Monocotyledons referred to as monocots, are flowering plants whose seeds contain only one embryonic leaf, or cotyledon. They constitute one of the major groups into which the flowering plants have traditionally been divided, the rest of the flowering plants having two cotyledons and therefore classified as dicotyledons, or dicots. However, molecular phylogenetic research has shown that while the monocots form a monophyletic group or clade, the dicots do not. Monocots have always been recognized as a group, but with various taxonomic ranks and under several different names; the APG III system of 2009 recognises a clade called "monocots" but does not assign it to a taxonomic rank. The monocots include about 60,000 species; the largest family in this group by number of species are the orchids, with more than 20,000 species. About half as many species belong to the true grasses, which are economically the most important family of monocots. In agriculture the majority of the biomass produced; these include not only major grains, but forage grasses, sugar cane, the bamboos.
Other economically important monocot crops include various palms and plantains, gingers and their relatives and cardamom, pineapple, water chestnut, leeks and garlic. Many houseplants are monocot epiphytes. Additionally most of the horticultural bulbs, plants cultivated for their blooms, such as lilies, irises, cannas and tulips, are monocots; the monocots or monocotyledons have, as the name implies, a single cotyledon, or embryonic leaf, in their seeds. This feature was used to contrast the monocots with the dicotyledons or dicots which have two cotyledons. From a diagnostic point of view the number of cotyledons is neither a useful characteristic, nor is it reliable; the single cotyledon is only one of a number of modifications of the body plan of the ancestral monocotyledons, whose adaptive advantages are poorly understood, but may have been related to adaption to aquatic habitats, prior to radiation to terrestrial habitats. Monocots are sufficiently distinctive that there has been disagreement as to membership of this group, despite considerable diversity in terms of external morphology.
However, morphological features that reliably characterise major clades are rare. Thus monocots are distinguishable from other angiosperms both in terms of their uniformity and diversity. On the one hand the organisation of the shoots, leaf structure and floral configuration are more uniform than in the remaining angiosperms, yet within these constraints a wealth of diversity exists, indicating a high degree of evolutionary success. Monocot diversity includes perennial geophytes such as ornamental flowers including and succulent epiphytes, all in the lilioid monocots, major cereal grains in the grass family and forage grasses as well as woody tree-like palm trees, bamboo and bromeliads, bananas and ginger in the commelinid monocots, as well as both emergent and aroids, as well as floating or submerged aquatic plants such as seagrass. Organisation and life formsThe most important distinction is their growth pattern, lacking a lateral meristem that allows for continual growth in diameter with height, therefore this characteristic is a basic limitation in shoot construction.
Although herbaceous, some arboraceous monocots reach great height and mass. The latter include agaves, palms and bamboos; this creates challenges in water transport. Some, such as species of Yucca, develop anomalous secondary growth, while palm trees utilise an anomalous primary growth form described as establishment growth; the axis undergoes primary thickening, that progresses from internode to internode, resulting in a typical inverted conical shape of the basal primary axis. The limited conductivity contributes to limited branching of the stems. Despite these limitations a wide variety of adaptive growth forms has resulted from epiphytic orchids and bromeliads to submarine Alismatales and mycotrophic Burmanniaceae and Triuridaceae. Other forms of adaptation include the climbing vines of Araceae which use negative phototropism to locate host trees, while some palms such as Calamus manan produce the longest shoots in the plant kingdom, up to 185 m long. Other monocots Poales, have adopted a therophyte life form.
