Explore BrainMass

Adaptations in orchids

Structural modifications to the orchid from the angiosperm Monocot family to leaves, roots, stems, or flowers that result in adaptive functions.
How does this plant through the modifications help the slant to live and survive in its environment?

© BrainMass Inc. brainmass.com July 22, 2018, 8:19 pm ad1c9bdddf

Solution Preview

In the tropical rainforest, organisms are constantly competing for resources. In order to survive a plant must find a way to either outcompete another species or find a new niche. Orchids live in the canopy, rather than on the ground. They represent a group of plants called epiphytes.

Epiphytes are plants that grow on another plant without stealing nutrients like parasites. Since orchids live high up in the canopy on trees,they are able to access more sunlight than the plants that live lower down in the canopy, or on the rainforest floor. Thus avoiding or diminishing the competition by other species for sunlight.

Orchids also have specialized structures, such as a specialized root system, and other specialized structures such as leaves that are extremely efficient at extracting moisture from the air, some even have adventitous ( aerial, above ground) roots for this ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses several modifications of Orchids that have enabled the plant to survive and reproduce in its environment.