Transportation in Plants – Xylem and Phloem | Transpiration

You know that every living organism is made up of cells. Cells are the structural and functional units of life. You also know that energy is derived from food. Cells in our body obtain energy from the breakdown of glucose. They utilize this energy for carrying out their life processes. Have you ever wondered how plants get food and energy to grow and survive? Let us learn how transportation in plants occurs.

Like us, plants also get their energy from food but unlike us, they make their own food by the process of photosynthesis. Plants take water, minerals, and nutrients from the soil by their roots and transport them to the leaves. The leaves prepare food for the plants using carbon dioxide in the presence of sunlight. And at the same time give away oxygen and water vapors.

This process is known as photosynthesis. Now we will learn how the food prepared by the leaves is carried to the parts of the plant which cannot prepare food.

Transportation in Plants- Xylem and Phloem

You know that “Tissue is a group of cells that perform specialized functions. Are there any issues present in plants also? Yes! Actually, plants have pipe-like vessels to transport water and nutrients from the soil. These vessels are made up of special cells forming the vascular tissues or conducting tissues.

In plants conducting tissues are of two types- xylem and phloem.

What are xylem and phloem and how do they help in transportation in plants?

Xylem: – It is a part of a plant’s vascular system that transports water and dissolved minerals from the roots to the rest of the parts of the plant.

Phloem: – It is that part of plants vascular system that transports foods made in the leaves to all other parts of the plant. Leaves make use of water and dissolved minerals absorbed by xylem, Carbon Dioxide from the atmosphere, and the presence of sunlight to prepare food. This process is known as photosynthesis

Now once the food is prepared, it’s time for phloem to transport this prepared food from leaves to other parts of the plants. This is how the conductive tissues xylem and phloem work.

Transpiration in Plants

You would have wondered how water & minerals are transported from soil to different parts of the trees. It is the “suction force” which is responsible for the transport of water & minerals from roots to other parts of the plant.

Once the water & minerals reach the leaves, some of them are used for making food. Not all the water absorbed is used by the plant. What happens to the rest of the molecules of water & minerals? There are small openings or pores on the lower surface of the leaves. These pores are called “Stomata”.

The excess water is expelled out from these cells in the form of water vapors. Loss of excess water in the form of vapors from leaves through stomata into the atmosphere is known as Transpiration.

During this process that is during the transportation & transpiration of water,” suction force” develops within the plant. It is the same process that takes place when we suck water with a straw. This suction force is used to pull more water and minerals for the preparation of more food.

The Suction Force is also known as Suction Pull or Transpiration Pull.

Importance of Transpiration

  1. Transpiration pull can pull water to great heights in tall trees. Now let’s learn what are the advantages of Transpiration.
  2. Transpiration increases the moisture content of the atmosphere & causes a cooling effect in the immediate surroundings.
  3. The suction force produced in plants because of Transpiration helps to absorb more water & minerals from the soil.
  4. Transpiration Plays an important role in the distribution of water & minerals throughout the plant.
  5. It also helps plants to get rid of excess water.

Read More- Nutrition in Plants: Modes of Nutrition and Photosynthesis

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