How is pollen spread from plant to plant?

When winged insects look for nectar - which is a sugar water-like substance found in flowers - they typically climb around the reproductive organs of flowers to get it. Since each flower has only so much nectar, insects make the circuit, going from flower to flower to get their fill.

As they make their rounds, the sticky pollen spores stuck to the insects' limbs are transferred to the pistils of other plants where they land, resulting in the miracle of cross-pollination.

However, not all of the pollen winds up on the pistils. Some stays with the insect.

When honeybees buzz back to their hives, pollen spores can be found in and on them.

Bees produce honey by regurgitating the nectar and pollen into their mouths. Enzymes break down the nectar, which becomes simple sugars. Bees then spit the ensuing mixture into individual honeycombs and then they evaporate much of the water it contains by flapping their wings over it. They then cover the honeycomb with wax to use it for food later, unless a beekeeper raids the hive to remove the honey-filled combs it holds.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.