Tuesday, 25 March 2014


Most flowers have petals in their outermost whorl (ring of organs). They use these to attract pollinators. Oenothera speciosa 'Siskyou' (below)  is a good example of such a flower. 

Oenothera speciosa 'Siskyou', taken at Polhill Garden Centre in Cambridge.

Euphorbia plants have bracts in their outermost whorl, to attract pollinators. The photo below shows Euphorbia rigida, a good example of this phenomenon. 
Euphorbia rigida, taken at the Cambridge Botanic Gardens.

In close-up the sexual organs of the flower can clearly be seen, surrounded by the bracts.

Euphorbia rigida, taken at the Cambridge Botanic Gardens.

Here is another example of a Euphorbia plant, with the same flower structure and bracts in place of petals. In this case the variety is not known.

A Euphorbia plant photographed at St Luke's Church in Cambridge. 

The photos of Euphorbia rigida were taken at the Cambridge Botanic Gardens, without a professional photography permit. They are not for sale, but may be downloaded and used by anyone for non-profit-making purposes. If you do use the photographs, I would love to hear from you so that I can link to your site and put the information on my photography CV. 

All views expressed are the opinion of the author only. They do not represent the views of any organisation or institute that she may be affiliated with.

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