The corolla ismade of thepetals – theyattractpollinatorsThe stamens arethe male part ofthe flower – theyare made of theanther and thefilament. Theanther makes thepollen.The carpel is thefemale part and madeof the stigma, styleand ovary. In theovary are ovuleswhich have thefemale egg cell.
Flowers come in many shapes, colours and sizes.They are usually specially adapted to particulartypes of pollination.
There are two types ofpollination.Cross pollination –when pollen goes from oneplant to another of the sametype. This kind ofpollination results instronger plants.The other type of pollinationis self pollination wherethe pollen goes from theanther to the stigma of thesame plant. This can resultin a genetically weaker plantPollination is the transferof pollen from the antherto the sticky stigma bywind, animals/insects orwater.
Australian HoneyPossumThe Australianhoney possum isone of the onlymammalspecies, otherthan bats, knownto eat nectar andpollen as themainstay of itsdiet.
Brazilian BirthwortThe Brazilian birthwort usesinsects as pollinators. The putridodor of this species—like that ofrotting flesh—especially attractsflies, which enter the plant andbecome trapped overnight. Whilethey are trapped, they becomecompletely dusted with pollen.They escape the following day asthe plant withers and areattracted to other Brazilianbirthworts, which they theninadvertently pollinate as theyenter and again become trapped.
Worker Honey Bee in the FieldAs they fly from flower to flower, worker honey beescollect pollen grains and pack them onto their hindlegs in special hair-fringed pockets known as pollenbaskets (shown here holding a glob of yellow pollenon the hind leg). Nectar, the sweet liquid producedby flowers, is sucked into the honey stomach, aninternal storage sac. In the hive, field bees deposittheir pollen pellets into empty storage cells of thecomb and regurgitate nectar to waiting hive bees.The hive bees mix some nectar with the pollen tomake bee bread, a spoilage-proof larval food, andgradually concentrate the rest of the nectar intohoney by dehydration.
Butterfly Pollinating aFlowerMany species of butterflies eatplant nectar. When thesebutterflies land on a series offlowers in search of food, theybrush their bodies against bothmale and female floralorgans, inadvertently transferringpollen from one flower to another.
Lawson CypressBranchThe Lawson cypress, likeall other coniferoustrees, is wind pollinated.The tiny male “flowers”are located at the ends ofthe smallbranchlets, where thewind can easily pick upand distribute theirpollen.
Lesser Burdock PlantThe lesser burdock plant has a fruit that is encased in a burr covered withhooks. These hooks enable the burr to easily attach to the fur of passinganimals, which ensures wide-ranging dispersal of the seeds.