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Plant Taxonomy

Last updated date: 22nd Feb 2024
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It is easier for us to understand something when it is segregated and classified into a particular group or structure. In the same way, when a plant is labelled and divided into a particular family of species, then it is termed as Plant Taxonomy. This is the fundamental platform for studying plants and their features in the complete world of science. We will also cover a few important MCQ on Plant Taxonomy and its significance with solutions.

Plant Taxonomy is the top-most important subject for any layman to know and be aware of. Focussing on this aspect, let us understand the basic concepts and properties of Plant Taxonomy as in the following. But before everything, we have a few more ideas to grasp regarding Plant Taxonomy and its definition. 

What is Plant Taxonomy?

The main branch of science and taxonomic studies (natural studies), that deals with the process of finding, identifying, describing, classifying, and naming different kinds of plant species is called Plant Taxonomy. 

Both Plant Taxonomy and Plant Systematics are quite similar in their practice. Plant Systematics refers to the study and observation of higher-level plant species and their relationship with other plants along with the research on evolutionary aspects. While Plant Taxonomy is the specialized mode of handling plant specimens. Yet, the methods and goals of practising Plant systematics and Plant Taxonomy.

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Why is Plant Taxonomy so Important in Scientific Areas?

The significance of following Plant Taxonomy is crucial to the field of science and other inter-related core fields such as medicine, natural studies, and biology. Hence, some of the main reasons to appreciate the importance of Plant Taxonomy is given below:

  • To enhance the basic knowledge about a certain group of plants. 

  • To arrange data for better memory and understanding. 

  • For ease of reading and better comprehension with others. 

  • To find out the source and origin of a specific plant gene. 

  • To study the genetic relation across plant cells. 

  • To indicate the habitat and distribution of plants on the earth.

  • To provide real-time applications and gain benefits from using a particular plant community for societal, economical and health-related well-being.


A Gist about the 3 Important Goals of Plant Taxonomy

The 3 major goals of doing a plant taxonomy are the identification, classification, and description phases. Understanding the features and differences in these 3 cases is crucial to the practice of Plant Taxonomy. Get a quick idea of what these 3 goals are all about from the following.

  1. Identification in Plant Taxonomy: The first step of plant taxonomy is identifying what species a particular plant is. This is possible either by using guides and textbooks as external sources or even comparing and studying previously collected similar plant resources.

  1. Classification in Plant Taxonomy:  As stated before, classifying and placing a plant in a specific group or category helps in ease of understanding and better knowledge about the subject matter. This classification has to follow empirical norms (scientific classification) to get a proper hierarchy and better accuracy.  After the classification, a plant can be given a label (name) as per the International Code of Nomenclature (ICN). This step applies to algae and fungi variants as well. 

  1. Description in Plant Taxonomy: With the validation of ICN guidelines, a particular species of plant is described with the characteristics and features and is finally registered in the ‘International Plant Names Index’ with other authorized publications.

Note that the 2nd step ‘Plant Classification’ has a common hierarchy of categorizing plants based on their share characteristic and ranking. They are the Kingdom, Division, Class, Order, Family, Genus, and Species. 

Plant Taxonomy MCQs with Answers

1. Which among the following is the correct order of classification?

  1. Kingdom, Phylum, Genus, Division, Order, Class, Species, Family. 

  2. Phylum, Division, Class, Order, Genus, Species, Family, Kingdom.

  3. Kingdown, Division, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species.

  4. Division, Genus, Family, Species, Class, Order, Kingdom, Phylum.

Ans: C (Kingdown, Division, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species)

2. Out of the following options, which is the correct Class of a Banana?

  1. Plantae. 

  2. Liliopsida 

  3. Musa acuminata 

  4. Musaceae

Ans: B (Liliopsida)

3. Which among the below systems does not exist?

  1. Phylogenetic system

  2. Artificial system

  3. Natural system 

  4. None of the Above 

Ans: D (None of the Above)

4. Choose the right answer for the common characteristic in Plant taxonomy. 

  1. Morphology

  2. Palynology

  3. All of the Above 

  4. Anatomy 

Ans: C (All of the Above)

5. Which year was the beginning phase of modern biological nomenclature?

  1. 1856

  2. 1758

  3. 1747

  4. 1857

Ans: B (1758)

