Seed Development in Corn -- A Monocot


In corn and other monocots, the single cotyledon, known as the scutellum, absorbs food reserves from the endosperm. The coleoptile and coleorhiza are sheaths that enclose the apical meristem of the shoot and root respectively. After the root emerges the seed sends out its coleoptile and finally a pair of true leaves (plumules) emerge. (See below)

"The Corn embryo axis undergoes a considerable degree of differentation early in its formation. The epicotyl takes the form of a well-developed multilayered plumule -- the hypocotyl giving rise to a large, robust embryonic root (radicle)

The plumules are protected by a sheath of cells called the coleoptile, while the radicle is covered by a similar structure called the coleorhiza.

The monocot cotyledon -- scutellum is used for food storage and digestion. It does not absorb nutrients from the endosperm.