Hermaphrodite flower: definition and structure

Of hermaphrodite flower there are different types, in any case we find it equipped with pistil and stamen, whether it is a flower belonging to the category of monoecious, or that instead it is part of that of dioecious. The difference is that in the first case, the male flower and the female flower stand on the same plant, instead in the second they must be looked for on different plants. The corn it is of the first category: a classic example in which we recognize the male inflorescence in the plume and the female one in the panicle, or ear of wheat.

Hermaphrodite flower: structure

Just to be clear, let's start by specifying that the male flowers have stamens, the female ones have a pistil, while those hermaphrodites have stamens and pistils at the same time, in the same flower or two different flowers which may be on the same plant though the hermaphrodite flower is monoecious, or in two different plants if it is dioecious.

If we mean pure hermaphroditism, we must consider those plants in which only one flower is equipped with stamen and pistil, this happens in many species of the rosaceae family including the Medlar of Germany. Some examples of monoecious, however, therefore with close female and male flowers, even on the same branches, are pumpkin, oak, birch, larch, hawthorn, strawberry tree and black alder.

Hermaphrodite flower: definition

The definition of hermaphroditism it does not apply only to flowers and not only to plants, it is also used for animals. The term is related to the phenomenon whereby an individual of a given species can reproduce both male and female gametes simultaneously or successively. There are, in the animal world, some species whose reproduction is closely linked to this mechanism.

Spanning between fauna and flora, there are many types of hermaphroditism: the instant"Or" simultaneous ", also called "Sequential", for example, they are the two main ones. Then, as we have also seen for the hermaphrodite flower, there is the contrast between monoicism and dioicism.

Investigating this phenomenon in the world of plants is more difficult than it can be in the world of animals because vegetation often shows more complex reproductive cycles, also due to the presence of two types of germ cells. There are gametes, which behave like those of animals, and also spores, which don't even require a fertilization process in order to give rise to a new organism.

Hermaphrodite flower: meaning

In a very direct way a hermaphrodite flower is a flower that has no sex therefore the plant that produces it does not have male and female specimens, as it can happen with the Kiwi, an example often cited because it must also be known how to position correctly to obtain the fruits.

Let's also analyze the monoecious and dioecious terms, already seen. In the first case the word unites "Mono "and" oikos "which in Greek means" home ", the meaning is therefore of a plant with a single house, with two types of flowers, male and female, on the same plant. In these cases, pollination often occurs thanks to the wind which only carries the pollen from the male flowers to the ovary of the female flowers. This is how many forest species reproduce, such as the one already mentioned Black Alder but also the Corn it is a monoecious species.

Let's move on to dioecious plants. In this case the meaning of the term is that of "two houses", in fact there are two types of plants, the female and the male. Neither the Kiwi, nor the pistachio, nor the Lentisk are examples of hermaphrodite flowers.

Hermaphrodite flower: botany

Let's get to know other examples of the various categories illustrated. If the black alder is a monoecious hermaphrodite flower showing elongated yellow female flowers and round pinkish male flowers, the larch is a good example of a monoecious plant. Its male flowers are yellow cones, the female ones are purple, both are found on the same plant.

Among the plants dioƬche, an example not yet mentioned but known is l'holly. Its male flowers have 4 stamens, the female ones show smaller, non-functional and pollen-free stamens.

Hermaphrodite flower: pictures

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