The veins of plant leaves exhibit a large variety of morphologies. They are often thought to result from their growth in a concentration scalar eld. It is shown here that the topology of these patterns rather corresponds to what is expected from growth in a tensorial stress eld. This is demonstrated by analogic experiments performed on crack formation in gel lms where many characteristic venation patterns, of both dicotyledons and monocotyledons, were reproduced. This suggests, for the origin of the veins formation, a set of hypotheses which is new but supported by known physiological data.
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