• seagrass
  • Flowering plants which grow in marine, fully saline environments.
Abstract from DBPedia
    Seagrasses are the only flowering plants which grow in marine environments. There are about 60 species of fully marine seagrasses which belong to four families (Posidoniaceae, Zosteraceae, Hydrocharitaceae and Cymodoceaceae), all in the order Alismatales (in the clade of monocotyledons). Seagrasses evolved from terrestrial plants which recolonised the ocean 70 to 100 million years ago. The name seagrass stems from the many species with long and narrow leaves, which grow by rhizome extension and often spread across large "meadows" resembling grassland; many species superficially resemble terrestrial grasses of the family Poaceae. Like all autotrophic plants, seagrasses photosynthesize, in the submerged photic zone, and most occur in shallow and sheltered coastal waters anchored in sand or mud bottoms. Most species undergo submarine pollination and complete their life cycle underwater. While it was previously believed this pollination was carried out without pollinators and purely by sea current drift, this has been shown to be false for at least one species, Thalassia testudinum, which carries out a mixed biotic-abiotic strategy. Crustaceans (such as crabs, Majidae zoae, Thalassinidea zoea) and syllid polychaete worm larvae have both been found with pollen grains, the plant producing nutritious mucigenous clumps of pollen to attract and stick to them instead of nectar as terrestrial flowers do. Seagrasses form dense underwater seagrass meadows which are among the most productive ecosystems in the world. They function as important carbon sinks and provide habitats and food for a diversity of marine life comparable to that of coral reefs.

    海草(かいそう、英: Seagrass)は、水草の一種で、海域に生育する種子植物。 胞子で繁殖する藻類の「海藻」とは特徴が大きく異なる。しかし「海藻」と同音異義語で、しばしば両者の混同を招く場合があるため、区別の観点から海草を「うみくさ」と呼ぶこともある。