Monday, September 3, 2012

Taxonomy of Non-Seed Vascular Plants

Today's post will take a look at the general taxonomy of another group of plants in the vascular plant subkingdom -- the non-seed vascular plants.  The seed plants, the angiosperms and gymnosperms, having already been covered earlier, it is high time we move to the non-seed plants!  These plants reproduce through alternation of generations and make use of spores, rather than the seeds that we might usually associate with plants.

The most famous group of non-seed vascular plants, by far, is that of the Ferns.  Certainly, too, many folks are rather familiar with Horsetails, as well.

File:Equisetum x moorei3.JPGFile:Ferns at melb botanical gardens.jpgFile:Lycopodium dendroideum.JPG
From left to right: Horsetails, Ferns, and Ground Pine (a type of Club-Moss or Lycopod)

So, without further ado, here is an overview of the non-seed vascular plants, and please know that this is not an exhaustive list:

Kingdom Plantae
Subkingdom Tracheobionta [Vascular Plants]

Division Equisetophyta [Horsetails]
·         Class Equisetopsida or Sphenopsida
o   Order Equisetales
§  Family Equisetaceae [Horsetail family]

Division Lycopodiophyta [Lycopods]
·         Class Lycopodiopsida
o   Order Isoetales
§  Family Isoetaceae [Quillwort family]
o   Order Lycopodiales
§  Family Lycopodiaceae [Club-moss family]
o   Order Selaginellales
§  Family Selaginellaceae [Spike-moss family]

Division Psilophyta [Whisk-ferns]
·         Class Psilopsida
o   Order Psilotales
§  Family Psilotaceae [Whisk-fern family]

Division Pteridophyta [Ferns]
·         Class Filicopsida
o   Order Hydropteridales [Water Ferns, 3 families]
o   Order Marattiales
§  Family Marattiaceae [Vessel Fern family]
o   Order Ophioglossales
§  Family Ophioglossaceae [Adder’s-tongue family]
o   Order Polypodiales
§  Family Aspleniaceae [Spleenwort family]
§  Family Cyatheaceae [Tree Fern family]
§  Family Dennstaedtiaceae [Bracken Fern family]
§  Family Dryopteridaceae [Wood Fern family]
§  Family Hymenophyllaceae [Filmy Fern family]
§  Family Osmundaceae [Royal Fern family]
§  Family Polypodiaceae [Polypody family]
§  Family Pteridaceae [Maidenhair Fern family]
§  Family Schizaeaceae [Curly-grass family]
§  Family Thelypteridaceae [Marsh Fern family]

Nota bene: taxonomy is always a matter of debate and discussion – you may find different arrangements than those listed here.

Source: United States Department of Agriculture:

Live well!

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