By Cat Gina Cole
AXIS: A plant stem; more generally the line of growth of a stem or any of its branching parts that carry flowers, other branches or leaves.
AXIL: The upper angle between a bract, and the stem on which it grows, hence axillary flower or bud. See bract.
ACHENE: A small dry, nut-like, one seeded fruit that does not split open when ripe to release the seed, it can be winged like maple seeds, or caraway seeds.
ASCENDING: Something that is curving upwards.
BASAL: These are the leaves growing at the base of a stem.
BIPINNATE: A leaf that is twice pinnate i.e., a pinnately divided leaf whose leaflets are themselves pinnately divided. See Pinnate below.
BRACT: A small leaf or scale like structure from the axil of which a flower often rises.
COMPOUND LEAF: A leaf divided into two or more leaflets; applied to a leaf or flower cluster with a branched main axis.
DESIDUOUS; Are trees and shrubs that shed leaves at the end of the growing season.
DIVIDED: Separated towards the mid rib or base.
ELIPTICAL: leaves that are oval and somewhat pointed at each end.
FEATHERY: Leaves that are cut into many fine segments.
FURROWED: Leaves or stems with longitudinal channels or grooves.
GLOBOSE: Items that are spherical. This term is usually applied to a fruit or seed.
LATTERAL: Alongside or situated at the side.
LEAF AXIL: A leave axil is situated between the leaf and the stem.
LEAFLET: Is a subdivision of a compound leaf.
LINEAR: Leaves that are long and narrow, and almost parallel sided.
LINEAR- LANCEOLATE: Leaves that are long and narrow but tapering to a point at the tip.
LOBED: Leaves that are divided toward the mid-rib but not into separate leaflets, each division is rounded at the apex, similar to an oak leaf.
LATEX: A milky fluid produced by several kinds of plants such as poppy, milk weed, or rubber plant.
MARGIN: The outside edge of leaf or seed.
MID-RIB: The central vein of a leaf, usually thickened and conspicuous.
NODE: A point on a stem where one or more leaves grow or have grown; the part of the stem between the nodes is called an internode.
OBOVATE: Describes a leaf that is oval, with the end farthest from the stalk being wider than the end attached to the stem; egg shaped, also called OVATE.
OPPOSITE: Leaves growing in pairs at the same level on opposite sides of the stem.
PALMATE: Describes a leaf that has the shape of a hand, with fingers radiating from the palm; comprising more than three leaflets arising from the same point, like a pot leaf.
PETIOLE: The stalk of the leaf.
PINNATE: Leaves that have the structure of a feather, in that similar parts occur on opposite sides of an axis. A pinnate leaf is divided into numerous leaflets that grow along either side of the leaf stalk and have their own stalk which is a petiole.
RAY FLOWER: A flower with petals that edge a central disc, such as sunflowers and daisies.
RHIZOME: A creeping, usually horizontal underground storage stem, which sends up leafy shoots each season, like ferns and some grasses.
SESSILE: A stalk-less flower or leaf that has no petiole.
SIMPLE: Leaves not divided into leaflets of stems and are unbranched.
SPREADING: Plant parts that are standing out horizontally or at a wide angle from the stem.
SHEATH: The lower part of the leaf enveloping the stem or stalk, similar to the sheath on a green salad onion.
TERMINAL: A leaf at the end of a stalk or stem or branch that limits further growth on that stem.
UMBEL: An umbrella- shaped flower in which all the flowers and the secondary umbels are borne on stalks(rays) which are equal length and arise from a common point, like hemlock and wild carrot.
VEIN: The passageway for water and nutrients to travel to and from a leaf, it is also the mechanical support system.
WING: The lateral petals in certain flowers like the pea family or the membranous outgrowth on the sides of certain seeds and stems.