LeavesThe cotyledon, the primordial Angiosperm leaf consists of a proximal leaf base or hypophyll and a distal hyperphyll. In monocots the hypophyll tends to be the dominant part in contrast to other angiosperms. From these, considerable diversity arises. Mature monocot leaves are narrow and linear, forming a sheath
The shallot is a type of onion a botanical variety of the species Allium cepa. The shallot was classified as a separate species, A. ascalonicum, a name now considered a synonym of the accepted name. Its close relatives include the garlic, leek and Chinese onion. Shallots originated in Central or Southwest Asia, travelling from there to India and the eastern Mediterranean; the name "shallot" comes from Ashkelon, an ancient Canaanite city, where people in classical Greek times believed shallots originated. The name shallot is used for the Persian shallot, from the Zagros Mountains in Iran and Iraq; the term shallot is further used for the French red shallot and the French gray shallot or griselle, a species referred to as "true shallot". The name shallot is used for a scallion in New Orleans and among English-speaking people in Quebec while the term French shallot refers to the plant referred to on this page. Anglophone Quebecers and British English speakers stress the second syllable of shallot.
The term eschalot, derived from the French word échalote, can be used to refer to the shallot. Like garlic, shallots are formed in clusters of offsets with a head composed of multiple cloves; the skin colour of shallots can vary from golden brown to gray to rose red, their off-white flesh is tinged with green or magenta. Shallots are extensively cultivated for culinary uses, propagated by offsets. In some regions, the offsets are planted in autumn. In some other regions, the suggested planting time for the principal crop is early spring. In planting, the tops of the bulbs should be kept a little above ground, the soil surrounding the bulbs is drawn away when the roots have taken hold, they come to maturity in summer, although fresh shallots can now be found year-round in supermarkets. Shallots should not be planted on ground manured. In Africa, shallots are grown in the area around Anloga in southeastern Ghana. Shallots suffer damage from leek moth larvae, which mine into the bulbs of the plant.
Shallots are used in cooking. They may be pickled. Finely-sliced deep-fried shallots are used as a condiment in Asian cuisine served with porridge; as a species of Allium, shallots have a milder flavor. Like onions, when sliced, raw shallots release substances that irritate the human eye, resulting in production of tears. Shallots appear to contain more phenols than other members of the onion genus. Fresh shallots can be stored in dry area for six months or longer. Chopped, dried shallots are available. In Europe, the Pikant, Ed's Red types of shallots are the most common. In parts of southern France, the grey type is grown widely. In most Indian cuisines, the distinction between onions and shallots is weak. Indeed, most parts of India use the regional name for onion interchangeably with shallot; the southern regions of India distinguish shallots from onions in recipes more especially the much loved tiny varieties. Shallots pickled in red vinegar are common in many Indian restaurants, served along with sauces and papad on the condiments tray.
Indians use it as a home remedy for sore throats, mixed with jaggery or sugar. In Nepal, shallots are used as one of the ingredients for making momo. In Kashmir shallots are used in preparation of Wazwan Kashmiri cuisine, as they add distinct flavor and prevent curry from becoming black, common with onions. In Iran shallots, called mousir, are used in various ways, the most common being grated shallot mixed into dense yogurt, a combination served in every restaurant when one orders grills or kebabs. Shallots are used to make different types of torshi, a sour Iranian side dish consisting of a variety of vegetables under vinegar, eaten with main dishes in small quantities. Shallot is pickled—called shour in Persian—along with other vegetables to be served as torshi. In Southeast Asian cuisines, such as those of Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines and Brunei, both shallots and garlic are used as elementary spices. Raw shallots can accompany cucumbers when pickled in mild vinegar solution.
They are often chopped finely fried until golden brown, resulting in tiny crispy shallot chips called bawang goreng in Indonesian, which can be bought ready-made from groceries and supermarkets. Shallots enhance the flavor such as fried rice variants. Crispy shallot chips are used in southern Chinese cuisine. In Indonesia, shallots are sometimes made into pickles. Scallion The dictionary definition of shallot at Wiktionary Media related to Allium ascalonicum at Wikimedia Commons
White onion is a cultivar of dry onion, that has a pure white papery skin and a sweet, mild white flesh. Similar to red onions, due to the high sugar content, they have a short shelf life, lasting up to 2 days, or if refrigerated, they can last up to a month; this onion is complementing the flavors of other ingredients. The onion can be sautéed to a dark brown color and served to provide a sweet and sour flavor to other foods. Small white onions used in soups, casseroles or stews, they are known as'boiler onions', they can be added to salads. Known sweet white varieties include. White storage onion types include.
