What attracts bees to a flower? 5 Things You Didn’t Know

The reason insects visit a flower is for feeding on nectar usually. Insects visit the flower for feeding on nectar usually. In an attempt for feeding the nectar, they bring about pollination.

These flowers are called entomophilous flowers such as orchids and antirrhinums. By their brightly colored pastels, edible pollen, and sweet smell, the flowers attract insects.

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However, if a flower becomes infested with herbivores such as caterpillars, the herbivores attract beneficial insects like parasitic wasps with the help of scent signals from their leaves. The wasps lay their eggs in the caterpillars and it will kill the parasites.

Floral and foliar scents can mutually reduce their attractiveness to wasps and other insects. Therefore a flowering plant has to consider if the plant should use its resources to attract pollinating insects and by that extend for reproduction or if the plant should invest in defense against herbivores.

1) Which part of the flower attracts insects for pollination?

Flowering plants have several different parts which are important in pollination. The male parts of a flower are called stamens which produce a sticky powder called pollen. These parts of a flower attract insects and birds for pollination.

A flower also has a female part which is called the pistil. The top of the female part of the flowers is called stigma and it’s often sticky compared to the male part of the flower.

The pollination of a flower is very important because it leads to the creation of new seeds, that will grow into new plants.

Before a flower actually can be pollinated, the pollen must be moved from a stamen to the stigmat. However, when the pollen from a plant’s stamen is transferred to the exact same plant stigma, it will be called self-pollination.

If pollen from a plant’s stamen is transferred to a different plant stigma, it’s called cross-pollination. If a flower gets cross-pollinated, it will produce stronger plants. But you have to be aware that the plants have to be of the same species. If we have to take an example, pollen from a rose or even an apple tree will not work together.

2) What benefit will a bee get from the flower?

Bee makes excellent pollinators because they spent collecting pollen most of their life. It’s a source of protein that they can feed to their developing offspring.

When a bee lands on a flower, the hair on the body of the bee attracts the pollen grains through electrostatic forces. The stiff hair on the body of the bee enables them to groom the pollen into specialized brushes or pockets on both their legs and body. Then the bee will carry the pollen back to their nest for their developing offspring.

You will often see that an individual bee tends to focus on one kind of flower before it will fly to another flower. This means that it’s more likely that pollen from one flower will be transferred to another flower of the same species by one particular bee.

A lot of plants today and the plants you usually find in your garden require this kind of pollen distribution called cross-pollination, in order to be able to produce viable seeds.

However, since the collecting of pollen requires a lot of energy by the bees many flowers attract the bees by rewarding them nectar and a mixture of water and sugars produced by the flower.

3) How do bees live?

Most of the bee species dig nests in either soil or utilize plants.

However, some will be nesting in a tree or other preexisting cavities. It depends depending on what bee species it is.

Bumblebees usually nest in abandoned underground burrows and feral honey bees – the bees that produce honey usually nest in tree hollows.

Bees use a variety of different materials to build their nests such as pithy stems, solid trees, and other similar materials. The material has to be solid, but also not too heavy, as the bees must be able to fly with the materials. Other bees line their nest cells with a waxy material they produce themselves.

4) Why insects are attracted to flowers?

When most of us see a field covered in colored flowers, we will see it as a beautiful sight. It is the flowers that will use a number of tricks to attract eager pollinators like different species of bees.

Insects like bees er attracted to flowers because flowers are the advertising signs that draw insect pollinators to the sexual organs of plants. Although every flower may differ in appearance and colors, all flowers have the same basic structures.

The male part which carries pollen is called the stamen and the female part of the structure of a flower is called the pistil. Pollen is collected in the stigma of the top of the pistil in a sticky pad and at the bottom of the pistil is the ovule, where seeds can be formed and stored. However, all of these parts of the structure are surrounded by petals of various sizes and shapes.

5) Are bees attracted to colorful flowers?

You need to take into account that different varies of insects such as butterflies or bees see color differently and some flowers may even have some colors, that we as humans can’t see, but the insects are able to see for example ultraviolet markings.

However, color is not the only thing that attracts insects. Scents are often important and can attract a lot of different insects to your garden.

Flowers that contain a blue and yellow color attract bees because those colors can easily be perceived by the bees.

Darker colors like red and brown appear black to bees and because black color is the absence of color bees will not be naturally attracted to flowers with brown or red hues. Meaning that bees don’t like dark colors.

Also, you have to have in mind that not all flowers are attractive to bees because their shape is not conducive to pollination, which is important and appealing for a bee.