Pollination – Definition, Examples and its Types

Pollination is the process of transfer of pollen grains from the anther of a flower to the stigma of the same flower or another flower of usually same species. It is an essential function and a prerequisite for ensuring seed set.

Types of Pollination

The two basic modes of pollination are :

  1. Self-pollination
  2. Cross-pollination

1) Self-Pollination

self-pollination

Transfer of pollen grains from the anther to the stigma of the same flower or another flower on the same plant is said to be self-pollination.

Self Pollination may be autogamous or geitonogamous

Autogamy

When pollen grains from the anther are transferred to the stigma of the same flower, it is known as autogamy.

Examples: Viola (common pansy), Oxalis (wood sorrel), impatiens (balsam) and Commelina

Geitonogamy

When pollens of a flower pollinate any other flower present on the same plant, it is said to be geitonogamy.

Examples: Toadflax, maize, banana

Advantages and Disadvantages of Self-Pollination

Adventages

Self-pollination, which leads to self-fertilization has greater reliability, particularly in those cases where individuals of a species are few and separated by long distances. it has the advantage that the process is not dependent on any external agency for the delivery of pollen to the stigmas. Hence there are fewer chances of failure of pollination.

Disadvantages

Continuous self-pollination (self-fertilization) is an extreme form of inbreeding and can result in loss of vigour in offspring. Furthermore, useful character is not introduced in the progeny.

Also Read About : Parthenocarpy

2) Cross-Pollination

croos-pollination

Transfer of pollen grains from the anther of a flower from one plant to the stigma of the flower on another plant is called cross-pollination. Cross-pollination is a device to bring about genetic recombination and variation.

Types of cross-pollination

  • Anemophily (Pollination by wind): The transfer of pollen grains through wind is known as anemophily.
  • Hydrophily (Pollination by water): The transfer of pollen grains through water is known as hydrophily.
  • Entomophily (Pollination by insects): The transfer of pollen grains through the agency of insects is known as entomophily.
  • Ornithophily (Pollination by birds): The transfer of pollen grains by birds is known as ornithophily.
  • Cheiropterophily (Pollination by bats): The transfer of pollen grains by bats is known as cheiropteriphily.
  • Malacophily (Pollination by snails and slugs): The transfer of pollen grains by snails and slugs is known as malacophily.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Cross-Pollination

Advantages

Cross-pollination produces genetic recombination’s resulting new useful characters in the progeny. Besides, it increased the adaptability of plants to new environments. Progeny usually produced are more healthy.

Disadvantages

Since cross-pollination is dependent on external agencies, a chance factor is always involved. Moreover, it involves a lot of energy in producing a large number of pollen grains. Since cross-pollination involves the recombination of genes, sometimes undesirable characters are introduced in a useful variety.

FAQ’s Regarding Pollination

What are Pollinators?

Pollinators are the animals who carry the pollen grains from the male flower to the stigma of the female flowers. Like-Bees, Butterflies etc.

What is pollination?

Pollination is the process of transfer of pollen grains from the male flower to the stigma of the same flower or the different flower of the same species.

How many types of pollination occur?

There is two types of pollination present in nature: 1) Self-pollination: In self-pollination transfer of pollen grains from the anther to the stigma of the same flower take place. and in 2) Cross-pollination: Transfer of pollen grains from the anther of a flower to the stigma of the flower on another plant take place.

Can plants pollinate without bees?

Yes plants can get pollinated without bees, as there are so many pollinators are present who can perform the action of the bees.

What are the advantages of self-pollination?

Adventages of self-pollination are :

  • Self-pollination has greater reliability.
  • In Self-pollination less number of pollen grains required.
  • It has less chance of failure of pollination.

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