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  • Carpenter bee with pollen collected from Night-blooming cereus, paniniokapunahoa, papipi pua (Cactaceae)
    in

    Plant-insect relationships, a double-edged sword

    Flowering plants have had an intim­ate rela­tion­ship with insects for mil­lions of years. Indeed, this is often cited as an example of co-evolution , par­tic­u­larly with regards to the flowers and their pol­lin­a­tion by the insects. However, this has also given parasites millions of years to adapt too. More

  • Hawkmoth, Manduca sexta
    in

    Ecologists make their own flowers to study moths

    Thanks to JSTOR Global Plants for pointing to an interesting paper in Functional Ecology, Shape matters: corolla curvature improves nectar discovery in the hawkmoth Manduca sexta. The research looks at how the the 3D structure of a flower helps guide hawkmoths towards nectar. Scents and sight can guide a pollinator, but to what extent does […] More

  • Image: Jan Moninckx, Moninckx Atlas, 1686–1709.
    in

    A blooming marvellous innovation

    I know that this year’s British summer hasn’t been much to write home about (and you would be writing home to the UK– who would have sojourned in that sodden isle given the choice?). But at least the traditional hay fever (seasonal allergic rhinitis – or pollinosis if caused generally by pollen) hasn’t been too […] More

  • Cretaceous flowers of Ericales
    in

    Cretaceous flowers of Ericales

    The rapid increase in knowledge of the fossil record of angiosperms in the past 30 years has provided important evidence on the antiquity of different lineages. Schönenberger et al. add to the fossil record of asterids with the description of an exceptionally well-preserved flower from Georgia, USA, from the Late Cretaceous named here as Glandulocalyx […] More