The key difference between stem tendril and leaf tendril is that stem tendril is a modified stem while leaf tendril is a modified leaf, leaflet or a leaf part.
Tendril is a modified stem, leaf or petiole that is thread-like in shape. Tendrils mainly provide support for climbing parts. They are also useful in attachment and cellular invasion. Tendrils twine around suitable hosts by sensing touch. In other words, when tendrils come into contact with an object for a certain time period, they usually curl around it. Tendrils do not have a lamina or a blade. But, they are green in colour and can photosynthesize. Moreover, tendrils are sensitive to chemicals. This ability helps them to find the direction of growth. Stem tendrils and leaf tendrils are seen in many climbing plants.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Stem Tendril
3. What is Leaf Tendril
4. Similarities Between Stem Tendril and Leaf Tendril
5. Side by Side Comparison – Stem Tendril vs Leaf Tendril in Tabular Form
What is Stem Tendril?
Stem tendril is a modified or specialized stem or terminal bud. The growth of stem tendrils occurs through the help of axillary buds. Stem tendrils wind themselves around objects in order to stabilise the upward growing plant.
Stem tendrils are commonly seen in passion fruits and grape wine. Stem tendrils can be branched or unbranched. There may also be scale leaves on the stem tendrils. Moreover, there are four types of stem tendrils as axillary, extra-axillary, leaf opposed and floral bud or inflorescence tendrils.
What is Leaf Tendril?
Leaf tendril is another type of tendril that is formed from an entire leaf. Moreover, leaf tendrils can be formed from modified leaflets, leaf tips, or leaf stipules as well. In some plants such as sweet pea and vicia, leaf axis terminates in a tendril in order to facilitate climbing. In Flame Lily, the leaf tip of the blade elongates into a tendril for the support of the plant.
Moreover, in the garden pea, the terminal leaflet of the compound leaf modifies into a tendril while in some plants, several leaflets of the compound leaf convert into tendrils. In some other plants, leaf petiole modifies into a tendril for the clinging purpose.
What are the Similarities Between Stem Tendril and Leaf Tendril?
- Stem tendril and leaf tendril are two types of tendrils.
- Both types are sensitive to touch.
- They aid in attachment and support climbing parts.
- In fact, they are specialized lateral organs strongly possessing a twining tendency.
- They originate as a modification of a major plant part.
- Furthermore, they are green in colour and are able to photosynthesize.
What is the Difference Between Stem Tendril and Leaf Tendril?
Stem tendril and leaf tendril are two types of tendrils found in climbing plants. Stem tendril is a modified stem or a stem branch. In contrast, leaf tendril is a modified leaf, leaflet or leaf part. So, this is the key difference between stem tendril and leaf tendril. Stem tendril is composed of stem tissues while leaf tendril is composed of leaf tissues.
Below infographic tabulates the difference between stem tendril and leaf tendril.
Summary – Stem Tendril vs Leaf Tendril
Tendril is a slender, coiling plant part which is often a modified leaf, leaf part or stem. It is utilized by climbing plants for support and attachment. Moreover, tendrils support the stem of climbing plants by clinging to or winding around an object. Stem tendril is a modified terminal bud while leaf tendril is a modified leaf or leaflets or leaf parts. So, this is the key difference between stem tendril and leaf tendril.
1. “Tendril.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 23 Aug. 2016, Available here.
2. “Modifications of Aerial Stems: 6 Types: Plants.” Biology Discussion, 12 Dec. 2016, Available here.
1. “Passion Flower Tendrils Wild Tendrils Climber Vine” (CC0) via Max Pixel
2. “NRCSHI07025 – Hawaii (716084)(NRCS Photo Gallery)” By Scott Bauer / Photo courtesy of USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia