Definition: the biochemical pathway a plant uses to gain carbon for growth and reproduction. Plants have evolved three photosynthetic pathways, each in response to distinct environmental conditions, resulting in differences in their ecological patterns of growth and distribution.
Definition: Crassulacean acid metabolism. A carbon fixation pathway that evolved in some plants as an adaptation to arid conditions. In a plant using full CAM, the stomata in the leaves remain shut during the day to reduce evapotranspiration, but open at night to collect carbon dioxide (CO2). The CO2 is stored as the four-carbon acid malate in vacuoles at night, and then in the daytime, the malate is transported to chloroplasts where it is converted back to CO2, which is then used during photosynthesis.
Definition: a plant that produces wood as its structural tissue. Wood is a structural cellular adaptation that allows woody plants to grow from above ground stems year after year, thus making some woody plants the largest and tallest terrestrial plants. Wood is usually primarily composed of xylem cells with cell walls made of cellulose and lignin