Flowers

Flowers are an essential part of almost any plant hoping to reproduce. There are many parts to flowers, each one playing an important part in its continuation.

  • The Ovary is the part of the pistil that holds the ovule.
  • Inferior ovaries are when the petals and sepals are above the ovary.
  • Superior ovaries are when the petals and sepals are below the ovary.
  • Sepals are the outermost leaves of a flower, usually formed for protection for the flower.
  • Stamen are the part of the flower that produce pollen, the ‘male’ component of the flower’s reproductive system. They are made up of an anther (containing microspores) and a filament/stalk that holds up the stamen.
  • Pistils are the main reproductive ‘female’ organ of the flower. Centrally located, the number of pistils can determine the type of flower family.
  • Perfect flowers are flowers that have the ability to self-pollinate, due to having both female and male organs
  • Imperfect flowers are flowers that either have pistils or stamen, but not both, and therefore cannot reproduce on their own.
  • Radial symmetry is present in a stereotypical flower, when petals of equal size surround a central point in the middle of the flower, with symmetry at every angle.
  • Bilateral symmetry is present in things like Rorschach paintings, with both sides having equal parts and dimensions.
  • Irregular petals are petals that appear to have no symmetry at all.

 

Flower family characterization

Different flower families have different biological makeups.

 

Aster

Sunflower-like: petals surround middle

 

Buttercup

Numerous stamens

 buttercup

Carrot

Umbles with umbles

Hollow stems

Palmately compound leaves

 carrot

Heath

Joined/bell-shaped or free petals

Five sepals, 10 stamens

 heath

Iris

inferior ovary

radially symmetrical

 iris

Lily

Superior ovary

Radially symmetrical

 lily

Mint

Square stems

Opposite leaves

 mint

Mustard

Superior ovary

Four petals

 mustard

Orchid

Inferior ovary

Bilaterally symmetrical

 orchid

Pea

2 petals joined, 3 free

Irregularly-shaped petals

 pea

Rose

Numerous stamens

 rose

Violet

Differently shaped petals; 2 upper, 2 side, 1 lower

 violet

 

A field guide

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