Aquatic, Wetland and Invasive Plant Glossary
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Click one of the letters above to be taken to a page of all terms beginning with that letter.
- saccate search for term
- - a. (L. saccus, bag) having the form of a sac; pouchlike.
- sagittate search for term
- - a. (L. sagitta, arrow) shaped like the head of an arrow with the basal lobes pointing downward.
- salverform search for term
- - a. (L. salvus, safe; forma, shape, figure, image) said of a corolla in which the tube is essentially cylindrical, the lobes abruptly spreading; a gamopetalous corolla.
- sarmentose search for term
- - adj. (L. sarmentosus, fr. sarmentum, twig; plus, -osus, -ose) producing slender prostrate branches or runners.
- scabrid search for term
- - a. (L. scabridus, rough) slightly roughened.
- scabrous search for term
- - a. (L. scabrosus, rough) with small points or knobs, like a file; scaly, scabby, rough.
- scandent search for term
- - adj. (L. scandent-, scandens, pres. part. of scandere, to climb - more at scan) climbing plant of a creeping or scandent nature.
- scape search for term
- - n. (L. scapus, the shaft of a pillar, the stalk of a plant) a stem growing from the crown of the root, bearing the blossom without leaves.
- scapose search for term
- - a. scape-bearing; scapigerous; consisting of a scape.
- scarious search for term
- - a. (LL. scariousus, rough) tough, thin, dry, and semitransparent.
- schizocarp search for term
- - n. (Gr. schizein, to cleave; karpos, fruit) a dry fruit, as in the maple, that splits at maturity into two or more one seeded carpels which remain closed.
- sclerenchyma search for term
- - n. (Gr. skleros, hard; enchyma, an infusion) tissue of uniformly thick-walled, dead cells in the stem whose principal function is mechanical. The cells are usually grouped into fibers.
- scorpioid search for term
- - a. (Gr. skorpois, scorpion; eidon, form) resembling a scorpion; said of a circinnately coiled determinate inflorescence in which the flowers are two-ranked and borne alternately at the right and left.
- secund search for term
- - a. (L. secundus, following) arranged or growing on one side only, as flowers or leaves on a stem.
- seed search for term
- - n. (AS. saed, seed) the part of a flowering plant that contains the embryo and will develop into a new plant if sown; a fertilized and mature ovule.
- sepal search for term
- - n. (Fr. sepale; L. separatus, separate; pelatum, petal) any of the leaf divisions of the calyx. When a calyx consists of but one part, it is said to be monosepalous; when of two parts, it is said to be disepalous; when of a variable and indefinite number of parts, it is said to be polysepalous; and when the parts are more or less united, it is said to be gamosepalous.
- septate search for term
- - n. (L. septatus, surrounded by a fence) having or divided by a septum or septa.
- septicidal search for term
- - a. (L. septum, division; caedere, to cut or divide) dividing through middle of ovary septa; dehiscing or breaking open at a natural dividing line.
- septum search for term
- - n. (L. septum, a partition) a partition separating two cavities or masses of tissue, as in fruits. pl. septa.
- serrate search for term
- - a. (L. serrare, to saw) notched on edge like a saw; having sharp notches along the edge pointing toward the apex; as, a serrate leaf. When a serrate leaf has small serratures upon the large ones, it is said to be double serrate, as in the elm. A serrate-ciliate leaf is one having fine hairs, like eyelashes, on the serratures. A serrate-dentate leaf has the serratures toothed.
- sessile search for term
- - a. (L. sedere, to sit) sitting directly on base without support, stalk, pedicel, or peduncle; attached or stationary as opposed to free living or motile.
- seta search for term
- - n. (L. seta, bristle) a bristle-like structure.
- setaceous search for term
- - a. (L. seta, a bristle) bristly; set with bristles; consisting or having bristles.
- sheath search for term
- - n. (AS. sceth, shell or pod) a protective covering; lower part of leaf enveloping stem or culm.
