|What's cryptogamic botany?|
Cryptogamic Botany is the field of study of spore-producing plants and similar spore-producing organisms. The "Cryptogams" are an artificial group, that is, a group of organisms that share a common trait but that are not necessarily close relatives of each other. When Carolus Linnaeus founded the basic system of classifying organisms in the mid-18th century, he used the term Cryptogamia to refer to all "plants" with hidden reproductive organs. The organisms he included in this group were the mosses and other bryophytes, ferns and fern allies, algae, and fungi: basically all the non-animal macroscopic organisms that don't have flowers or seed-bearing cones. Although the term cryptogamic botany is still in use, modern taxonomy (based mostly on genetic relationships) separates the cryptogams across three kingdoms. Cryptogam is derived from the Greek kryptos meaning "hidden" and gamos meaning "marriage", with "hidden marriage" referring to the invisible (microscopic) form of reproduction in these spore-producing organisms.