Learning focus: how plants reproduce
Today’s science is all around plants and their reproduction from BBC Bitesize.
Don’t forget, if you’re lucky enough to have a garden, or even on your daily exercise walk, you can go and look closely at some plants yourself for a real observation!
Find videos here on the BBC site: https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/articles/zrcpscw
Bees and flowers Lots of plants rely on insects like bees to reproduce. To make a seed, a flower needs to be pollinated. Pollen from one flower needs to travel to another. Bees are very important for carrying the pollen between flowers. To encourage bees to visit them, flowers have colourful petals and an attractive scent. Some flowers give the bees a sugary reward called nectar too. It’s not just plants that need bees; we need them too. Without them we’d have very little food. Lots of our fruit and vegetables come from plants that are pollinated by bees.
Plant reproduction The flowers attract insects, the smell from the nectaries and the prettiness of the petals draws the insects in towards them. As they dig for the sweet nectar all the pollen rubs off on their bodies from the stamen. The nectaries are right at the bottom to make sure this happens. Once the little bee has had her fill she'll fly off to find more nectar. When the bee digs into the next flower the pollen on her body rubs off onto the stigma of the new flower. This is called pollination. When the pollen lands on the stigma it travels down the style towards the ovary. Once the pollen reaches the ovary it hopes to find an ovule to attach to. This is called fertilisation. This is the beginning of a new seed. It is absorbed into the receptacle and fruit starts to form from the seed. It is called sexual reproduction. When the fruit is ready, the plants release the seeds which get moved into the soil. Seeds can be blown by the wind, or eaten by animals and then pooped out in a different place. They can explode and scatter themselves, float on water, fall from flowers and trees and they can also stick to animals' fur and be moved. Once they are dispersed in the soil they can create new plants.
Now have a go at the activities on the BBC website: (https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/articles/zrcpscw) or go and look for a real plant outside, sketch it and label the parts using the diagram/labels below.