Stems carry out vital jobs for all flowering plants, they hold plants up and carry water and food around each plant. This book provides readers with a complete and comprehensive understanding of the role of stems, their structure and how they are brilliantly designed to do these jobs. Clear diagrams, engaging text, and stunning photographs are used to explain the huge variation between stems from blades of grass to tree trunks, how stems work, what happens inside a stem, how stems form, why bendy stems and stiff stems can give plants different advantages, plants with underground stems that store food, stems that grow sideways and why, and our relationship with stems. A wide range of examples present readers with stems they will be familiar with plus spectacular and unusual examples from around the world. These demonstrate what stems have in common and some incredible stem adaptations that allow plants to survive in different conditions and habitats. Two simple experiments help stimulate thought, reinforce learning, and bring the concepts to life.