STEM Tuesdays: Flower Dissection

Flowers are blooming all around us! Let’s take a closer look and learn about the different parts of a flower.

Materials & Instructions

Let’s get started! Make sure you have your flower diagram with you.

STEP 1: Take a good look at your flower. Let’s see if we can find our first two flower parts: petals and sepals. Does your flower have sepals?

Petals: Petals attract pollinators (like bees). 
Sepals: Sepals protect the flower when it is a tiny bud.
Pollinators: Pollinators are insects and other animals who carry pollen from one flower to the next.

STEP 2: Let’s look inside our flower. If you’d like, you can gently pull off some of the petals. Let’s see if we can find the stamen.

Stamen: The stamen (plural stamens) can carry pollen. There should be several of them inside the flower. Do you see the little part at the very top of the stamen? That is called an anther, and that is where the pollen is stored. The anthers are held up by a long stem-like filament, which is also a part of the stamen.

STEP 3: Next, let’s look for the pistil. It should be in the middle of the stamen and is usually a little bit bigger and taller than the stamen. The pistil has multiple parts to it, just like the stamen. The pistil, one or more carpel, is made up of a stigma, a style, and an ovary.

Pistil: Pistils trap pollen and contain seeds.
Sigma: The sigma is the sticky part at the top. It traps pollen.
Style: The style is the tube that leads from the sigma down to the ovary. 
Ovary: The ovary contains tiny little seeds that are formed when pollinators like bees carry pollen from the anther of one flower to the sigma of another flower.

Great job! Flowers are pretty amazing, aren’t they? Since it is springtime in Georgia, next time you take a walk, see if you can find a flower and find all these different parts!

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