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Question 8
Describe the various ways by which seeds are dispersed.


Solution

Following are the various ways by which seeds are dispersed. 

(a) Dispersal by Wind: Seeds of some plants are light-weight and some have hair-like or wing-like structures present on them. Such seeds can be carried along with the wind and are thus dispersed by wind. Example: Dandelion, maple, drumstick, etc. 

(b) Dispersal by Water: Dispersal by water takes place in some aquatic plants and in some plants that grow near water bodies. Seeds of water lily float and thus get dispersed by water. The coconut seed has a tough fibrous covering which has plenty of air inside. This helps the coconut seeds in floating on water.

(c) Dispersal by Animals: Some seeds have spine-like structures on them. They get stuck in the fur of animals and thus get spread to different places. Examples; Beggar tick, Xanthium, etc. Some seeds are swallowed by birds and animals along with fruits. These seeds get dispersed with bird or animal droppings.
 
(d) Dispersal by Bursting:
Some fruits burst open when they mature. The force of bursting is enough to spread the seeds. Examples; Ladies finger, castor, balsam, etc. 

(e)  Dispersal by Humans: Human beings also help in dispersal of seeds, especially during farming.

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