6. The document that includes all the information related to a particular genus or plant family is termed as:

  1. Monograph

  2. Record 

  3. Revision 

  4. Plant Module 

Ans: A (Monograph)

7. Systematic Biology is the term used to refer:

  1. Phenetics + Plant Taxonomy 

  2. Phylogenetic + Biology

  3. Systematics + Plant Taxonomy 

  4. Dendrogram + Biology 

Ans: C (Systematics + Plant Taxonomy)

8. Who was the first-ever philosopher to classify living organisms?

  1. Whittaker

  2. Aristotle

  3. Linnaeus

  4. Charles Darwin

Ans: B (Aristotle)

More About Plant Taxonomy

The world around us is infinite. It is composed of millions of living and nonliving organisms even beyond the comprehension of the human mind. Each day there are discoveries. However, the human brain has been able to capture these species and create taxonomies that help us classify and study them closely. Due to these systems, students and learners can make sense of the world around them and understand this magnificent creation that we inhabit.

If you go to a forest, you will see hundreds upon thousands of plant species. Did you know that even before the plant taxonomy given by modern science, India had and continues to have its indigenous classification system based on the traditional science of Ayurveda? Ayurveda or the Science of Life essentially uses a wide variety of herbal concoctions to treat the human body and prevent the occurrence of diseases. We also have a branch of science called the Vrikshayurveda which is used to study and treat plants and trees!  Plant Taxonomy is the natural science of finding, identifying, describing and classifying plant species and handling plant specimens. Another similar science in Plant Systematics studies and observes higher-level plant species and conducts research on plants from relational and evolutionary perspectives.

FAQs on Plant Taxonomy

1. What are some MCQs to keep in mind while studying plant taxonomy?

1. Which is the correct form of plant hierarchy? 

  1. Kingdom, Species, Genus, Division, Order, Family

  2. Kingdom, Division, Class, Order, Family, Genus and Species 

  3. Division, Kingdom, Order, Family, Genus, Species

  4. Kingdom, Class, Division, Family, Order, Species, Genus

2. What is the study of plant identification and classification known as? 

  1. Plant Classification System

  2. Plant Systematics

  3. Plant Taxonomy

  4. Plant Species Classifiers

3. What is a characteristic of Plant Taxonomy? 

  1. Physiology

  2. Morphology

  3. Anatomy

  4. None of the Above

2. What is the importance of plant taxonomy in science?

Plant Taxonomy is crucial to fields such as science, medicine and biology. It helps enhance our knowledge of plants and plant families, frame classifications for better understanding and memory, find the origin of plant genes, study genetic relationships and habitats and create applications such that plant communities can be utilized for societal, economic and overall well-being. 

3. What are the goals of plant taxonomy?

The three major goals are to identify, classify and describe plant species and plant families. 

  1. Identification - This is the first step in understanding plant species through the use of external resources such as guides or even comparison with plant resources obtained from earlier.

  1. Classification - The classification of plants follows empirical norms to achieve accurate hierarchy and understanding. The plants are then given a label as per the International Code of Nomenclature which also applies to species such as algae and fungi. The classical plant hierarchy is Kingdom, Division, Class, Order, Family, Genus and Species.

  1. Description - Once the ICN validates, a particular identified species is described as per its characteristic features and gets registered under the International Plant Names Index.

4. What is the best way to prepare for the topic of plant taxonomy?

Biology as a subject is closely connected to how we experience and understand life and life processes. The best way to approach it is with an open, curious mind that is eager to understand the world around you. However, as a subject that can get quite theoretical, it requires consistent note-taking and revision. Students can refer to Vedantu’s endless resources on biologies such as articles, revision notes and important concepts. Students can also prepare revision notes for themselves as that enhances retaining of concepts, strengthens understanding and also makes studying an attentive, fun process! Mind mapping is an effective way of studying plant taxonomy as it involves multiple species and classifications.

5. How can the knowledge of plant taxonomy be applied to real life?

The world around us is a place of wonders. The scientific system of plant taxonomy helps us understand the characteristics and benefits of various plants around us. It enables us to study how plants relate to each other and how we can relate to plants. Gardening is considered to be a highly therapeutic activity because it connects us to mother nature. Plant taxonomy can strengthen our understanding of what kind of plants to grow and how to take care of them. If we combine this knowledge with that of Ayurveda, we will have a deep understanding of how to care for and utilize plants for well-being.