Clade of seed plants that produce flowers / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Flowering plants are plants that bear flowers and fruits, and form the clade Angiospermae (/ˌændʒiəˈspərmiː/), commonly called angiosperms. They include insect-pollinated herbs such as buttercups, pond plants such as water lilies, wind-pollinated grasses, and trees such as apple and oak. The term "angiosperm" is derived from the Greek words ἀγγεῖον /angeion ('container, vessel') and σπέρμα / sperma ('seed'), meaning that the seeds are enclosed within a fruit. They are by far the most diverse group of land plants with 64 orders, 416 families, approximately 13,000 known genera and 300,000 known species. Angiosperms were formerly called Magnoliophyta (/mæɡˌnoʊliˈɒfətə, -əˈfaɪtə/).
|Groups (APG IV)|
Angiosperms are distinguished from the other seed-producing plants, the gymnosperms, by having flowers, xylem consisting of vessel elements instead of tracheids, endosperm within their seeds, and fruits that completely envelop the seeds.
The ancestors of flowering plants diverged from the common ancestor of all living gymnosperms before the end of the Carboniferous, over 300 million years ago, but the earliest angiosperm fossils are in the form of pollen around 134 million years ago during the Early Cretaceous. Over the course of the Cretaceous, angiosperms diversified explosively, becoming the dominant group of plants across the planet by the end of the period, corresponding with the decline and extinction of previously widespread gymnosperm groups.