The transport systems in plants are quite different than the circulatory system found in vertebrates. Vascular plants have two transport systems, one to move water (and the minerals dissolved in it) from the roots to the leaves and the other to move organic compounds (mainly sucrose) from the "source" to the "sink". The cells responsible for long-range water transport have already been studied in Lab 7: the tracheids and vessel elements found in xylem. The cells responsible for long-range transport of organic compounds are found in the phloem.

The hierarchial nomenclature used in plant anatomy is often confusing, and is therefore outlined to the right. Click here to get table. Note that both xylem and phloem tissues may also contain cell types that do not function in transport, such as the phloem fibers observed in Lab 7.

In this laboratory you will:

1. confirm the path of water movement between the uptake by root hairs and the loss through stomata
2. perform an experiment that suggests a mechanism for this movement
3. examine prepared slides to study the cellular structures in more detail

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