Portal:Plants

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Plants are a major group of life forms and include familiar organisms such as trees, herbs, shrubs, grasses, vines, ferns, mosses, and green algae. About 350,000 species of plants, defined as seed plants, bryophytes, ferns and fern allies, are estimated to exist currently. As of 2004, some 287,655 species had been identified, of which 258,650 are flowering and 15,000 bryophytes. Green plants, sometimes called metaphytes, obtain most of their energy from sunlight via a process called photosynthesis.

Aristotle divided all living things between plants (which generally do not move), and animals (which often are mobile to catch their food). In Linnaeus' system, these became the Kingdoms Vegetabilia (later Metaphyta or Plantae) and Animalia (also called Metazoa). Since then, it has become clear that the Plantae as originally defined included several unrelated groups, and the fungi and several groups of algae were removed to new kingdoms. However, these are still often considered plants in many contexts, both technical and popular. Indeed, an attempt to perfectly match "plant" with a single taxon is problematic, because for most people the term plant is only vaguely related to the phylogenic concepts on which modern taxonomy and systematics are based.

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Saffron
Saffron is a spice derived from the flower of the saffron crocus (Crocus sativus), a species of crocus in the family Iridaceae. The flower has three stigmas, which are the distal ends of the plant's carpels. Together with its style, the stalk connecting the stigmas to the rest of the plant, these components are often dried and used in cooking as a seasoning and colouring agent. Saffron, which has for decades been the world's most expensive spice by weight, is native to Southwest Asia. Saffron is characterised by a bitter taste and an iodoform- or hay-like fragrance; these are caused by the chemicals picrocrocin and safranal. It also contains a carotenoid dye, crocin, that gives food a rich golden-yellow hue. These traits make saffron a much-sought ingredient in many foods worldwide. Saffron also has medicinal applications. The domesticated saffron crocus C. sativus is an autumn-flowering perennial plant unknown in the wild, and is a sterile triploid mutant of the eastern Mediterranean autumn-flowering Crocus cartwrightianus. According to botanical research, C. cartwrightianus originated in Crete, not—as was once generally believed—in Central Asia. The saffron crocus resulted when C. cartwrightianus was subjected to extensive artificial selection by growers who desired elongated stigmas. Being sterile, the saffron crocus's purple flowers fail to produce viable seeds—thus, reproduction is dependent on human assistance: the corms (underground bulb-like starch-storing organs) must be manually dug up, broken apart, and replanted. A corm survives for only one season, reproducing via division into up to ten "cormlets" that eventually give rise to new plants. The corms are small brown globules up to 4.5 centimetres (1.8 in) in diameter and are shrouded in a dense mat of parallel fibers.

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Persicaria capitata (Polygonaceae)
Cscr-featured.svg Credit: JJ Harrison

Persicaria capitata (Pink Knotweed, Japanese Knotweed or Pink bubble persicaria) is an ornamental plant of the genus Persicaria in the family Polygonaceae. The spikes are 5–10 millimetres (0.2–0.4 in) long and 5–7 mm (0.20–0.28 in) in diameter. P. capitata is a prostrate herb, native of Asia, and naturalised in parts of Australia.

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  1. Describe all families, genera and species of the kingdom Plantae.
  2. For species, describe botanical properties, distribution, multiplication, usage (medicine, food, etc.), botanical history, cultivation information.
  3. Develop and implement a robust method of naming plant article for the ease of navigation and searching for Wikipedia users.
  4. Maintain Category:Plants and its subcategories.

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