- shoot search for term
- - n. (ME. schoten, to shoot, dart) a young branch which shoots out from the main stock.
- short-day plant search for term
- - a plant requiring less than 12 hours of daylight in order for flowering to occur.
- silique search for term
- - n. (L. siliqua, a pod) the long, narrow pod of plants of the mustard family, Cruciferae, with valves which fall away from a frame bearing the seeds.
- sinuate search for term
- - a. (L. sinuare, to bend) having a wavy margin, as some leaves.
- sinus search for term
- - n. (L. a bent surface, a curve, a fold or hollow, bosom, a bay) the rounded depression between two consecutive lobes. as of a leaf. pl. sinuses, sinus.
- slough search for term
- - n. (AS. sloh, a slough) a wet place of deep mud or mire; a sluggish channel; a swamp, bog, or marsh, especially one that is part of an inlet or backwater.
- spadix search for term
- - n. (L. spadix, a palm branch) a racemose inflorescence with elongated axis, sessile flowers, and an enveloping spathe; a succulent spike; a fleshy spike of flowers, usually enclosed in a spathe.
- spathaceous search for term
- - a., having a spathe, or having the nature of a spathe.
- spathe search for term
- - n. (Gr. spathe, flat blade) a large leaflike part or pair of such enclosing a flower cluster (especially a spadix).
- spatulate search for term
- - a., shaped like a spatula or spoon, gradually widening distally and with a rounded tip, as some leaves.
- species search for term
- - n. (L. species, particular kind) a group of interbreeding individuals, not interbreeding with another such group, being a taxonomic unit including two names in binomial nomenclature, the generic name and specific epithet, similar and related species being grouped into a genus.
- Spermatophyta search for term
- - n. (Gr. sperma, seed; phyton, plant) a major division of the plant kingdom, characterized by reproducing by seed and subdivided into the Gymnospermae and Angiospermae.
- spicate search for term
- - a. (L. spicatus, pp. of spicare, to furnish with spikes) having the form of a spike.
- spicule search for term
- - n. (L. spicula, a small spike) a small, slender, sharp-pointed piece, usually on a surface; a small spike of flowers.
- spike search for term
- - n. (L. spica, spike, ear of corn) a long flower cluster attached directly to the stalk.
- spikelet search for term
- - n., a small spike of a large one; a subdivision of a spike; as the spikelets of grasses.
- spine search for term
- - n. (ME, thorn, spinal column, fr. L. spinsa, thorn, spine, spinal column) a stiff sharp-pointed plant process as a modified leaf, leaf part, petiole, or stipule.
- spore search for term
- - n. (Gr. sporos, seed) any of various small reproductive bodies, often consisting of a single cell, produced by mosses, ferns, etc. asexually (asexual spore) or by the union of gametes (sexual spores); they are highly resistant and are capable of giving rise to a new adult individual, either immediately or after an interval of dormancy.
- sporophyte search for term
- - n. (Gr. sporo, a seed; phyton, plant) the diploid spore-producing phase in plants with alternation of generations.
- spur search for term
- - n. (AS. spura, spora, a spur) a slender, tubelike structure formed by an extension of one or more petals or sepals; also refers to a very short branch with closely spaced leaves.
- stalk search for term
- - n. (probably from Dan. stilk; Sw. stjelk; Icel. stilker, a stalk) the stem or main axis of a plant, which supports the leaves, flowers, and fruit. Any lengthened support on which an organ grows, as the petiole of a leaf or the peduncle of a flower.
- stamen search for term
- - n. (L. stare, to stand) the male reproductive organs in flowers; it is situated immediately within the petals, and is composed, in most cases, of two parts, the filament, and the anther, which is filled with pollen.
- staminate search for term
- - a., producing or consisting of stamens; flowers with stamens but not pistils.
- staminodium search for term
- - n. (L. stamen, a thread, and Gr. eidose, form) a sterile stamen or an organ resembling one.
