resist specific poisons, but those poisons are harmful to humans.

5. The use of GMOs reduces the biodiversity of plants because it limits the types that can be grown.

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6. Many GMOs are designed to create sterile seeds so that they can only be used once.

This increases the need for more GMO seeds.

7. Some GMOs have been found to be harmful to humans, such as corn with increased levels of a natural toxin, or food with lower nutritional value.

What is meant by the terms “input” and “output”?

In environmental science, input is anything that is added to an ecosystem, such as plants, animals, water, air. Output is anything that is removed from the ecosystem, usually in a usable form. For example, a beaver’s dam is an input because it adds wood to the ecosystem. Logs that flow down the river and out to sea are an output because they are being removed from the ecosystem in a usable form.

What is a population?

A population is a group of the same species living in the same area.

What is meant by the term biomass?

The amount of living matter in a particular ecosystem is known as that ecosystem’s biomass. The more biomass an ecosystem has, the more resources (such as food) are available to its population of plants and animals.

What is biofuel?

Biofuel is fuel that is made from biological materials like plants or animal waste.

What is climate?

Climate is the average weather conditions of a particular area.

What is desertification?

Desertification is the process by which fertile land is converted to desert. This happens when there is a change in climate, such as an increase in temperature or a change in the rainfall.

What is meant by the term ecotourism?

Ecotourism is tourism focused on seeing beautiful natural areas and endangered species. It can help to raise money for preservation efforts.

What is fertilizer?

Fertilizer is a garden fertilizer that contains nutrients plants need to grow.

What are some of the concerns about overpopulation?

Some of the concerns about overpopulation include:

1. There is more demand for limited resources like food and water. This can lead to competition between people for those resources, and even war.

Sources & references used in this article:

Flowering and fertility changes in six generations of open pollinated sweetpotatoes by FW Martin, A Jones – 1971 – worldveg.tind.io

Inbreeding and true seed in tetrasomic potato. I. Selfing and open pollination in Andean landraces (Solanum tuberosum Gp. Andigena) by AM Golmirzaie, R Ortiz, GN Atlin, M Iwanaga – Theoretical and applied …, 1998 – Springer

Adaptive plasticity of floral display size in animal-pollinated plants by LD Harder, SD Johnson – Proceedings of the Royal …, 2005 – royalsocietypublishing.org

Essential oil yield and composition and secondary metabolites in self-and open-pollinated populations of mint (Mentha spp.) by V Nazem, MR Sabzalian, G Saeidi… – Industrial Crops and …, 2019 – Elsevier

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