Botany/Grasses laboratory

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Chapter 16. Laboratory Exercises: Grasses

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As you have already seen, the purpose of a laboratory exercise is to give the student hands-on experience with botanical methods and materials. To do this laboratory exercise, although not absolutely necessary (photos are provided), you should collect material from outside—in this case, one or more species of grasses—to examine as you read the text. You should easily identify a grass plant, but you will want to collect a plant (we call this a specimen) that is in flower. Try to collect a whole specimen—that's correct, roots and all. A lawn grass may not be the best choice, but if you can find a tuft with a flower head, then that will suffice. It is best to work from fresh material, so if it be the case that it is the dead of winter, we suggest you may want to repeat this lab late in the spring or summer. However, we provide here a scanned specimen that you can examine very closely by down-loading the high resolution version (click on the photo, then follow link at bottom of image).

Grass plant specimen
Grass plant specimen

<== A collected specimen (grass) folded over and scanned to display all of a culm. Note that the culm terminates in an inflorescence and is actually one of two stems—the other, with but one leaf, is just elongating—arising at a prominent node along a stolon. Several roots are starting to form at the same node.

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