Flower Power: The Physics of Pollination Biology Botany 

Flower Power: The Physics of Pollination

By Marie Davey @biophilesblog Pollination. The word brings to mind the droning buzz of fat yellow and black bumblebees bouncing from blossom to blossom in flower-decked meadows. But up close and in person, pollination is often anything but idyllic. The physical forces involved in pollination can be impressive, and both plants and insects must be well adapted to withstand them. The flowers of bunchberry (Cornus canadensis) generate impressive physical forces, acting as tiny pollen catapults. Bunchberry flower buds have petals that are fused to one another and completely enclose the…

Read More
A handful of honeybee pollen. Purdue University/Tom Campbell. Animals Environment 

Honeybee Pollen and Pesticides in Your Garden

By Kate Stone Scientists at Purdue University have been investigating where bees collect most of their pollen—and, consequently, unintended pesticides. The results are unexpected. Even in agricultural areas dominated by soybeans and corn, honeybees collect most of their pollen from plants other than agricultural crops. Furthermore, the pollen is consistently contaminated with pesticides.  Christian Krupke, professor of entomology, and Elizabeth Long, now an assistant professor of entomology at Ohio State University, collected pollen from honeybee hives in Indiana. What the researchers found surprised them. Spare the Bees in Your Backyard…

Read More