Plant Cell Parts | Their Structure and Functions

Plant cell parts are almost similar to animal cells with few exceptions and functional differences.

These plant cells are eukaryotic and are rigid and harder than animal cells.

Further, plant cells are green in color due to the presence of special pigments that aid in photosynthesis.

See the differences between plant cell and animal cell in terms of cell organelles and other components.

Plant Cell Parts

1. Cell wall
2. Cell membrane
3. Cytoplasm
4. Mitochondria
5. Lysosomes
6. Peroxisomes
7. Chloroplasts
8. Golgi apparatus
9. Endoplasmic reticulum
10. Nucleus
11. DNA, RNA
12. Plasmodesmata

plant cell parts | structure

1. Cell wall

A plant cell has a rigid cell wall, which is the outermost of the cell. It is made up of chitin, lignin and other materials. It transforms as a primary cell wall and latter to the secondary cell wall. It is also called as the exoskeleton and give rigidity and firm shape to the cell.

Its functions include

  • To protect the entire cell from harsh environmental conditions.
  • To prevent drying of the cell by loss of water.
  • Allow the passage of a few substances like water into and out of the cell.

2. Cell membrane

This is also called a plasma membrane and is present adjacent to the cell wall. This cell membrane incorporates cytoplasm and other cell components. It is a lipid bi-layer and selectively permeable to a few substances like water.

3. Cytoplasm

This is a fluid matrix consisting of cell organelles, water and other dissolved substances in it. This cytoplasm helps in the distribution of materials through the entire cell through rotation called cytoplasmic streaming.
Besides, it also forms inter-cellular bridges for better communication. These cytoplasmic bridges are called plasmodesmata.

4. Mitochondria

These are the energy-producing organelles. Mitochondria are called as powerhouses and help to supply energy for the entire cell needs. These are oval-shaped and have single-strand DNA, which helps in its self-replication.

5. Lysosomes

These are the cell organelles that are attached to the cell membrane. They help to digest the proteins in the cell and also act as suicidal bags to destroy the entire cell in case the cell gets damaged beyond repair. Further, they prevent any foreign harmful substances from entering the cell.

6. Peroxisomes

These organelles are present near the nucleus and help metabolize lipid substances. They are also involved in photosynthesis.

7. Chloroplast

chloroplast and important plant cell organelle

This is a special organelle present only in the plant cells. It is absent in animal cells. These organelles the seat of photosynthesis. They have colored pigments, namely chlorophyll, which help in the absorption of light and traps the energy to synthesize carbohydrates.

8. Golgi apparatus

These are sac-like structures and help in the modification and transportation of proteins and other substances in the cell.

plant cell part | Diagram
Credit: LadyofHats/commons.wikimedia.org

9. Endoplasmic reticulum

This is a network of membranous structures attached to the nucleus. It is of two types as rough endoplasmic reticulum and smooth endoplasmic reticulum. This helps in protein synthesis and also lipid synthesis.

10. Nucleus

This is the master organelles that controls the cell. It has DNA the genetic material which decides the character of the plant. It controls cell division, RNA synthesis, protein synthesis, etc. See How is nucleus involved in protein synthesis for details.

11. DNA and RNA

These are genetic material that contains the cell characters. DNA is present in the nucleus and also in the mitochondria. At the same time, RNA is present in the nucleus and also cytoplasm.

12. Plasmodesmata

As mentioned before, these are cytoplasmic bridges that help in the transfer of components in between the cells. They help in cell communication, exchange of nutrients, waste material, etc. Since plants do not have a circulatory system, this plasmodesmata and sap transport helps in the vessel cells help in the movement of material through the whole plant.

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