Inflorescences HortBotany Solitary Flowers
Date conversion 16.09.2018 Size 7,52 Kb.
Inflorescences Some species of plants produce solitary flowers. Solitary flowers are are borne singly and separate from one another. Saucer Magnolia solitary flowers Solitary Flowers Another example of a plant that bears solitary flowers is Bloodred Geranium. Many solitary flowers on Bloodred Geranium ( Geranium ) sanguineum What is an inflorescence? In other species of plants many, small flowers are borne together in dense clusters called inflorescences. There are many types of inflorescences. Each type of inflorescence is determined by how the flowers are arranged. Inflorescences are a useful plant ID tool. Common Inflorescences Spike Raceme Panicle Umbel Corymb Cyme Composite Head Spike Individual flowers are sessile (without pedicels). Lower flowers open first. Indeterminate. Spike Gladiolus ‘Lavadandy’ flower spike (image courtesy of Columbia View Gladiolus) Raceme Individual flowers have pedicels. Pedicels can vary in length from species to species. Lower flowers open first. Indeterminate. Raceme Itea virginica, Virginia Sweetspire produces dense, pubescent racemes. The flowers have short pedicels and the inflorescence resembles a spike. Raceme Dicentra spectabilis, Bleeding Heart, produces a one-sided raceme of pink, heart-shaped flowers. Panicle A highly branched inflorescence consisting of many, repeating units. Panicles can be made of many spikes, racemes, corymbs, or umbels. Indeterminate. Panicle Panicle Aesculus glabra, Ohio Buckeye, produces 4-7” long panicles. This tree is located near the Kirkwood library. Umbel Individual flower pedicels all originate from the same spot on the peduncle. Outer flowers open first. Indeterminate. Umbel Allium ‘Jade Eyes’, image courtesy of Breck’s. Often, umbels are globe-shaped like this one. Corymb Somewhat similar to the umbel. Individual flower pedicels are attached to the peduncle at different points. Often flat-topped. Outer flowers open first. Indeterminate. Corymb Pyrus calleryana, Callery Pear, is a beautiful, spring-flowering tree covered with corymbs of white flowers. Cyme In real life, cymes tend to be flat or convex shaped. The inner flowers open first. Determinate. Cyme Cymes are often compound as shown in the illustration to the right. Cyme Cyme Viburnum dentatum, Arrowwood Viburnum, produces cymes of white flowers that are not fragrant. Corymbs vs. Cymes Often these two types of inflorescences can look a lot alike. Remember that corymbs are indeterminate, they continue to elongate as the season progresses. Cymes are determinate and do not continue to elongate as the growing season progresses. Also, the inner flowers of cymes open first. Composite Head Composite Head Helianthus annus, Sunflower, produces a large composite head. After pollination and fertilization, each disk flower becomes a single-seeded fruit. Composite Head Echinaceae purpurea, Purple Coneflower (image courtesy of Wildflower Farm). Composite head with purple ray flowers and brown disk flowers. Review Time! What’s this? What’s this? What’s this? What’s this? What’s this? What’s this? What’s this? The End
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