Pollinators’ paradise

Bees are a rare sight in the city. They are seen as a threat, and we humans are driving them to extinction. Yet, without them no life is possible on Earth.

A passion fruit vine in my garden sees scores of pollinators every afternoon. What’s admirable is that both species that visit, honeybees and stingless bees, collect nectar and pollen from the same flowers without being bothered by the other species.

The flowers are really interesting. They have three stigmas and five anthers, with thick styles and filaments. Each flower has two, very different layers of petals. The anthers’ bottoms are absolutely swamped with fine, dust-like yellow pollen.

Passion fruit pollen grains are super beautiful! They have a golf ball-like appearance. Some pollen grains are hollow, and slightly more yellowish than those that aren’t hollow.

The abundance of pollen coupled with the many visiting pollinators is certainly bearing fruit. Now there are not less than fifteen unripe passion fruits at various stages of development on the creeper!

CookerBird

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