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pollen grains
process of fertilization
An Overview On Pollen Grains
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An Overview on Pollen Grains

Pollen grains are male reproductive particles of plant. Pollen grains are usually yellow but occasionally you can also see white, red, purple or brown pollen grains. These particles are so small in size that there is need of magnification for their detailed structure study. In flowering plants, pollens are produced in the anther sac. This anther sac is located at the tip of the filament of the stamen. However, in the case of the conifer plants, pollen is present in male cones.

Pollen grains and reproduction:

Pollen plays a very important role in the process of fertilization. They are actually male gametophytes (haploid cell structure). When mother pollen starts process of meiosis inside anther of the seed plant, half the number of chromosomes of parent plants are transferred to each of the pollen grain. Thus, nuclei of pollen contain half characteristic chromosomes of the parent plant. When a pollen combine with female part of the plant, this half number combines with the female chromosome share and a new individual plant starts developing.

Structure and formation:

Pollen is produced in microsporangium. Microsporangium is present in the anther of angiosperm flower and in male cone of conifers and other seed plants. Each pollen contain two types of cells

• Vegetative cells - these are non reproductive cells, in most of the plants there is single vegetative cell whereas in seed plants there are several.

• Generative cell - these are reproductive cells with two nuclei. One of the nuclei is known as tube nucleus. This tube nucleus produces pollen tubes. Whereas the other one is known as generative nuclei. This generative nucleus divides to form two sperm cells.

After pollination:

After pollination, the process of germination and fertilization begins. The pollen grain starts germination on the surface of stigma of the pistil. This germinated pollen grain thus produces a tube that leads its way down to the ovule present in the ovary. This path of the tube passes through style of the flower. The ovary is located at the base of the pistil. There the two different cells fuse with two different parts of the flower. Sperm nucleus fuse one cell with egg nucleus, this fusion results in to the formation of plant embryo. The other cell fuse with polar nuclei and endosperm is produced. Endosperm serves as a possible food source for the new embryo plant.

Pollen a carrier of ecological information:

According to the research conducted by a Russian biologist, pollen that successfully makes its way to the pistil of flower can transmit ecological information. Apart from this, the successful pollen also regulates evolutionary plasticity of a plant. Evolutionary plasticity is the ability of a plant to change its phenotype with possible change in the environment. If there are plenty of pollen grains, that mean means the plant is present in full favorable conditions. Like

• It is present in middle of its natural range,

• It is in ideal growing condition, with favorable weather

• And a number of male plants are present nearby.

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