Thursday, October 27, 2011

Cool Stuff I Learned From My 3rd Grader

My daughter has a science test today. I was helping her prepare and learned some pretty cool stuff: Plants (many species at least) possess both male and female gametes. Does this make them hermaphroditic? I don't know. The pollen, which is the male gamete, comes from a structure called the stamen. The stamen releases the pollen and it falls onto the pistil. I guess this is analagous to the sperm entering the female reproductive tract in an animal species, like humans. The pistil then somehow forms a tube (Fallopian-like?) and the pollen is transported to an ovary. The ovary contains ovules that have eggs. Perhaps ovules are lock ovarian follicles. When the pollen fertilizes the egg, the egg becomes a seed. The seed then becomes an embryo which can-but does not always--grow into a full fledged plant. Very interesting. I guess life on Earth is more similar than dissimilar.