Saturday, 29 October 2016

How do plants do sex?

Most of the plants what we see around are called by botanists as angiosperms. That means the plants in which tiny baby plants or seeds are surrounded by soft and tasty fruit pulp and protective fruit coat. Whether these seeds are formed by themselves or any great mechanisms lies behind it, is the inquisitive question. Yes, that's through sexual reproduction.

We all know that production of babies resembling that of their parents is called reproduction. Could we call production of vehicles as reproduction. No, why because the structure of vehicles is different from that of the factory that produces them! Then what's meant by sex? This's another question!  Sex means being distinguished into male and female beings due to distinctive reproductive features. Just like human beings and other animals plants too exist as male plants and female plants,  or as a single plant with both male and female flowers, or as a single flower with male and female organs. Anyhow union of a male cell with a female cell is compulsory to be called as sexual reproduction.  

Animals and human beings can move from one place to the other to do mating with their opposite sex or to fulfil the need for perpetuation of their species. But plants have their own limitations. That means they can't move from one place to the other. But nature has the sense of "live and let live" principle.

To make possible the process of mating between plants or their beautiful flowers mediators like insects, snails, snakes, birds, bats and other animals and even  elephants are always there! These kind companions which have learnt the art of living are called pollinators. Another question is, "Why are these agents called pollinators?" The answer is due to their assistance in pollination. 

Then, what's meant by pollination? Pollination means transfer of pollen from anthers to stigma. It's just like introduction of sperms into the womb of the female in case of animals.  Here anthers are male parts of the plant that produce and release male cells packed inside a tightly packed micro balls called the pollen. At the time of maturiy the pollen from males has to reach the stigma of the females. This process is made possible by wind breeze, cool water or living creatures. Stigma is the reception counter of the female organ where male cells are let to go deep into the ovary to unite with their female counterparts. 

Wow! What the great mechanism in the plant world? So much process takes place without any song, music, dance, indecency and obscenity. No need of any video clip, sex ads or violence. That's why the nature is so beautiful, great, peaceful and ever appealing!
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