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Which of the following non-flowering plants cannot synthesize food on their own?
A. Ferns
B. Fungi
C. Algae
D. None of the above

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Last updated date: 20th Jun 2024
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Answer
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Hint: Ferns belong to the group of non-flowering plants and can also produce food on their own. Fungi are a species of parasitic organism that cannot produce food on their own but do not belong to the classification of plants. Similarly, algae belong to the Protista family but are photosynthetic and can produce food on their own.

Complete answer:Ferns are vascular plants that reproduce via spores. These plants belong to the order of angiosperms where they do not produce seeds or flowers and only propagate through spore formation and sporophyte generation. They also grow tall as trees and have the photosynthetic ability to produce their own food.
Fungi are a group of eukaryotic organisms that can be both microorganisms such as mold, yeast, and also edible vegetables like mushrooms. Fungi are a separate kingdom of their own where they possess a chitinous cell wall and lack photosynthetic capability. Fungi are not a species of plants as plants are a separate kingdom of their own. Fungi primarily obtain food from parasitic behaviors. Fungi often evolve a symbiotic relationship with plants and or algae.
Algae are a large group of eukaryotic photosynthetic organisms that belong to the kingdom Protista. They have chlorophyll content within them which enables the organism to produce food on its own. But algae lack vasculature and reproduce via spores, budding, fragmentation, and occasionally vis sexual reproduction like zygote formation.

Therefore, the correct option is D.

Note:The question states a non-flowering plant that cannot produce food. Ferns are non-flowering plants but can produce food on their own. Fungi cannot produce food on their own but are not considered plants. Similarly, algae can produce food on their own but are not considered plants. Therefore, none of the options given is the correct answer.