An invasive species is a species, not native to a specific location, that has a tendency to spread to a degree believed to cause damage to the environment, human economy or human health. The criteria for invasive species has been controversial, as divergent perceptions exist among researchers as well as concerns with the subjectivity of the term "invasive". Several alternate usages of the term have been proposed; the term as most used applies to introduced species that adversely affect the habitats and bioregions they invade economically, environmentally, or ecologically. Such invasive species may be either plants or animals and may disrupt by dominating a region, wilderness areas, particular habitats, or wildland–urban interface land from loss of natural controls; this includes non-native invasive plant species labeled as exotic pest plants and invasive exotics growing in native plant communities. It has been used in this sense by government organizations as well as conservation groups such as the International Union for Conservation of Nature and the California Native Plant Society.
The European Union defines "Invasive Alien Species" as those that are, outside their natural distribution area, secondly, threaten biological diversity. The term is used by land managers, researchers, horticulturalists and the public for noxious weeds; the kudzu vine, Andean pampas grass, yellow starthistle are examples. An alternate usage broadens the term to include indigenous or "native" species along with non-native species, that have colonized natural areas. Deer are an example, considered to be overpopulating their native zones and adjacent suburban gardens, by some in the Northeastern and Pacific Coast regions of the United States. Sometimes the term is used to describe a non-native or introduced species that has become widespread. However, not every introduced. A nonadverse example is the common goldfish, found throughout the United States, but achieves high densities. Notable examples of invasive species include European rabbits, grey squirrels, domestic cats and ferrets. Dispersal and subsequent proliferation of species is not an anthropogenic phenomenon.
There are many mechanisms by which species from all Kingdoms have been able to travel across continents in short periods of time such as via floating rafts, or on wind currents. Charles Darwin, a British naturalist, performed many experiments to better understand long distance seed dispersal, was able to germinate seeds from insect frass, faeces of waterfowl, dirt clods on the feet of birds, all of which may have traveled significant distances under their own power, or be blown off course by thousands of miles. Invasion of long-established ecosystems by organisms from distant bio-regions is a natural phenomenon, accelerated via hominid-assisted migration although this has not been adequately directly measured; the definition of "native" is controversial in that there is no way to determine nativity. For example, the ancestors of Equus ferus evolved in North America and radiated to Eurasia before becoming locally extinct. Upon returning to North America in 1493 during their hominid-assisted migration, it is debatable as to whether they were native or exotic to the continent of their evolutionary ancestors.
Scientists include species and ecosystem factors among the mechanisms that, when combined, establish invasiveness in a newly introduced species. While all species compete to survive, invasive species appear to have specific traits or specific combinations of traits that allow them to outcompete native species. In some cases, the competition is about rates of reproduction. In other cases, species interact with each other more directly. Researchers disagree about the usefulness of traits as invasiveness markers. One study found that of a list of invasive and noninvasive species, 86% of the invasive species could be identified from the traits alone. Another study found invasive species tended to have only a small subset of the presumed traits and that many similar traits were found in noninvasive species, requiring other explanations. Common invasive species traits include the following: Fast growth Rapid reproduction High dispersal ability Phenotype plasticity Tolerance of a wide range of environmental conditions Ability to live off of a wide range of food types Association with humans Prior successful invasionsTypically, an introduced species must survive at low population densities before it becomes invasive in a new location.
