DR KEITH WHEELER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR KEITH WHEELER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pincushion hakea leaf. Light micrograph of a transverse section through the leaf of a pincushion hakea (Hakea laurina) plant. This is a drought plant (xerophyte). Xerophytes have evolved an anatomy that cuts down water loss through transpiration. The leaf is needle-shaped to reduce the area for water loss. The epidermis consists of thick-walled cells covered in a thick cuticle (light-pink). The stomata (white and yellow) are sunken to trap moist air. The vascular bundles (dense patches, centre) are surrounded by a ring of supportive fibres (green), and inside the fibres are the phloem (oval, light green) and xylem (dark green and red). Magnification: x103 when printed 10 centimetres wide.
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