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  Section: Introduction to Botany » Angiosperms
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  Life Cycle
  Comparing Angiosperms to Gymnosperms

An animal reproduction, a sperm cell unites with an egg cell to produce a zygote, which grows to the next generation. As we have thus far seen, the reproductive events in the life cycle of a moss or fern are Merent. They are also different in flowering plants, where an egg is fertilized by a sperm, and the new individual that grows from the zygote reproduces by asexual means (spores). The spore-producing plant can then produce a new individual that reproduces sexually. As previously described, this is alternation of generations: a sexually reproducing generation alternating an with asexually reproducing generation; a gametophyte producing a sporophyte and the sporophyte then producing a gametophyte.

When gametes (egg and sperm) are produced in animals, meiosis results in a reduction of the chromosome number. In plant reproduction, as has already been seen, meiosis does not occur at the time of gamete production, and, in fact, the gametophyte, whichp roduces the gametes, is already haploid.


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