Hibiscus Guts

by Stephanie Suesan Smith, Ph.D. on August 27, 2010

These are three photographs of a Hibiscus growing in the Heritage Garden of Hunt County.  In the first one, you have a rather ordinary photo of a hibiscus.  The other two photos are much more interesting.

Hibiscus flower

Hibiscus flower

In this photograph, you see the stigma, or receptive organ for the sperm that is carried in the pollen.  As you can see, it is set up so any insect gathering nectar or pollen from the flower will brush the stigma and leave behind some pollen from another flower.  Since bees typically only gather pollen form one species of flower at a time, the pollen will probably be of the same species and usable by the plant.

Hibiscus interior

Here you can see the pollen better.

Hibiscus pollen inside flower

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