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Articles on Flowers

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Common hazel dispersing pollen in early spring. Arterra/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Achoo! 5 essential reads for pollen season

Pollen brings seasonal misery to millions of Americans, but it serves a critical purpose: fertilizing many kinds of plants, including food crops.
Climate change stresses plants, forcing them to turn off the cellular machinery that helps them grow. (Shutterstock)

How climate change stresses plants and alters their growth

The climate crisis makes it important to investigate and understand the mechanisms of plant growth if we are to keep agricultural crops sustainable.
Bees feeding in monoculture fields of single crops such as sunflowers crowd together and pass parasites to one another at high rates. Lauren Ponisio/University of Oregon

Planting mixes of flowers around farm fields helps keep bees healthy

Huge single-crop fields attract bees in such numbers that they spread parasites to one another. Planting diverse mixes of flowers around fields helps spread out pollinators and keep them healthy.
Researchers crack the conundrum about why African Baobab trees in southern Africa differ in terms of fruit production. Sarah Venter

The sex organs of baobab flowers may solve the puzzle of trees that bear more fruit

Baobab flowers have male and female parts but individual trees appear to be favouring one rather than the other. To keep tree populations healthy and fruitful, both types are needed.
Caley’s grevillea (Grevillea caleyi) occurs in Sydney. It needs fire to germinate but burns are hard to carry out near urban areas. Tony Auld

The 50 beautiful Australian plants at greatest risk of extinction — and how to save them

Many threatened plant species aren’t being targeted for conservation. Identifying which are closest to being lost forever is the first step to protect them.
A floral scent can be enjoyable for a person, but it has an important job for the flower. Richard L. Harkess

Why do flowers smell?

Not all flowers smell good, to people at least, but their scents are a way to attract pollinators.
Hundreds of beetle species seem to be specialists that feed only from small white flowers on trees. Susan Kirmse

Tiny treetop flowers foster incredible beetle biodiversity

In the Amazon, beetles and flowering trees have developed a tight bond. Hundreds of beetle species thrive off of and pollinate blossoms, helping to maintain some of the highest biodiversity on Earth.

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