The flowers that are in plants are there as a vital part of a plant’s life cycle . Not all plants have flowers, but those that do are responsible for creating seeds , which give rise to new plants in different places. These seeds are part of the sexual reproduction of the plant. The formation of a new plant after the union of male and female sex cells can involve gametes from the same parent. In this process, male cells combine with female cells, a process that can happen in the same plant, leading to theself-pollination , or between two plants of the same species, called cross-pollination .
What is pollination?
The pollination is a process that is performed since the pollen from flower leaves stamen where it has been formed until it can reach the pistil in which can germinate to cause the emergence of new fruits and seeds .
- What does it consist of
- Pollination characteristics
- What is it for
- Which plants carry out wind pollination
- Which animals help pollination
What does it consist of
Flowers cannot mate on their own. They cannot move so to have any chance of male and female cellular interaction , they need a little help from other living organisms , such as bees, butterflies, and many insects and birds. In exchange for this help, the plants provide them with a very sweet liquid called nectar . These helpers are called pollinators . Nectar is simply sugar , produced within the flower to attract these pollinators. This means that the flowers that do not produce nectar will have to find a way to attract these helpers or find other ways to reproduce. So we can say that pollinationIt consists of the transfer of pollen from the stamens to the pistils of the flowers.
Flowers have different male and female structures , and it is through the pollination process that pollen is transferred from the male part to the female part. After pollination, the pollen releases a male gamete that fertilizes a female gamete in the egg and mixes its genetic material. After this fertilization, the ovule grows to form a seed .
Pollination is a process that has to happen before seeds are formed, so the flowers have a variety of shapes to make sure that it does. Male pollen is moved by the wind and animals are the methods used to transport it. All the colors , shapes , sizes and colors of the flowers are their ways of facilitating the wind or animals to collect and carry the pollen to the female flower .
The main characteristics of pollination are the following:
- Pollination can occur both within the same flower , as well as between several flowers , whether or not they are from the same plant.
- It is a basic mechanism for the existence of plants.
- The egg that is fertilized through this process will turn into a flower or fruit.
- The pollen is transported through different birds , insects , and other animals .
- Pollen can also be carried by the wind .
- The vectors pollination that help the process type may be biotic or abiotic .
- It generally occurs during spring , which is the season that has the best conditions for flowering and reproduction.
What is it for
Pollination helps us to produce new fruits and new seeds , since the process by which pollen grains and ovules work to create a new individual. So we can say that its main functions are the combination of genes and the creation of a new individual , which in this case is a plant.
There are two types of pollination, and these are the following:
- Self-pollination or direct pollination: this type of pollination occurs in flowers that are classified as hermaphrodites , and occurs when the pollen reaches the stigma of the same flower in which it was produced. It is also known as autogamy .
- Cross pollination : this pollination occurs if the pollen manages to reach the stigma of another flower on the same plant or on another of the same species . It is also known by the names of allogamy or heterogamy.
- Hydrophilic pollination : which requires the use of water as a vector for the transport of pollen. This type of pollen transport has been observed in very few species, but it is probable that floating pollen is present that is released from the stamens and drifts towards the threadlike stigmas.
The pollination process is relatively simple. The different colors that the flowers have and the different smells are responsible for attracting the different insects , since they find the sugary nectar in the flowers . These insects are responsible for taking pollen from flowers, or on some occasions, the wind is responsible for carrying it to the male anthers that then take it to the female stigma of a different flower . In this other flower, the pollen that was transported from the first flower will be responsible for fertilizing the ovulesthe second flower and after the egg is fertilized by pollen has the ability to turn into seeds .
Which plants carry out wind pollination
Flowers that are pollinated by the wind produce quite a bit of pollen and do not need insects to carry it. Many wind-pollinated species are found among grasses , which do not have showy blooms . Some of these plants are the following: goldenrod, corn, ragweed, trees such as oak, pine, black walnut, and sugar maples.
Which animals help pollination
Two of the main animals that actively collaborate with the pollination process are indisputably bees and birds . We can also mention insects such as wasps , moths , beetles and butterflies as important pollinators , and even some animals help with the process such as bats , hummingbirds , geckos and lemurs . It is for this reason that the use of insecticides in plants should be reduced , to avoid the death of these animals, so important in the biological cycle. of plants and flowers.
Pollination is of vital importance for the production of fruit and seed crops and plays an important role in programs designed to improve plants through reproduction, as well as being considered a basic part of the life cycle . Additionally, pollination studies are invaluable in understanding the evolution of flowering plants and their distribution in today’s world.
Among the different plants that can be pollinated we mention: fruits, vegetables, geraniums, roses, tulips, gardenias, cacti, etc.