Plant Habit

Definition - What does Plant Habit mean?

Plant habit is a term defining a plant’s overall shape and form. It covers the plant’s development, the length of the stem, its branching pattern, density, and the texture of its foliage. The term plant habit typically includes all of the plant species' unique characteristics that it utilizes to thrive and survive.

A plant’s habit indicates its ability to adapt to its evolving environment. It also reveals if the plant is classified as a woody or herbaceous plant type.

MaximumYield explains Plant Habit

Plant habit is also called plant life form. It is a process that all plants undergo that is a form of evolutionary adaption. It belies the plant’s ability to change, survive, and ultimately successfully reproduce despite ever-changing conditions.

The plant habit gives a clue as to how the plant has evolved to withstand even dramatic climatic swings, consumption by herbivores, loss of sunlight, and increase/decrease in water.

The term also refers to how well a plant ultimately reproduces and colonizes in global regions. For example, succulents are able to survive desert-like conditions due to their plant habit.

Succulent plants developed their unique appearance through evolutionary survival in harsh conditions, i.e., their evolving plant habit. Succulents are able to take advantage of quick, infrequent precipitation cycles due to their ability to hold and store water – these traits are all due to plant habits.

Plant habits are distinct among various plant families.

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