At low population densities, it can be difficult for the introduced species to reproduce and maintain itself in a new location, so a species might reach a location multiple times before it becomes established. Repeated patterns of human movement, such as ships sailing to and from ports or cars driving up and down highways offer repeated opportunities for establishment. An introduced species might become invasive if it can outcompete native species for resources such as nutrients, physical space, water, or food. If these species evolved under great competition or predation the new environment may host fewer able competitors, allowing the invader to proliferate quickly. Ecosystems which are being used to their fullest capacity by native species can be modeled as zero-sum systems in which any gain for the invader is a loss for the native. However, su
The flowering plants known as angiosperms, Angiospermae or Magnoliophyta, are the most diverse group of land plants, with 64 orders, 416 families 13,164 known genera and c. 369,000 known species. Like gymnosperms, angiosperms are seed-producing plants. However, they are distinguished from gymnosperms by characteristics including flowers, endosperm within the seeds, the production of fruits that contain the seeds. Etymologically, angiosperm means a plant; the term comes from the Greek words sperma. The ancestors of flowering plants diverged from gymnosperms in the Triassic Period, 245 to 202 million years ago, the first flowering plants are known from 160 mya, they diversified extensively during the Early Cretaceous, became widespread by 120 mya, replaced conifers as the dominant trees from 100 to 60 mya. Angiosperms differ from other seed plants in several ways, described in the table below; these distinguishing characteristics taken together have made the angiosperms the most diverse and numerous land plants and the most commercially important group to humans.
Angiosperm stems are made up of seven layers. The amount and complexity of tissue-formation in flowering plants exceeds that of gymnosperms; the vascular bundles of the stem are arranged such that the phloem form concentric rings. In the dicotyledons, the bundles in the young stem are arranged in an open ring, separating a central pith from an outer cortex. In each bundle, separating the xylem and phloem, is a layer of meristem or active formative tissue known as cambium. By the formation of a layer of cambium between the bundles, a complete ring is formed, a regular periodical increase in thickness results from the development of xylem on the inside and phloem on the outside; the soft phloem becomes crushed, but the hard wood persists and forms the bulk of the stem and branches of the woody perennial. Owing to differences in the character of the elements produced at the beginning and end of the season, the wood is marked out in transverse section into concentric rings, one for each season of growth, called annual rings.
Among the monocotyledons, the bundles are more numerous in the young stem and are scattered through the ground tissue. They once formed the stem increases in diameter only in exceptional cases; the characteristic feature of angiosperms is the flower. Flowers show remarkable variation in form and elaboration, provide the most trustworthy external characteristics for establishing relationships among angiosperm species; the function of the flower is to ensure fertilization of the ovule and development of fruit containing seeds. The floral apparatus may arise terminally from the axil of a leaf; as in violets, a flower arises singly in the axil of an ordinary foliage-leaf. More the flower-bearing portion of the plant is distinguished from the foliage-bearing or vegetative portion, forms a more or less elaborate branch-system called an inflorescence. There are two kinds of reproductive cells produced by flowers. Microspores, which will divide to become pollen grains, are the "male" cells and are borne in the stamens.
The "female" cells called megaspores, which will divide to become the egg cell, are contained in the ovule and enclosed in the carpel. The flower may consist only of these parts, as in willow, where each flower comprises only a few stamens or two carpels. Other structures are present and serve to protect the sporophylls and to form an envelope attractive to pollinators; the individual members of these surrounding structures are known as petals. The outer series is green and leaf-like, functions to protect the rest of the flower the bud; the inner series is, in general, white or brightly colored, is more delicate in structure. It functions to attract bird pollinators. Attraction is effected by color and nectar, which may be secreted in some part of the flower; the characteristics that attract pollinators account for the popularity of flowers and flowering plants among humans. While the majority of flowers are perfect or hermaphrodite, flowering plants have developed numerous morphological and physiological mechanisms to reduce or prevent self-fertilization.
