Parts of the wheat plant

Plant parts

Parts of the wheat plant (Photo courtesy Oregon State University)

Note: Coleoptile tiller is often missing.

Plant height Wheat is typically from 0.7 to 1.2 m tall.
Roots Wheat produces both seminal and nodal (or crown or adventitious) roots. The seminal roots form from the seed. The nodal roots form from the lower nodes, are associated with tillers and become increasingly important as the plant grows
Stem & tillers Wheat has a single main stem plus typically 2-3 tillers per plant. The number of tillers tends to increase with better growing conditions and with a lower crop density. Tillering starts at the 3-4 leaf stage; approximately when the first nodal roots can be seen.
Leaves Wheat leaves form at each node and include a leaf sheath that wraps around the stem and a leaf blade. Wheat has small auricles. These wrap around the stem at the point where the leaf sheath meets the leaf blade.
Spike The spike (also called the ear or head) forms at the top of the plant. A spike usually has 35-50 grains (or kernels).
Grain Wheat grain typically weighs 30-60 mg (i.e., 30-60 g/1000 grains) depending on variety and growing conditions. Reduced grain size often indicates moisture stress during grain filling.