Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Plant Cell Structure (Plant Bio Lab 2)

We got to examine some basic structures of plant cells for out Botany (Plant Biology) lab this week.

 1) This is a thin section of a cork, showing dead cells with nothing but cell walls.  These are what Robert Hooke first saw and named "cells" in 1665.

2)  Onion.  First the abaxial (inner) side of onion, unstained, then stained.

Adaxial side of the onion is much better, first the unstained, then stained:

3) Onion root tip stained for mitochondria:

The brown outlines are stained cell walls, the large dark dots are nuclei and the small dark speckles are mitochondria

4) Onion root tip showing mitosis.  I have a good past post of this already you can view here.

5) Colleus stem cs.  Notice pith and cortex, thin primary cell walls, large vacuoles, and intercellular air spaces.  This is not a great picture, sorry to my classmates on that one.

6) Zamia blepharoplast

Here's an orientation of the entire Zamia ovule.  The part labeled 5 is where we will zoom in.
Now we can begin to see the blepharoplast (circled) which is at the end of the pollen tube (yellow arrow)
Zoomed in on the blepharoplast
 7) Elodea / water weed.  First a normal view, then after adding salt so we can see the plasmolized cells to see the cytoplasm better.

Normal Elodea cells.  Can see concentrations of chloroplasts (green specs) congregating around the edges of each cell
Now much of the vacuole volue is lost and more of the cytoplasm is visible, as well as the chloroplasts more evenly distributed

8) Potato, amyloplasts can be seen on the post about plastids.

9) Carrot & Tomato are seen really well in the post about plastids (chromoplasts), and here are a couple other goodies:

Carrot- the little orange speckles are the chromoplasts.

Tomato - this shows a really good view of the cell walls (I am guessing thick secondary cell walls with lots of plasmodesmata?  Don't quote me on that yet.)

Tomato - GREAT view on the right of the tomato flesh with red speckles (chromoplasts).  The mass of orange cells on the left is the skin (epidermis).

10) Beet - notice the pigment is in the vacuole rather than chromoplasts, so it is much more obvious.

Here is the beet, the pigment is rather obvious

Now that salt has been added, you can see the pigmented vacuoles have shrunk quite a bit
The little pink circles are pigment-filled vacuoles floating around all by themselves (after we added sugar and mashed the beat to a pulp)

The end!

Stay curious,


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