Vascular Cambium – Definition & Detailed Explanation – Botanical Terms Glossary

What is Vascular Cambium?

Vascular cambium is a type of meristematic tissue found in the stems and roots of vascular plants. It is responsible for secondary growth, which allows plants to increase in girth and produce wood. The vascular cambium is a thin layer of cells that divide and differentiate to produce xylem and phloem tissues. These tissues are essential for the transport of water, nutrients, and sugars throughout the plant.

Where is Vascular Cambium located in a plant?

Vascular cambium is located between the xylem and phloem in the vascular bundles of plants. In stems, the vascular cambium is found in a cylindrical layer that surrounds the pith. In roots, the vascular cambium is located in the center of the root, between the xylem and phloem tissues. This location allows the vascular cambium to produce new xylem and phloem cells on both the inner and outer sides of the tissue.

How does Vascular Cambium function in plant growth?

The vascular cambium functions by dividing and differentiating to produce new xylem and phloem cells. As the cells divide, they push the older xylem cells towards the center of the stem or root, creating a ring of wood. The new xylem cells provide structural support and help transport water and minerals throughout the plant. The new phloem cells are responsible for transporting sugars produced during photosynthesis to other parts of the plant.

What is the role of Vascular Cambium in secondary growth?

Vascular cambium plays a crucial role in secondary growth, which is the increase in girth of stems and roots in woody plants. Secondary growth allows plants to grow taller and wider, providing structural support and increasing the plant’s ability to transport water and nutrients. The vascular cambium produces new xylem cells on the inside of the stem or root, and new phloem cells on the outside, leading to the formation of annual rings in woody plants.

How does Vascular Cambium contribute to the formation of xylem and phloem?

The vascular cambium contributes to the formation of xylem and phloem by undergoing cell division and differentiation. The cells produced by the vascular cambium differentiate into two types: xylem cells, which are responsible for transporting water and minerals, and phloem cells, which transport sugars. The xylem cells are arranged in a series of vessels that form a continuous pathway for water and nutrients, while the phloem cells are arranged in tubes that transport sugars from the leaves to other parts of the plant.

What are the key characteristics of Vascular Cambium?

Some key characteristics of vascular cambium include its thin layer of cells, its location between the xylem and phloem, and its ability to undergo continuous cell division and differentiation. The vascular cambium is a meristematic tissue, meaning it is capable of producing new cells throughout the life of the plant. This allows woody plants to continue growing and producing wood year after year. The vascular cambium is essential for the survival and growth of vascular plants, as it is responsible for the production of xylem and phloem tissues that are vital for plant function.