Dictionary > Trichome

Trichome

Definition
noun, plural: trichomes
(botany) An outgrowth (hair-like or scale-like) from the epidermal cell
(microbiology) A hair-like structure on the surface of certain microscopic organisms
Supplement
The term trichome comes from the Greek trikhōma, which in turn is from trikhoun (meaning “to cover with hair”) or from thrix (meaning “hair”). It is used to generally pertain to a hair- or bristle-like outgrowth or extension on the cell surface. Thus, it may pertain to the hair-like outgrowth on the surface of the cells of certain microorganisms, algae, and plant cells. The term trichome is more commonly used in plants where it is used to refer to any of the various outgrowths on the epidermal cells. Many of these outgrowths are hair-like, others are scale-like. Some of them may be glandular, secreting oils and certain substances.
Trichomes have various functions. They curb the rate of transpiration (i.e. the loss of water through the stomata), reduce the effect of heat from sunlight (such as by reflecting solar radiation thereby lowering plant temperature), confer a defense mechanism against insects and other small herbivores, and protect inner tissues from mechanical injuries.
Botanists use the terms pubescent and glabrous to describe the surface of plant parts. In particular, a plant organ with trichomes is described as pubescent whereas one lacking trichomes is described as glabrous.
See also:

Related form(s):

  • trichomic (adjective, of, pertaining to, or relating to a trichome)


  • You will also like...

    green leaf - close up view
    Leaves

    Leaves are the major photosynthetic organ of a plant. Apart from that, they are also crucial to water movement. In this ..

    Non-Mendelian Inheritance
    Non-Mendelian Inheritance

    In this tutorial, find out more about certain types of inheritance that does not follow the Mendelian inheritance patter..

    Freshwater lake ecosystem
    Freshwater Producers and Consumers

    Freshwater ecosystem is comprised of four major constituents, namely elements and compounds, plants, consumers, and deco..

    Bryophytes
    Bryophytes

    Bryophytes (nonvascular plants) are a plant group characterized by lacking vascular tissues. They include the mosses, th..

    Community Patterns

    Learn about community patterns and the ecological factors influencing these patterns. Revisit some of the ecosystems you..

    Disturbance on a still water
    Abiotic Factors – Water Conditions

    A still body of water may be disturbed by a variety of factors. One of them is wind. In fact, it is considered as the pr..

    Related Articles...

    No related articles found

    See all Related Topics