- standing crop search for term
- - weight or organic material that can be sampled or harvested at any one time from a given area, but may not necessarily include the entire plant. Usually refers to normal harvesting procedures, unless specified, for the particular plant under consideration.
- stellate search for term
- - a. (L. stella, star) starlike; said of hairs that branch in such a manner as to radiate from a central point.
- stem search for term
- - n. (AS. stemm, tree stem) main axis of a plant typically above the soil surface, having leaves or scales, and a characteristic arrangement of the vascular tissue.
- stem tuber search for term
- - swollen structures produced by stolons and runners which remain dormant during adverse conditions and later grow into new plants when the conditions become favorable for growth.
- stigma search for term
- - n. (Gr. stizein to prick) the upper tip or part of the pistil of a flower receiving the pollen. It is generally situated at the upper extremity of the style.
- stipe search for term
- - n. (L. stipes, stalk) the stalk-like basal part of an ovary, or of a fruit such as an achene; the stem bearing pileus in mushrooms and toadstools.
- stipel search for term
- - n., a small secondary stipule at the base of a leaflet.
- stipule search for term
- - n. (L. stipula, a stalk, a straw) one of two foliaceous or membranaceous processes developed at base of a leaf petiole, sometimes in tendril or spine form, sometimes fused.
- stolon search for term
- - n. (L. stole, stolonis, a twig, shoot) a stem which grows from a stem above the ground, taking root at the tip, and ultimately developing a new plant.
- stoma search for term
- - n. (NL. fr. Gr. mouth - more at stomach) one of the minute openings in the epidermis of leaves, stems, and other plant organs through which gaseous interchange between the atmosphere and the intercellular spaces within these structures occur; the opening together with its associated guard cells and accessory cells. pl. stomata.
- stramineus search for term
- - a. (L. stramen, straw) of or like straw; straw-colored.
- striated search for term
- - a. (L. striatus, grooved) marked by narrow lines or grooves, usually parallel.
- strigose search for term
- - a. (L. striga, a furrow) covered with stiff hairs; ridged; marked by small furrows; surface clothed with stiff, often appressed hairs, these usually pointing in one direction.
- style search for term
- - n. (Gr. stylos, pillar; L. stylus, pricker) slender upper part of pistil, supporting stigma.
- stylopodium search for term
- - n. (Gr. stylos, pillar; pous, foot) the fleshy support at the base of the style in flowers of the carrot family, Umbelliferae.
- submerge search for term
- - vt. (L. submergere, to dip or plunge under) to sink or plunge beneath the surface of water.
- submersed plants search for term
- - plants growing with their root, stems, and leaves completely under the surface of the water.
- suborbicular search for term
- - adj. (L. sub, under, below; orbis, circle) approximately circular.
- subulate search for term
- - a. (L. subula, an awl) awl-shaped; slender and tapering gradually to a fine point.
- succulent search for term
- - n. (L. succus, juice) juicy; full of juice or sap.
- suffruticulose search for term
- - a. (L. sub, under, below; frutex, a shrub) moderately frutescent; obscurely shrubby; usually woody only basally.
- sulcate search for term
- - a. (L. sulcus, a furrow) furrowed, grooved; scored with deep, parallel furrows or grooves.
- suture search for term
- - n. (L. suere, to sew) a seam formed when two parts unite; a seam or line or groove; usually applied to the line along which a fruit dehisces; any lengthwise groove that forms a junction between two parts.
- swale search for term
- - n. (Sw. sval, cool) a hollow or depression, especially one in wet, marshy ground.
- swamp search for term
- - n. (Sw. svampig, swampy) spongy land; low ground filled with water; a wooded area having surface water much of the time.
- sympodial search for term
- - a. (Gr. syn, with; pous, foot) branching, growth of axillary shoots when apical budding has ceased.
- syncarp search for term
- - n. (Gr. syn, together; karpos, fruit) a multiple or aggregate fruit derived from numerous separate ovaries of a single flower; a collective unit, as a blackberry.
- syntepalous search for term
- - flowers in which the tepals are fused.