Botany Fast Facts and Terminology

  • A jelly obtained from seaweeds which is used as a medium for culturing bacteria is Agar.
  • A large group of primitive plants, mostly aquatic and capable of photosynthesis are Algae.
  • A mildly addictive alkaloid found in snubber of plants, such as tea, coffee and cola is Caffeine.
  • A chemical sprayed on plants that causes leaves to fall off prematurely is called Defoliant.
  • An organism or structure having a single set of unpaired chromosomes is Haploid.
  • Flexible bluish-white connective tissue made up of the protein collagen is Cartilage.
  • Metabolism is a word which describes all the changes that happen inside a living thing.
  • The locality or external environment in which a plant or animal lives is called Habitat.
  • Condition caused by a shortage of hemoglobin, the oxygen- carrying component of red blood cells is Anaemia.
  • Gland that secretes hormones into the blood-stream in order to regulate body processes is Endocrine gland.
  • Light-sensitive tissue lining the interior of the vertebrate eye, and consisting of two types of cells is Retina.
  • Trees and shrubs that shed their leaves before the onset of winter or a dry season are called Deciduous.
  • Tube or oviduct in mammals, one of two tubes that carry ova (eggs) from the ovary to the uterus is Fallopian.
  • The natural or man-made conversion of arable or forest land into barren deserts is called Desertification.
  • The Indian hemp or bhang plant which is the source of a fibre and drugs like hashish and marijuana is Cannabis.
  • The entire zone of air, land and water at the surface of the earth that is occupied by living things is Biosphere.
  • The chief artery dorsal blood vessel carrying oxygenated blood from the left ventricle of the heart is Aorta.
  • Remains of food and other debris passed out of the digestive tract of animals are Faeces.
  • A human abnormality caused by a mutation in which the ovum has an extra chromosome is Down’s syndrome.
  • A branch of agriculture dealing with garden crops, generally fruits, vegetables and ornamentals is Horticulture.
  • An organism that feeds on dead and decaying plants and animals, causing decomposition is Saprophyte.
  • An organized collection of plant specimens for identification and reference purposes is Herbarium.
  • A substance, synthesized by micro organisms, which damages or kills other micro organisms, is Antibiotic.
  • An organism having both male and female reproductive organs in the same individual is Hermaphrodite.
  • Diet that includes carbohydrate, protein, fat, vitamins, water, minerals and roughage is Balanced diet.
  • The term Cereal refers primarily to barley and wheat, but may also refer to oats, maize, rye, millet and rice.
  • A somewhat oval body attached to the ovary wall in a flower which matures into a seed after fertilization is Ovule.
  • A substance which releases hydrogen ions in water and has a pH less than 7, e.g. hydrochloric acid in the human stomach is Acid.
  • An organ of vegetative reproduction in flowering plants consisting of a horizontal underground stem growing from a parent plant is Rhizome
  • Inflammation of the nerve endings, mostly occurring in the tropics and resulting from a deficiency of vitamin B 1 (thiamine) is Beriberi.
  • Reproduction in which new organisms are formed from a single parent without gamete production is asexual reproduction.
  • Sharp-pointed tearing teeth near the front of the mouth used for killing prey and ripping off pieces of food are called Canines.
  • The digestive canal in animals, in humans it is a tube about nine metres in length running from mouth to anus is Alimentary canal.
  • The female reproductive organ of a flower (megasporophyll) bearing the ovules which mature into seeds after fertilization is Carpel.
  • The green coloured pigment universally found in plants, responsible for capturing the solar energy for photosynthesis is Chlorophyll.
  • The method of finding out the age of fossils by determining the amount of radiocarbon (14C) remaining in them is Radiocarbon dating.
  • The narrowest blood vessel in vertebrates, -between 8 and 20 micrometer in diameter, barely wider than a red blood cell is Capillary.
  • The structure in the vertebrate eye which controls the size of the pupil and hence the amount of light entering the eye is iris.
  • Carbohydrates include every kind of starch and sugar, grain foods composed of starch foodstuffs like cane sugar and glucose.
  • Any agent that increases the chance of a cell becoming cancerous, including various chemicals, some viruses, X-rays and forms of nuclear radiation is Carcinogen.
  • Casein is the main protein of milk, from which it can be separated by the action of acid, the enzyme rennin, or bacteria (souring); It is also the main component of cheese.
  • Vitamins and minerals comprise micro nutrients, can be broadly divided into fat soluble and water soluble vitamins, and are necessary auxiliaries in metabolism.
  • The spontaneous movement of liquids up or down narrow tubes such as plant xylem vessels or the spaces existing between soil particles is Capillary action.
  • The industrial use of living organisms to manufacture food, drugs or other products, for example, micro-organisms are used in ethanol production by fermentation, brewing with yeast and enzyme production is Biotechnology.
  • The study of the structure of the body and its component parts, especially the human body (as distinguished from physiology, which is the study of bodily functions) is Anatomy.
  • In food technology, any natural or artificial chemical added to prolong the shelf life of processed foods (salt or nitrates), alter the colour or flavour of food, or improve its food value (vitamins or minerals) is called Additive.
  • A biological catalyst produced in cells and capable of speeding up the chemical reactions necessary for life by converting one molecule (substrate) into another is Enzyme.
  • A cold-blooded animal, such as a lizard, that relies on external warmth (ultimately from the sun) to raise its body temperature so that it can become active is Ectotherm.
  • A pair of endocrine glands situated anterior to the mammalian kidneys and secreting the hormone adrenalin which causes in- creased heart-beat, breathing, etc., in response to conditions of stress is Adrenal glands.
  • Proteins are the chief substances of the cells of the body, important constituents of muscles and other tissues and vital fruits like blood, enzymes which assist in the digestion of food, and anti- bodies which are the body de- fences against infections are also mainly protein in nature.
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Botany Fast Facts and Terminology
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