7. Team G6 (Azalea)



Azaleas are flowering shrubs comprising two of the eight subgenera of the genus Rhododendron, Tsutsuji (evergreen) and Pentanthera(deciduous). Azaleas bloom in spring in the Northern hemisphere and in winter in the Southern hemisphere. Their flowers could last for several weeks. Shade tolerant, they prefer living near or under trees. As an favourite subject of cultivation, this species often comes with different colours and morphology.

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Azaleas


Floral Morphology

Averages

Flower length: 33.3 mm
Flower width: 39.7 mm
Petal number: 9
Anther size: 22.4 mm
Style size: 23.9 mm
Petal size: 26.4 mm
Number of anthers: 5.6


Anthers
Anthers

Anthers with white sticky pollens at the top.


Observations

The anther and style size were similar to one another. The style on average was 1.5 mm taller then the anther. The petals were pink in color and there were average 9 petals per flower.
On average, there were 5 flowers per stem. The flowers were closely packed together and were placed at the top of the stem. This arrangement increases the visibility and accessibility for the pollinators.
When placed under UV light, no specific fluorescing pattern emerged.




Pollen Morphology



g6 pollen.jpg
g6 pollen.jpg

Stained pollen grain in light pink colour

Observations:

Pollen grain is stained pink in colour.
Irregular, circular shaped pollen grain. 3D structure.

Nectar Characterization


After sampling Azalea flowers, we concluded that there is no nectar found in the stigma. Since it is a domesticated plant, the gene of nectar production could be bred out. They also bloom at different time( as early as February or as late as September), when in this period of time the bees are not out looking for nectar. Therefore, there is no nectar-pollen reward system found in this plant.