The main difference between bryophytes and tracheophytes is that the bryophytes are nonvascular plants while the tracheophytes are the vascular plants. Furthermore, bryophytes include mosses, liverworts, and hornworts while tracheophytes include ferns, gymnosperms, angiosperms.
Bryophytes and tracheophytes are the two may categories of plants, characterized based on the presence of a vascular system.
Key Areas Covered
1. What are Bryophytes
– Definition, Characteristics, Classification
2. What are Tracheophytes
– Definition, Characteristics, Classification
3. What are the Similarities Between Bryophytes and Tracheophytes
– Outline of Common Features
4. What is the Difference Between Bryophytes and Tracheophytes
– Comparison of Key Differences
Bryophytes, Gametophyte, Sporophyte, Tracheophytes, Vascular System
What are Bryophytes
Bryophytes represent a division of plants with the least organization of the kingdom of Plantae. They live in moist and shady places. They grow up to several millimeters in general. The prominent phase of the life cycle of bryophytes is the gametophyte, which is haploid. The sporophyte germinates on the gametophyte. The plant body of bryophytes is not differentiated into root, stem, and leaves. The root-like structures called rhizoids attach the plant to the substrate. Bryophytes absorb water and nutrients from their leaves. They lack a vascular system to transport water and nutrients throughout the plant. This limits the size of the plant on land. The phenolic compounds produced by bryophytes can deter herbivores.
The three clades of bryophytes are Marchantiophyta (liverworts), Bryophyta (mosses) and Anthocerotophyta (hornworts). Liverworts are leafy plants. The leaves of mosses are single-cell thick. The sporophyte of hornworts resembles a horn.
What are Tracheophytes
Tracheophytes are plants with a vascular system. The vascular system of a plant is made up of xylem, which transports water and minerals, and the phloem, which transports sucrose. The second most characteristic feature of tracheophytes is the sporophyte, which is the prominent life stage. Also, the plant body of tracheophytes is differentiated into root, stem, and leaves. They absorb water and minerals from their roots. The waxy layer around the plant body prevents the loss of water. The stomata in the leaves are involved in gas exchange.
The two types of tracheophytes are cryptogams and phanerogams. Cryptogams are non-seed plants while phanerogams are seed plants. Ferns and horsetails are the two types of cryptogams that reproduce through the production of spores while angiosperms and gymnosperms are phanerogams.
Similarities Between Bryophytes and Tracheophytes
- Bryophytes and Tracheophytes are the two main categories of plants classified based on the presence of a vascular system.
- They undergo alteration of generations.
- Both contain a cuticle to protect the plant from dehydration.
- They are autotrophs that fix energy by photosynthesis.
- Both types of plants undergo asexual reproduction as well as sexual reproduction.
Difference Between Bryophytes and Tracheophytes
Bryophytes refer to a division of photosynthetic, chiefly terrestrial, nonvascular plants, including mosses, liverworts, and hornworts while tracheophytes refer to any division comprising green plants (such as ferns and seed plants) with a vascular system that contains tracheids or tracheary elements.
Bryophytes live in moist and shady places while tracheophytes can live in dry environments as well.
While tracheophytes have a vascular system, bryophytes do not have a vascular system. This is the main difference between bryophytes and tracheophytes.
Prominent Stage of the Life Cycle
Gametophyte is the prominent stage of the life cycle of bryophytes while sporophyte is the prominent stage of the life cycle of tracheophytes. Furthermore, the prominent stage of life cycle of bryophytes is haploid while the prominent stag of the life cycle of tracheophytes is diploid. This is another important difference between bryophytes and tracheophytes.
Bryophytes are small in size and can be several millimeters long while tracheophytes are large and can be several meters long.
Plant Body Differentiation
The plant body of bryophytes is not differentiated into root, stem, and leaves while the plant body of tracheophytes is differentiated into root, stem, and leaves.
The main function of the root-like structures of bryophytes is to attach the plant to the substrate while the roots of tracheophytes absorb water and nutrients as well.
Also, the stem of bryophytes is soft while the stem of tracheophytes is strong and undergo secondary growth.
Liverworts do not have stoma and other bryophytes have stoma only in the sporangium of the sporophyte while tracheophytes have stoma in the leaves and immature stems.
The three types of bryophytes are liverworts, mosses, and hornworts while the tracheophytes can be ferns, gymnosperms, and angiosperms.
Bryophytes, which lack a vascular system, are the most primitive type of plant kingdom. The prominent life stage of bryophytes is the haploid gametophyte. On the other hand, tracheophytes are the well-organized type of plants with a vascular system. The sporophyte is the prominent life stage of tracheophytes. The main difference between bryophytes and tracheophytes is the presence of a vascular system and prominent life stage.
1. “Bryophyta.” Bryophyta – Characteristics, Life Cycle and Examples of Bryophyta, Byjus Classes, 28 Aug. 2018, Available Here
2. “Tracheophytes – NatureWorks.” NatureWorks, New Hampshire PBS, Available Here