What are pollinators?
A pollinator is anything that helps fertilize plants through the transfer of pollen. Fertilized plants produce fruits and seeds. Over 80% of the world's flowering plants reproduce with the help of pollinators!
Source: Pollinators. (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2020, from https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/
The plants below can be found in our collection. Hover over them to learn about their pollinators!
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This stinky plant is pollinated by flies! Carrion scented flowers trap and temporarily imprison flies, covering them with pollen before they are released.
Source: Sakai, Shoko. (2002). Pollinators of Aristolochia spp. (Aristolochiaceae) breeding on decomposing flowers. American journal of botany. 89. 527-34. 10.3732/ajb.89.3.527.
Many banana species are pollinated by birds, like this Long-billed Spiderhunter.
Source: Musa x paradisiaca . (n.d.). Retrieved April 16, 2020, from https://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Musa+x+paradisiaca
Musa x paradisiaca
These exotic beauties attract birds, bees, and butterflies!
Source: Japanese lantern. (2019, April 16). Retrieved April 16, 2020, from https://www.edenproject.com/learn/for-everyone/plant-profiles/japanese-lantern
This orchid is named after Charles Darwin, who hypothesized that its pollinator must have a long proboscis. Decades later, scientists discovered the Hawk Moth, which does indeed have a long proboscis! The relationship between the Darwin orchid and the Hawk Moth is considered to be an example of co-evolution.
Watch the video above to see the Hawk Moth in action!
Source: Newman, J. H. (2020, January 30). Darwin's Star Orchid. Retrieved April 22, 2020, from https://www.nybg.org/blogs/plant-talk/2012/03/exhibit-news/darwins-garden/darwins-star-orchid/
Traveler's Trees are pollinated by the world's largest pollinator, the Ruffed Lemur!
Source: Unusual Animal Pollinators. (n.d.). Retrieved April 16, 2020, from https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/animals/unusual.shtml
Sensitive Plants are pollinated by a variety of insects, including the bumblebee pictured above. This ticklish beauty has a trick up her sleeve- she has the ability to shy away from pests!
Source: Mimosa pudica. (2019, November 21). Retrieved April 16, 2020, from https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/34202
Flamingo plants attract hummingbirds,
like this Tawney-bellied Hermit!
Source: Justicia carnea. (2019). Retrieved April 16, 2020, from https://conservatoryofflowers.org/bloom/justicia-carnea/
This night-blooming cactus is pollinated by moths and bats. Pollinated flowers produce yummy dragon fruits!
Source: Hylocereus undatus. (2019, November 19). Retrieved April 16, 2020, from https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/27317
These shrimp-like flowers attract many pollinators, including the butterflies and hummingbirds shown above.
Source: Brantley, P. (2012, September 26). A Yellow Gem. Retrieved April 24, 2020, from https://ucanr.edu/blogs/USS/index.cfm?tagname=shrimp plant
The Sword-billed hummingbird pollinates these beautifully-scented flowers!
Source: Skeleton of Sword-billed Hummingbird. (n.d.). Retrieved April 16, 2020, from https://www.pugetsound.edu/academics/academic-resources/slater-museum/biodiversity-resources/birds/skeleton-of-sword-billed-hummi/