what is whorl?
In botany, a whorl is an arrangement of sepals, petals, leaves, stipules or branches that radiate from a single point and surround or wrap around the stem. A whorl consists of at least three elements.
- the calyx, a whorl of sepals at the base, above which are
- the corolla, a whorl of petals,
- the androecium, a whorl of stamens (each comprising a filament and an anther), and
- the gynecium, a whorl of the female parts of a flower: the stigma, style and ovary.
A flower lacking any of these floral structures is said to be incomplete or imperfect.
For leaves to grow in whorls is fairly unusual except in plant species with very short internodes. It does however occur in some trees such as Brabejum stellatifolium and other Proteaceae, such as some Banksia species. In examples such as those illustrated, crowded internodes within the whorls alternate with long internodes between the whorls.
A whorl is a type of spiral or circular pattern.
Other meanings of whorl include:
- Whorl (botany), used to describe the attachment of sepals, petals, leaves, or branches at a single point
- Whorl (biology), used to describe the structures of organs and used in the aid of identification
- Whorl (fingerprint), a type of fingerprint pattern
- Whorl (mollusc), a single, complete 360° turn in the spiral growth of a mollusc shell
- Body whorl, in a mollusc shell the most recently formed whorl of a spiral shell, terminating in the aperture
- Hair whorl, a whorl in the hair of an animal
- Hair whorl (horse), hair whorls in horses
- Spindle whorl, a weight attached to a spindle