Heteromorphic flowers have short carpels and long stamens, or vice versa, so animal pollinators cannot transfer pollen to the pistil. Homomorphic flowers may employ a biochemical mechanism called self-incompatibility to discriminate between self and non-self pollen grains. In other species, the male and female parts are morphologically separated, developing on different flowers; the botanical term "Angiosperm", from the Ancient Greek αγγείον, angeíon and σπέρμα, was coined in the form Angiospermae by Paul Hermann in 1690, as the name of one of his primary divisions of the plant kingdom. This included flowering plants possessing seeds enclosed in capsules, distinguished from his Gymnospermae, or flowering plants with achenial or schizo-carpic fruits, the whole fruit or each of its pieces being here regarded as a seed and naked; the term and its antonym were maintained by Carl Linnaeus with the same sense, but with restricted application, in the names of the orders of his class Didynamia. Its use with any
New Zealand is a sovereign island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses—the North Island, the South Island —and around 600 smaller islands. New Zealand is situated some 2,000 kilometres east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and 1,000 kilometres south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia and Tonga; because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long period of isolation, New Zealand developed a distinct biodiversity of animal and plant life; the country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. New Zealand's capital city is Wellington. Sometime between 1250 and 1300, Polynesians settled in the islands that were named New Zealand and developed a distinctive Māori culture. In 1642, Dutch explorer Abel Tasman became the first European to sight New Zealand. In 1840, representatives of the United Kingdom and Māori chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi, which declared British sovereignty over the islands.
In 1841, New Zealand became a colony within the British Empire and in 1907 it became a dominion. Today, the majority of New Zealand's population of 4.9 million is of European descent. Reflecting this, New Zealand's culture is derived from Māori and early British settlers, with recent broadening arising from increased immigration; the official languages are English, Māori, NZ Sign Language, with English being dominant. A developed country, New Zealand ranks in international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, education, protection of civil liberties, economic freedom. New Zealand underwent major economic changes during the 1980s, which transformed it from a protectionist to a liberalised free-trade economy; the service sector dominates the national economy, followed by the industrial sector, agriculture. Nationally, legislative authority is vested in an elected, unicameral Parliament, while executive political power is exercised by the Cabinet, led by the prime minister Jacinda Ardern.
Queen Elizabeth II is the country's monarch and is represented by a governor-general Dame Patsy Reddy. In addition, New Zealand is organised into 11 regional councils and 67 territorial authorities for local government purposes; the Realm of New Zealand includes Tokelau. New Zealand is a member of the United Nations, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, ASEAN Plus Six, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Pacific Community and the Pacific Islands Forum. Dutch explorer Abel Tasman sighted New Zealand in 1642 and named it Staten Land "in honour of the States General", he wrote, "it is possible that this land joins to the Staten Land but it is uncertain", referring to a landmass of the same name at the southern tip of South America, discovered by Jacob Le Maire in 1616. In 1645, Dutch cartographers renamed the land Nova Zeelandia after the Dutch province of Zeeland. British explorer James Cook subsequently anglicised the name to New Zealand. Aotearoa is the current Māori name for New Zealand.
It is unknown whether Māori had a name for the whole country before the arrival of Europeans, with Aotearoa referring to just the North Island. Māori had several traditional names for the two main islands, including Te Ika-a-Māui for the North Island and Te Waipounamu or Te Waka o Aoraki for the South Island. Early European maps labelled the islands North and South. In 1830, maps began to use North and South to distinguish the two largest islands and by 1907 this was the accepted norm; the New Zealand Geographic Board discovered in 2009 that the names of the North Island and South Island had never been formalised, names and alternative names were formalised in 2013. This set the names as North Island or Te Ika-a-Māui, South Island or Te Waipounamu. For each island, either its English or Māori name can be used. New Zealand was one of the last major landmasses settled by humans. Radiocarbon dating, evidence of deforestation and mitochondrial DNA variability within Māori populations suggest New Zealand was first settled by Eastern Polynesians between 1250 and 1300, concluding a long series of voyages through the southern Pacific islands.
Over the centuries that followed, these settlers developed a distinct culture now known as Māori. The population was divided into iwi and hapū who would sometimes cooperate, sometimes compete and sometimes fight against each other. At some point a group of Māori migrated to Rēkohu, now known as the Chatham Islands, where they developed their distinct Moriori culture; the Moriori population was all but wiped out between 1835 and 1862 because of Taranaki Māori invasion and enslavement in the 1830s, although European diseases contributed. In 1862 only 101 survived, the last known full-blooded Moriori died in 1933; the first Europeans known to have reached New Zeala