Asexual Plant Reproduction Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:04 Asexual Reproduction
  • 0:38 Tubers
  • 1:06 Rhizomes & Runners
  • 1:56 Bulbs
  • 2:25 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Lindsey Spencer

Lindsey has taught regular and special educations students in grades 1-8 since 2009 and has a master's degree in special education.

In this lesson, you will learn what plant asexual reproduction is and how it works. We will look at examples of familiar foods and other plants that reproduce asexually.

Asexual Reproduction

Have you ever lost a potato under a cabinet and, when you found it, discovered that it had little sprouts all over it? That potato isn't good to eat anymore, but it would be good for making more potatoes. Potatoes are one example of plants that reproduce through asexual reproduction.

Normally plants need two parents. With asexual reproduction, there is only one parent plant. The new plants are clones of the parent plant; they are exactly the same. Plants that reproduce asexually don't need pollen to make new plants.

So how does this work? There are a couple different ways plants reproduce asexually.

Tubers

Tubers are a way some plants reproduce asexually. These are thick or swollen plant parts that serve as a food reserve. We already talked about one tuber: potatoes! Sweet potatoes and yams are other examples of tubers.

When potatoes start to reproduce, they begin to sprout. The sprout will push up through soil and start to grow leaves. The leaves collect energy from the sun. The plant uses some of the energy, and all the extra energy that the leaves collect is stored in new potatoes.

Rhizomes & Runners

Rhizomes grow underground and are actually the stem of a plant. When a plant reproduces with rhizomes, the rhizome grows sideways underground. It will send shoots and new plants up through the soil. Ginger, some ferns, asparagus, and bamboo grow from rhizomes.

Plants can also reproduce with runners, where the original plant sends out a skinny stem that rests on the ground and keeps growing longer. As the runner grows, some parts will start to sprout and make plantlets, or baby plants. Those plantlets will grow roots in the soil, and new plants will start to grow.

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