Botany (Greek βοτανική ( επιστημή ) botaniké [ episteme ]: Botany, from Greek βοτανή botáne, pasture, fodder plant ') researched as a branch of biology, the plants. It deals with the life cycle, metabolism, growth and development of plants; further with their ingredients ( see medicine), its ecology and its economic benefits (see Agriculture).

The origins of Botany go to the naturopathic employment with plants back. From a first abstract- scientific investigation and systematization of the plant kingdom, the writings of Theophrastus in the 3rd and 2nd centuries BC testify


Among the plants in the narrow sense include not only the vascular plants, the Mosses and green algae. Previously, fungi, lichens, and the prokaryotes (bacteria and archaea ) were regarded as plants. Although we recognize today that they are (as well as all algae except the green algae ) phylogenetically not closely related to the plants, algae groups such as red algae, brown algae, diatoms and fungi and lichens are further treated in botany.

Prokaryotes (including cyanobacteria contained therein, formerly known as blue-green algae ), are - along with other microorganisms - has long been objects of one 's own discipline of microbiology.


Core areas

Because of the different research methods and five branches of botany have developed in the core:

  • Plant morphology - study of the structure and form of the plants with the sub-regions Morphology in the narrower sense - external structure of plants
  • Anatomy - inner structure of plants
  • Histology - Histology
  • Cytology - fine structure of the cell
  • Plant physiology - study of the general operations of the plants with the sub-regions Metabolism
  • Irritation and exercise physiology
  • Developmental physiology
  • Plant Ecophysiology - deals with adaptations of plant physiology from an ecological perspective
  • Plant Systematics - Description and order of the plant world with subdivisions taxonomy
  • Paleobotany
  • Geobotany - researching the plants under competitive conditions and their dependence on the location. Sub-areas are: Vegetation Science (synonym are plant sociology, Phytocoenologie ) - deals with the construction and structure of vegetation
  • Customer premises or chorology - examines the distribution of plant taxa
  • Historical- genetic Geobotany - explores the distribution of plants clan in the past
  • Plant Ecology - examines the relationships of plants and plant communities and their environment

In many cases, there is also the division into General and Special Botany and Applied Botany. The Applied Botany is particularly concerned with the use of plants in agriculture, forestry, horticulture, landscape management and environmental protection.

Specialties and related disciplines

  • Archaeobotany
  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Cecidologie
  • Ethnobotany
  • Forest Botany
  • Genetics
  • Genetic engineering
  • Medicinal plants ( Pharmacognosy )
  • Karpologie
  • Wood Biology
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Plant Breeding
  • Phytopathology
  • Phytogeography