SEM of opium poppy pollen grain

SEM of opium poppy pollen grain

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Credit: DR JEREMY BURGESS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: False-colour scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of pollen grains germinating on the stigma of the opium poppy, Papaver somniferum. Eight pollen grains are seen, clustered around a finger-like projection, part of the opium flower's stigma. Several pollen tubes are visible, notably the one encircling the top of the stigma before it grows down towards the base of the flower. The pollen grain at bottom right has not germinated; it retains the surface furrow characteristic of the species. Once germination occurs, the grain swells & the furrow disappears. At least 5 of the grains have germinated & will give rise to 5 seeds. Magnification: x350 at 6x4.5cm size. Reference: MICROCOSMOS, figure 4.35, page 83.

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Keywords: botany, false-coloured, nature, opium poppy, papaver somniferum, plant, plants, pollen tube, reproduction, reproductive, stigma

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