Autumn Hawkbit Pollen - 1
The wild flower, Autumn Hawkbit, is a species of Dandelion in the genus, Taraxacum which is a member of the family, Asteraceae. The flower grows as a weed all across Europe and North America and blossoms in the Autumn time. The flower is the reproductive organ of a plant and in the case of Dandelion, it is a composite of many small flowers called florets.
In this SEM image, a pair of Dandelion pollen grains can be seen adhered to the cells comprising the style of the floret. Pollen grains are the sex cells at the heart of the reproductive cycle. They contain the plants sperm and its food source. Once a pollen grain is transferred to the stigma of another flower of the same kind, by the beetles that inhabit the flower or bees for example, sperm will awaken from dormancy and the process of pollination can begin.