Stems are the aboveground structures that bear the plant’s leaves and flowers. The stem provides a host of services to the plant:
- It provides a pathway for transporting water up to the leaves, and moving the sugars produced in the leaves down to nourish the roots.
- It acts as a sturdy mast to hold up the leaves and help orient them for maximum exposure to sunlight.
- It can act as a storage site for carbohydrates.