Natural pollination

What is the natural pollination? Concept and definition

The natural pollination is the one that is developed naturally, without human intervention (main difference with the artificial pollination).

In other words, €œnatural pollination€ is called to all type of pollination that involves processes in which there is no human intervention. The types of crossed pollination (hidrofilia, entomofilia, anemophily) and the direct pollination (when the plant realises the process by its own means) are examples of natural pollination.

Natural pollination

After thousands of years of evolution, the species have found the specific needs that they must to transport his pollen of natural form and thus to reproduce.

Types of natural pollination

A great variety of types of pollination exists in which the man does not take part (to be human).

Natural pollination

Crossed pollination

The crossed pollination implies that she is an agent - external to the plant the one that becomes the one in charge to transfer pollen grains from the stamen of a flower towards the stigma of another one, with the aim of which takes place the fertilization. Within this division, we found the pollination entom³fila, where who carry out the process they are the insects, the agent older and known pollenizer. Some examples are the bees, butterflies bumblebees or wasps.

In the case of the pollination ornit³fila or ornitofilia, the pollination realised by the birds, the intervening vector more well-known is the hummingbird, but he is not the unique one: also suimangas, the creepers and the hermits pollinate. Generally, the plants that need the birds to reproduce (are almost 300 species those that visit the flowers) have strong colors, as red or the yellow, and its tubular form allows that they store a great amount of nectar.

The pollenizers can also be abiotic vectors. Within this group, we found two cases. On the one hand, the pollination hydrophilia or hidrofilia, where the key factor is the water. Three situations can take place: the water can splash and to transfer grains towards the stigma of the own species, the same pollen can float until arriving at the feminine organ, or moving through water obstacles for would find with the stigmata.

On the other hand, we found in the anemophilous pollination or anemophily a transference - to traverse of the wind without direction nor direction, which is in a great amount of pollen, of small and/or dry and smooth size. One is a process of easy dispersion and transfer.

The crossed pollination happens when pollen is transported from a plant to another one through an external vector of pollination. Crossed pollination exists when insects take part pollenizers (bees, butterflies, wasps), birds (hummingbirds or bats), water or wind.

Direct pollination

The direct pollination happens when the transport of pollen from a plant to another one realises it the same grain, by its own means, without no external help. The route from the stigma towards the stamen is a very successful process because pollen is almost not wasted, since the distance between a place and another one is very short, although the fruits are small, with less pollen and without fragrance nor nectar.

The advantage of this typology is that, in case of absence of agents external pollenizers, the species can reproduce equal.

Up to here, then, we described the pollination processes that are included within the great group of the €œnatural pollination€. This category is against to the call €œartificial pollination€, that it denominates to those processes that involve the intervention of the man. In this type of pollination, which becomes is to pocket the flowers, to gather present pollen in the stamen and to place it in the stigma, soon to cover them and to wait that the fertilization takes place. This can occur to avoid any change in the specific features of a plant, or by the lack of agents natural pollenizers in an agricultural culture.

As a summary:

  • The natural pollination is that one that involves all the processes in which there is no human intervention.
  • An external agent to the plant transfers pollen grains from the stamen of a flower towards the stigma of another one.
  • The natural pollination is divided in two types: the crossed pollination (entomofilia, hidrofilia and anemophily) and the direct pollination (when the plant realises the process by its own means).