Plants, like animals, have eukaryotic cells – meaning they possess a defined nucleus and membrane-bound organelles.
Although they share many common features they have 2 main differences.
Firstly, plant cells have a cell wall that surrounds the cell membrane, whereas animal cells do not. This allows them to form an upright structure without the need for a skeleton. Second, they have two organelles that animal cells lack – chloroplasts and a large central vacuole. These allow them to produce their own food through photosynthesis.
So what’s in side these cells you ask ! Check out the diagram below and the videos in the subsections. Please click on the closed captions button to read transcriptions if video is not narrated)
Cytoplasm – the liquid that everything floats in which allow things to move around as needed. Check out this process called cyclosis (cytoplasmic streaming) – where chloroplasts move around inside the cell to obtain the best possible light
from the sun !
WATCH THE VIDEO :https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFsty-XyLZc
Chloroplasts – a complex sugar producing organelle made of several disk layers loaded with the photosynthetic pigment we call chlorophyll.
WATCH THE VIDEO : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwymX2LxnQs
Nucleus – the library – storage of DNA
WATCH THE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_-6JXLYS-k
Endoplasmic reticulum – the manufacturing center for proteins (with the help from ribosomes) and lipids
Golgi apparatus – hideous name but what it does is store the synthesized proteins and fats in the cell then delivers them where needed like of like a food delivery service.
Ribosomes – the tiny organelle that synthesized proteins by reading the DNA (or actually a simpler copy called RNA)
WATCH THE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=morl5e-jBNk
Mitochondria – the energy maker! Converts raw materials into usable energy.
WATCH THE VIDEO : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=39HTpUG1MwQ
Vacuole – a big storage tank of food and water that also regulates internal pressure – it helps keep plants upright !
Lysosomes !!! MY FAVORITE OF THEM ALL !
These hold digestive enzymes that usually perform the function of cellular waste disposal. They digest worn-out organelles, food particles and foreign bodies in the cell – kind of like an amoeba! BUT if the cell is attacked by a something (disease) they rupture and LIQUIFY everything – the good, the bad and the ugly all at once !
WATCH THE VIDEO :https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gKVDLbUjxSQ
Eye Candy for plant people
Written by Peter Morris BSc.MSc.MBA