Plant leaf trichome (Hibiscus sp.), SEM

Plant leaf trichome (Hibiscus sp.), SEM

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Credit: DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Hibiscus sp, coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM). leaf (underside) with an elaborate stellate trichome (hair) on a vein. Plant trichomes are fine epidermal outgrowths that have diverse structure and function. Often they are used for protection. Examples are hairs, glandular hairs, scales, and papillae. A common type of trichome is a hair. Plant hairs may be unicellular or multicellular, branched or unbranched. Multicellular hairs may have one or several layers of cells. Branched hairs can be dendritic (tree-like), tufted, or stellate (star-shaped) such as in the hibiscus plant. Magnification: x36 when shortest axis printed at 25 millimetres.

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