A cactus can be defined in one too many ways. Perhaps, the most common and easiest definition would be somewhere along the lines of a cactus being made up of a thick stem and sharp spines. But, is a cactus a plant?
The simple answer is yes. A cactus is actually a plant that has at least 1700 different species. It is a whole plant which is made up of a stem, flowers and roots.
Yes, a cactus is in fact a plant. It consists of plant features such as a stem, flowers and roots.
When it comes to looking into the heart of the matter, we must look at the baseline first. The main question that arises is, what even is a plant?
A plant is a living thing that has common features like stems, roots, leaves and flowers. Plants come in a variety of different shapes and sizes. Most plants are green since they contain a substance called chlorophyll by which they make food in a process called photosynthesis.
Over 200, 000 plant species exist in the world. Plants make their own food instead of relying on other living things. The most important function of a plant is producing oxygen for the rest of the living species of this world.
A cactus ticks off all the boxes when it comes to being a plant. It is made up of a thick stem, roots and flowers. The thick stem of a cactus is the most prominent part that meets the eyes of many onlookers.
It produces seeds as well just like most plants do. New plants can be made from old leaves. A cactus also makes its own food just like all plants do. This process takes place in the stem where water is stored as well.
Most plants produce oxygen and so does the cactus. You might be interested to know that some cacti species even purify the air. One of these includes the Christmas cactus.
A cactus is in fact a flowering plant. All cacti bloom at least once a year. They produce brightly colored flowers. Some of these include the Spider cactus, Mammillaria cactus, Twin-spine cactus and the Balloon cactus.
Most common flower colors that bloom on cacti are yellow, pink and red. These flowers vary in shape and size. Most cacti bloom during the summer when all the conditions such as light, water and soil type are right.
Let us look at the different features that help us identify a plant. These are the following:
All plants have roots that are fixed to the ground for support and balance. These roots help absorb nutrients from the soil as well. These nutrients are often needed by the plant to grow into a healthy adult plant.
Roots are also best known for retaining water. They even store food which can later be used up by a plant during an emergency. Roots are often covered by a layer called the root cap. This helps prevent water loss.
Every plant has a stem that is used to store food and water. The stem of a plant holds the branches and leaves. It deals with generating new plant tissue as well if the plant is damaged.
It is mainly concerned with transporting water to other parts of the plant. The stem can look very different across plant species. In cacti, it is a very hard and thick part which stores water.
Most plants have distinct leaves. The leaves of the plant make food by absorbing enough sunlight during the day. The leaves act as a medium for the flow of gases into the plant.
Leaves come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They come in different colors as well. Some plants even produce red and yellow leaves. Trees have a greater variety of leaves such as the Purple Smoke tree.
Most plants produce flowers during the spring and summer. Flowers are the reproductive parts of a plant. They produce seeds after a process called pollination.
All flowering plants produce flowers that come in a range of colors and patterns. Some plants even bloom flowers when they reach a mature stage in their lifecycle such as after 30 years.
We have discussed whether or not a cactus is a plant. The simple answer is yes. A cactus is definitely a plant since it consists of a stem, roots and flowers.
If you liked reading about cacti, you might be interested to look into the oldest cactus in the world.
Do you think the Saguaro cactus is the only oldest species out there? Well, here are two more of the oldest cacti!
My name is Kelly and I'm the the founder of Easy Succulents! I'm fascinated by this wonderful plants and I want to share with the world everything I know about them!
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