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Malta Wild Plants - Wild plants glossary
Category: Animals and Nature > Plants of Malta
Date & country: 06/04/2012, MA
Words: 773


Serrulate
serrate with very small teeth

Sessile
attached directly and without a petiole, pedicel or other type of stalk, said of either leaves or flowers

Setaceous
bristle-like

Setose
covered with bristles

Sheath
a leafy, tubular structure usually on a sedge or grass that envelopes the stem

Shrub
a small, woody plant with several stems

Sigmoid
double-curved, s-shaped

Silicle
a fruit similar to a silique, but much shorter, not much longer than wide

Silique
a type of enlongated capsule found in the brassicaceae, either half of which peels away from a central, transparent, dividing membrane

Simple
a leaf that has one part, not subdivided into leaflets

Sinistrorse
turned to the left or spirally arranged to the left (compare dextrorse)

Sinuate
strongly or deeply wavy, usually referring to a leaf margin

Sinus
the space or division, usually on a leaf, between two lobes or teeth

Sori
clusters of spore sacs on a fern frond (singular

Sp
abbreviation for 'species'

Spadix
a floral spike or head in which the flowers are borne on a fleshy axis

Spathe
a large bract or pair of bracts subtending and usually partially enclosing an inflorescence

Spatulate
spoon-shaped, gradually widening to a rounded apex

Specific Epithet
the second part of a scientific name which identifies the species

Spicule
a short, pointed, epidermal projection

Spike
an elongated, unbranched inflorescence with sessile or nearly-sessile flowers

Spikelet
in grasses, the smallest aggregation of florets plus any subtending glumes

Spine
a sharp-pointed rigid structure, usually a highly modified leaf or stipule

Spinescent
bearing a spine or spine-like point

Spinose
having a stiff and tough acuminate tip

Spinulose
bearing very small spines

Sporangium
a spore-case or sac in which spores are produced in a fern

Spp
abbreviation for the plural of 'species'

Spumose
foamy or frothy

Spur
a hollow extension of a petal or sepal such as characterizes the larkspurs, and which often produces nectar

Squamate
having or producing scales

Squarrose
having spreading, recurved tips

Ssp
abbreviation for 'subspecies'

Stamen
the male or pollen-bearing organ of a flower, composed of filament and anthers

Staminate
describing a male flower that contains one or more stamens but no functional pistils

Staminode
a sterile stamen or other nonfunctional structure occupying the position and having the overall appearance of a stamen

Standard
also called a banner, this is the upper petal or segment of a papilionaceous flower

Stellate
starlike, with radiating branches and often referring to the pattern of hairs on the surface of a leaf

Stem
the main upward-growing axis of a plant which bears the leaves and flowers

Stenopetalous
with narrow petals

Stenophyllous
with narrow leaves

Stigma
the terminal portion of a pistil, which receives the pollen

Stipe
that portion of a fern frond below the rachis, i.e. below where the leaflets are attached

Stipitate
borne on a stipe or stalk

Stipule
an appendage at the base of a petiole, usually in pairs

Stolon
an elongated horizontal shoot above or below the ground, rooting at the nodes or apex

Stomate
a small pore or opening on the surface of a leaf through which gaseous exchange takes place, i.e. the diffusion of carbon dioxide, oxygen and water vapor

Stone
the hard, woody endocarp enclosing the seed of a drupe

Stramineus
straw-colored

Striate
with fine longitudinal lines or ridges

Strict
very straight and upright

Strigose
covered with rough, stiff, sharp hairs that are more or less parallel to a particular surface

Strobilus
an inflorescence that is characterized by imbricated bracts or scales such as are borne on the ephedras

Style
the narrowed portion of a pistil between and connecting the ovary and the stigma

Sub-
prefix meaning under, slightly, somewhat or almost

Suberous
corky-textured

Subspecies
a group of plants within a species that has consistent, repeating, genetic and structural distinctions

Subtend
to occupy a position below and adjacent to

Subulate
awl-shaped

Succulent
fleshy, juicy and thickened

Suffruticose
low shrubby, with the lower part of the stem woody and the upper part herbaceous

Suffused
tinted or tinged

Sulcate
grooved or furrowed

Sulfureous
sulfur-colored

Summer Annual
plant with seeds germinating in spring or early summer and completing flowering and fruiting in late summer or early fall (compare winter annual)

Superior Ovary
one that is located above the perianth and free of it

Surcurrent
extending upward from the point of insertion, as a leaf base that extends up along the stem (compare decurrent)

Surficial
growing near the ground, or spread over the surface of the ground

Suture
a junction or seam of union, or a line of dehiscence

Swale
a depression or shallow hollow in the ground, typically moist

Sympatric
growing together with, or having the same range as

Sympetalous
having the petals more or less united

Syn-
prefix meaning united

Synandrous
with united anthers

Synoecious
having male and female flowers in the same flowerhead

Synsepalous
having the sepals more or less united

Taproot
the primary root continuing the axis of the plant downward often quite deeply into the ground

Tawny
tan in color

Taxon
any group of plants occupying a particular hierarchical category, such as genus or species

Tendril
a slender portion of a leaf or stem, modified for twining

Tenuous
slender or thin

Tepal
a collective term for sepals and petals, used when they cannot be easily differentiated

Terete
circular in cross-section

Terminal
at the end of the branch or stem

Ternate
in three's

Tesselate
checkered

Tetra-
prefix meaning four

Thorn
a short, stiff, sharp-pointed branch

Throat
in some corollas with fused petals, the point of juncture between the tube and limb, a somewhat difficult point to distinguish

Tomentose
wooly, with long, soft, matted hairs

Toothed
having small lobes or points along the margin (as on a leaf)

Tortuous
twisted or bent

Transpiration
emission of water vapor from the leaves

Transverse
at a right angle to the longitudinal axis of a structure

Tri-
prefix meaning three

Triandrous
having three stamens

Trichome
a hair-like outgrowth from the epidermis

Trichotomous
three-forked

Trifid
three-cleft to about the middle

Trifoliate
having three leaves