The childhood tale of Jack and the Beanstalk includes an episode in which bean seedlings grow up through the clouds in a single night. Although we may smile at such a notion, the event does raise questions. Why don't plants grow as fast in our world? What limits the growth rate of real plants? This review examines the prevailing concept that plant cell growth results from turgor-driven yielding of the cell wall. This is a physical description of how plant cells increase in size during growth and morphogenesis, thereby 0066-4294/86/060 1 -0377$02.00 COSGROVE enabling plants to create a full leaf canopy, a tall stem structure, and an extensive root system. For purposes of discussion , the theme of turgor-driven cell growth will be dissected into two broad questions: what characteristics of the cell wall enable it to yield (extend irreversibly) in a controlled fashion for prolonged periods of time, and how is water transported to and absorbed by growing cells to maintain turgor pressure in the face of prolonged yielding of the cell wall? Various facets of these questions will be examined in tum, with an emphasis on the most recent work and on efforts to define the
Annual Review of Plant Biology – Annual Reviews
Published: Jun 1, 1986
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