Revision Notes

R2101 Exam Question – Seed Structure and Germination

R2101 – Question from Monday 13 February 2012

Q.6. a) Name TWO functions of the fruit in plant reproduction. (2)

b) Label EACH of the following features in the diagram below: (6)

iii)aleurone layer

L.S. Zea mays seed

c)Identify TWO differences between seeds of Zea mays (maize) and Vicia faba (broad bean).

Sample answers

Q.6.a. Two functions of fruit are 1) to protect the seed from damage by severe weather or pests. 2) to aid in dispersal, for instance, a berry is attractive food for birds – a bird eats the fruit and the seed, later excreting the seed in a new location.

The examiners note that “The best answers were from those candidates who qualified their answers, e.g. stating that a fruit protects the seed from damage or weather…”


6.c. Zea mays has one cotyledon whereas Vicia faba has one. Zea mays has an endosperm, whereas Vicia faba has a food store inside the cotyledons. Vicia faba has no aleurone layer or coleoptile and may be defined as a true seed, whereas Zea mays is a fruit.

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