Water lily stem, light micrograph

Water lily stem, light micrograph


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Polarised light micrograph of a transverse section of a water lily (Nymphae alba) stem showing idioblasts. Idioblasts are formed from crystals of calcium oxylate. They may function to store excess calcium which would otherwise be toxic to the plant. Some botanists think that they may act as lenses and focus sunlight on to the chloroplasts. Magnification: x68 at 10cm wide.

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