Test your knowledge of flowers. Click on the name of the flower from the multiple-choice list. A new flower will be shown a few seconds after each click.
Flowering plants emerged in the Cretaceous Period approximately 125 million years ago during the time of the dinosaurs. Flowers are the reproductive organs of plants (angiosperms). Most flowers have both male and female organs. The female part is the pistil which is usually located in the center of the flower and is made up of the stigma, style and ovary. The stigma is the sticky end at the top of the pistil. The style is a tubelike structure that connects the stigma to the ovary containing female egg cells called ovules.
The male parts of the flower are called stamens and usually surround the pistil. A stamen is made up of an anther that produces pollen and a filament that supports the anther. The pollen contains the male reproductive cells of the plant. Fertilization occurs when pollen lands on the stigma and travels down to the ovary to combine with the ovules. Each fertilized ovule becomes a seed, and the ovary generally develops into a fruit.
The leaf-like sepals protect the developing bud of the flower until the petals open. Flowers announce their presence through their bright colors and by releasing aromas that attract pollinators (animals that carry pollen between the flowers). The shape of the flowers also determines which pollinators can get access to the nectar that collects at the base of the flowers. The most common pollinators are bees, butterflies, birds and bats.