Definition of orthostichy in English:



  • (in phyllotaxis) a vertical row of leaves arranged one directly above another.

    Contrasted with parastichy
    • ‘Phyllotactic rows are easiest to identify in columnar cacti because vertically aligned leaf primordia merge together forming ribs (orthostichies).’
    • ‘Longitudinal section of shoot apex and an orthostichy of leaf primordia that are forming a rib.’
    • ‘On the dorsal surface of the branch there are also two orthostichies of leaves of the usual form.’
    • ‘Spiral phyllotaxis patterns have only parastichies, whereas whorled patterns have both orthostichies and parastichies.’
    • ‘Typically, they traverse the same number of internodes between the position at which they diverge from the minor axial bundles until they enter the branch base as the number of leaf orthostichies on the shoot.’


Late 19th century: from ortho- ‘upright, straight’ + Greek stikhos row, rank.