Cronquist, Arthur New York Botanical Garden, New York, New York.
Last reviewed:January 2021
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The branch of biological science that embraces the study of plants and plant life. Botany is the scientific study of plants (see illustration), encompassing investigations of plant anatomy, physiology, genetics, phylogeny, ecology, pathology, and geographic distribution. According to the specific objectives of the investigators, botanical studies may range from microscopic observations of the smallest and obscurest plants to the study of trees of the forest. One botanist may be interested mainly in the relationships among plants and in their geographic distribution, whereas another may be primarily concerned with structure or with the study of the life processes taking place in plants. See also: Plant; Plant anatomy; Plant geography; Plant growth; Plant nomenclature; Plant pathology; Plant phylogeny; Plant physiology
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