Pollinating Plants

David in our garden in Coleman, TX where I had to hand-pollinate our corn.

Pollinating Plants is simply making the female pregnant so the plants can propagate or reproduce. This pregnancy results in fruit being produced.

Cross-pollination happens between plants when the wind blows the pollen around. Some pregnancies are made possible by bees and other insects. Animals can also pollinate plants such as the humming bird. Some plants are self-pollinating. Some plants use smell as a way to attract a pollinator while others use colors to attract a pollinator. Red is a color that birds seem attracted too since they do not have a sense of smell.

Hybridization is the scientific process of taken pollens from different species and pollinating other species of the same type.

An example would be to take the pollen of a large green pepper and put pollen on a small red pepper in order to get a large red pepper. I am giving the way down watered version.

If you want to save seeds from season to season and grown them, then they have to be seeds that are not a hybrid. But most of the seeds we get today are hybrids that have been designed to limit disease, counter insects and produce more and larger fruit. The package or webpage (at least ours will) will tell you whether it is a hybrid or not.

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Propagation also has a direct effect on what can be planted in a green house.

For vegetables, the greenhouse needs to be opened so bees can do their job and the wind can blow the air-borne pollens around and the flower.

And in some cases, like for tomato plants you many need to shake the plant. Sometimes it does not hurt to shake the tomato plant even when it is outside to ensure pollen is spread to the flowers.

Each plant we plant has a section on how to best pollinate it so it will produce the most and best fruit.

We do not have to worry about how we plant our plants. Beans will not cross propagate with peppers and so on. We cannot take the sperm of a male rabbit and fertilize a pig embryo and get who knows what. The same works with our plants. This should not be a concern.

But pollen of the same variety will pollinate within its family tree. One type of squash will pollinate another type.

If you are saving seeds, planting the different varieties about 200 feet apart should keep them from cross pollinating.

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