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The Digital Nature Archive of Singapore
Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum



  • Abaxial

    Designating the surface of a leaf that is fruther away from the apex of the axis that bears it; the lower or dorsal surface of such an organ.

  • Abiotic
    [Gk. a, not, without + bios, life]

    Nonliving; specifically, the nonliving components of an ecosystem, such as temperature, humidity, the mineral content of the soil, etc.

  • Abscise

    To separate or be separated by abscission.

  • Abscission

    The separation of leaves, flowers and fruits from the plant by the formation of an abscission layer.

  • Acicular

    Needle-shaped, very narrow.

  • Acrophyll

    Frond of adult ferns of the genera Teratophyllum, Lomagramma and Lomariopsis.

  • Acroscopic

    Facing or on the side towards the apex.

  • Acrostichoid

    Having the fertile lamina of a fern totally covered with sporangia.

  • Acuminate

    A tip drawn out to a slender point.

  • Adaxial

    Designating the surface of a leaf that is closest to the apex of the axis that bears it; the upper or ventral surface of such an organ.

  • Akinete

    A thick-walled nonmotile spore derived from a vegetative cell that thickens its wall.

  • Amorphous

    Lacking a definite shape; formless.

  • Analgesic

    A substance that gives pain relief.

  • Anastomosing

    Of veins forming a network of reticulum.

  • Angiosperm

    A huge and diverse group of vascular plants with seeds borne in an ovary.

  • Anisogamous

    Referring to organisms that indulge in anisogamy.

  • Anisogamy

    The sexual fusion of dissimilar gametes.

  • Annulus

    The row of thickened cells running round the sporangial head.

  • Anterior

    Towards the front of the body.

  • Anthelminitic

    A drug or agent that destroys or cause the expulsion of intestinal worms.

  • Anther

    The part of the flower bearing the pollen; the terminal part of the stamen consisting of two lobes, each with two sacs containing pollen.

  • Anting

    The use of ants by birds to remove ectoparasites in their plumage. Ants are either allowed to swarm onto the plumage or actively picked up and placed onto the plumage.

  • Antitussive

    Allevating of suppressing coughing.

  • Aplanogamete

    A nonmotile gamete, found in certain lower algæ.

  • Aplanospore

    An asexual nonmotile spore.

  • Appose

    To place side by side or near to each other.

  • Arboreal

    Living in trees.

  • Archegonium

    The female sex organ in algae, fungi, bryophytes and ferns that produces the egg (pleural: archegonia).

  • Areole

    A space between the veins in reticulate venation.

  • Aril

    A fleshy outgrowth of some seeds that is derived from the funicle eg. the aril of nutmeg that gives the spice mace, the seed being the nutmeg.

  • Asexual reproduction

    Any form of reproduction in which new individuals develop from a single parent; reproduction without involving sex cells from two different individuals.

  • Astringent

    Causing contraction of body tissues; checking of blood flow; restricting secretion of fluids.

  • Attenuate


  • Auricle

    Ear-like structure found at the base of the frond stalk of Angiopteris and Marattia.

  • Autospore

    A nonmotile spore that is the miniature of the cell from which it is derived.

  • Awn

    Stiff bristle-like appendage in the flowering glumes of grass.

  • Axil

    The angle formed by the adaxial surface of a branch or leaf and the shoot that bears it.

  • Axillary bud

    The bud that is found in the axil of a leaf.

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