'Home Made' Photographs of 'Most' Plant Types . . .
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Bulbs, Corms and Rhizomes are all forms of modified plant stems - mostly herbaceous plants and virtually all from the Monocotyledons, plants that have only one seed leaf (cotyledon), like grasses, bananas and orchids. On the left is the bulb, Fritillaria imperialis 'Aurora', the Crown Imperial. There are examples of Corms and Rhizomes above.
Tubers on the other hand are either modified stems (potato) or modified roots, (Dahlia). They belong to the largest plant group the broad-leaved plants with two seed-leaves, the Dicotyledons, and are included in the next section
Stem Tuber: Stem tubers generally start off as enlargements of the hypocotyl section of a seedling but also sometimes include the first node or two of the epicotyl and the upper section of the root. The stem tuber has a vertical orientation with one or a few vegetative buds on the top and fibrous roots produced on the bottom from a basal section, typically the stem tuber has an oblong rounded shape.
Tuberous Begonia and Cyclamen are commonly grown stem tubers. Mignonette vine (Anredera cordifolia) produces aerial stem tubers on 12-to-25-foot-tall (3.7 to 7.6 m) vines, the tubers fall to the ground and grow. Plectranthus esculentus of the mint family Lamiaceae, produces tuberous underground organs from the base of the stem, weighing up to 1.8 kg per tuber, forming from axillary buds producing short stolons that grow into tubers.
Root Tuber: A tuberous root or storage root, is a modified lateral root, enlarged to function as a storage organ. The enlarged area of the root-tuber, or storage root, can be produced at the end or middle of a root or involve the entire root. It is thus different in origin but similar in function and appearance to a stem tuber. Examples of plants with notable tuberous roots include Dahlia, Cassava, Yam and the Sweet Potato, Ipomoea batatas, - which is where we get our name 'potato' from, even though it is a completely different family of plants. The Sweet Potato (photo below) is in the Convolvulaceae, the Bindweed or Morning Glory Family, and our Potato, Solanum tuberosum, is in the Solanaceae, the Tomato, Petunia and Deadly Nightshade Family!