SeedPlants213-page1 - The ferns are the only...

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Seed-Dispersing Plants - 1 The seed plants include the most successful plants in our earth's ecosystems today: the conifers and flowering plants, along with three other, less prominent, phyla. As we have discussed, the production of a seed, kept within an ovule for dispersal, gives a plant a distinct survival advantage over a single-celled spore, with the seed's nutrient-packed head start for the next generation and a variety of methods of dispersing to new locations. In addition, transporting sperm within a pollen grain frees the plant from the need for water for fertilization. Megaphylls, multi-stranded vascular leaves, provide more conduction and support for a larger surface area for photosynthesis.
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Unformatted text preview: The ferns are the only spore-dispersing vascular plants that have functional megaphylls. As with all vascular plants, the dominant generation for the seed plants is the sporophyte generation. All seed plants are heterosporous. Heterospory often ensures greater genetic variation for sexual reproduction, providing for enhanced survival in changing or different environments. Both male and female gametophytes are dependent upon the sporophyte and female gametophytes are retained by the sporophyte plant until the seeds (of the next sporophyte generation) are mature. Seed Plant Traits Seed plant fossils date back about 350 million years....
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