Botanical Words Alphabetical List - SP
SPADICEOUS: Bearing flowers on a fleshy or succulent spike enclosed in a leaf-like spathe, as do palms.
SPADICIFORM: Resembling a spadix.
SPADICOSE: Having flowers on or comprising a spadix.
SPADIX: The fleshy spike usually enclosed in a spathe. The central columns in the "flowers" (inflorescences) of Calla Lilies, Jack-in-the-Pulpits, etc.
SPATHE: One, or sometimes two, large bracts, which grow near the base or surround a flower cluster or individual bud. Examples are the Calla Lily (Zantedeschia), Jack-in-the-Pulpit and Anthurium. See illustration above.
SPATULATE: Spatula-shaped; oblong or rounded with a long, narrow base, as a spatulate leaf or petal.
SPECIES: A category in plant classification, the rank below genus, containing closely related, very similar individual plants. Species are ordinarily grouped to form genera. The following are examples of species within a genus (group). Sequoia (Redwood tree) is the genus name and the species (or varieties) that belong to that group are sempervirens, gracilis, pendula, etc. These are written along with Sequoia. (E.g. Sequoia sempervirens is one species, Sequoia gracilis is another, and so on.)
SPECULUM: The shiny, colored region of the labellum, as in some Ophrys species.
SPHAGNUM MOSS: Type of very porous moss found in bogs. Used in the true bog garden, it supplies the acidic conditions necessary for carnivorous plants.
SPHAGNUM PEAT: The decaying sphagnum moss.
SPICA: In botany, a spike.
SPICE: One of the fragrant vegetable condiments used for the seasoning of food, such as pepper, allspice, nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves; collectively, such substances as a class, as the trade in spice(s).
SPICIFORM: Shaped like a spike.
SPICOSITY: The state or condition of having spikes.
SPICULA: A small or secondary spike.
SPICULATE: Covered with or divided into small spikes.
SPICULE: A small, sharp point.
SPIKE: Long, narrow, unbranched cluster of sessile flowers produced along a central axis.
SPIKELET: A secondary spike, especially applied to grasses, whose flowers are grouped on several small spikes attached to a central axis.
SPINDLE: 1. To shoot or grow in a long, slender stalk or body; to form a stem. 2. To grow a long stalk or stem instead of forming flowers or fruit.
SPINE: A modified leaf, which can be woolly, bristly, hair-like, needle-like, barbed, or curved and may be colored white, red, or yellow to black. Nearly all cacti and some succulents have spines. Cacti spines grow from areoles and detach easily, but succulent spines grow right from the stem tissue. Although spines protect the soft plants against predators, their main function is to condense moisture so that it drips to the ground.
SPINESCENT: Ending in a spine or sharp point; tending to by spiny or thorny.
SPINIFORM: Having the form of a spine or thorn.
SPINOSE: Full of spines; equipped with spines or thorns.
SPINULE: A small spine.
SPINULESCENT: Producing small spines; having the form of a small spine.
SPINULOSE: Having small spines.
SPORANGE: The case or sac in plants in which the spores are produced or carried.
SPORE: These reproductive bodies are smaller than seeds. A seeds consists of a seed coat surrounding an embryo plant and the cotyledons or seed leaves; a spore consists of a spore coat encasing a minute amount of protoplasm. Spores are produced by almost all flowerless plants such as, Fungi, Algae, Ferns, Lycopodiums and Equisetums. A large Fern can produce 30 million spores in one season. When the ripe spores of a Fern come into contact with moisture, they form flat, green, heart-shaped bodes called prothallia; these bear the sexual reproductive organs and, when fertilized, young Ferns are produced.
SPORE CASE: The sporangium, or covering of the spores.
SPOROPHYLL: The leaf or leaf-like organ that bears the spores.
SPOROPHYTE: The stage of the life cycle of ferns and seed plants in which the nonsexual organs or reproduction are borne, as distinguished from gametophyte.
SPORT: This means a sudden variation in habit of growth or blossom color from the rest of the plant or others plants of its kind. This is caused by a genetic change that may be accidental or spontaneous, or intentionally induced. Therefore, if a pink flower appears on a yellow variety of Mum, it is said to be a sport of that variety. Likewise, bush Roses often give rise to climbing "sports". The botanists call such sports, mutants.
SPROUT: 1. To shoot forth or begin to grow, as a bud from a seed. 2. To put forth shoot. 3. A shoot of a plant, as from a germinating seed, a rootstock, tuber, runner, etc., or from the root (a sucker), stump, or trunk of a tree.
SPUR: These are the slender, tubular projections of the petals or sepals of some flowers such as Columbines, Delphinums and Dutchman's Breeches. This word also describes short, woody side shoots growing along the branches of some trees and shrubs such as Apples and Pears. A saccate or tubular extension of the labellum or other floral parts in many Orchid species, usually bearing nectar.
SPUR-PRUNING: A method of pruning trees, by which one or two eyes of the previous year's wood are left and the rest cut off, so as to leave spurs or short rods.
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