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A leaflet in botany is a part of a compound leaf. A leaflet may resemble an entire leaf, but it is not borne on a stem as a leaf is, but rather on a vein of the whole leaf. Compound leaves are common in many plant families. For example, a tomato plant has compound leaves with leaflets.
Leaflets borne on the central vein of a leaf are referred to as pinnae; the compound leaves themselves are described as pinnate. A plant may be further subdivided in that the pinnae are themselves split into leaflets, or pinnules; these leaves are now twice pinnate, or bipinnate. A few plant species even have tripinnate leaves.
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