How plants absorb minerals
Algae, as well as some aquatic plants, assimilate minerals throughout the body.
Higher plants absorb them from the soil in the form of solutions together with water through root hairs. The number of root hairs is very large, which greatly increases the suction surface of the root.
Movement of minerals and water in the plant
Root hairs work like little pumps. Substances that have entered the root hair move to other cells of the suction zone of the root and then to the root vessels and rise through them under pressure to other plant organs. It is possible to make sure that water and solutions of salt substances move through the vessels of the wood of the stem by experiment. Place the shoot of a linden or other woody plant in water, tinted with ink. After a while, we cut off part of the shoot and split it along. In this case, it will be seen that the wood of the shoot is painted in the color of ink. Consequently, the ink solution moved upward through the vessels of the wood.
The absorption and movement of water with substances dissolved in it occurs in plants due to root pressure.
Root pressure can be observed experimentally. In a houseplant, the stem is cut at a height of 10 cm and a short rubber tube is put on the stump, which connects it to a glass tube. If the soil in the pot is watered with warm water, then the water begins to rise through the tube and flow out of it. After watering the soil with very cold water, water does not flow out of the tube. Thus, water absorption by the root is temperature dependent. Cold water is poorly absorbed by the roots.
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