Definition of Hydrophytes

Plants those are well adapted to survive in or on the water logged areas.
For Example: Lotus, Sea weeds, Pistia, Water lily

More About Hydrophytes

  • Hydrophytes are also known as ‘water plants’
  • The hydrophytes are constantly incontact with water and hence it is not necessary for them to conserve or store water in any part of the plant
  • Hydrophytes unlike Xerophytes that try to conserve every bit of water, have specialised adaptation for surviving in water or at the water surface
  • Hydrophytes are morphologically,anatomically and physiologically adapted to the aquatic environment
  • The main adaptation is the presence of the aerenchyma tissue, filled with air spaces for buoyancy in the water
  • Hydrophytes vary among the habitat in terms of the quality of water that ranges between fresh water, brackish water, and marine water
  • The whole plant is covered with mucilage
  • The hydrophytic plants can either be submerged or float or amphibious for a part of or throughout their life cycle
  • The roots may be poorly developed as in Hydrilla and Vallisneria or altogether lacking as in Utricularia
  • If present they are generally fibrous roots that are sparsely branched or unbranched
  • Root hairs are poorly developed in Hydrophytes
  • The stem may be long , slender , spongy and flexible as in Hydrilla or horizontal and floating as in Eichornia
  • The leaves in the floating plants are smooth shinning and coated with wax to protect the leaf from water clogging and prevent wilting
  • The leaves of the submerged plants are long and narrow, thin ribbon shaped. Common example is Vallisneria
  • In floating plants the stomata are present in the upper epidermis of the leaves for gaseous exchange, whereas stomata are absent in submerged plants
  • The vascular bundles are reduced in Hydrophytes
  • Physiologically the osmotic concentrations of the cell sap are low and the respiratory gases are retained in the gas chambers for future use
  • Chlorophyll is present in all the tissues of the hydrophytes
  • Hygrophytes: These are plants that constantly grow in moist and shady places., e.g., hill and forests. Examples are ferns, begonias and grasses