Flowers

North Dakota’s sunflower superbloom is underway.

See the Incredible Sunflower Superbloom in North Dakota

Fields filled with the cheery yellow flowers reach peak bloom in late summer

A protester holds a sunflower during a London rally in support of Ukraine on March 26, 2022.

Why Sunflowers Are Ukraine's National Flower

People around the world are embracing the bright bloom as a symbol of solidarity with the beleaguered country

Antarctic pearlwort (pictured) , grew and spread five times faster between 2009 and 2018 than growth rates observed between 1960 and 2009

 

Warming Temperatures Are Turning Antarctica Green

Native flowering plant species grew faster and more densely in the last decade than in the previous 50 years combined

Primrose in Iver, Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom. Primroses sometimes open as early as December and are native to the U.K. 

Plants Are Blossoming a Month Early in the U.K. Because of Climate Change

Earlier bloom dates could disrupt relationships between wildlife and cause species to collapse if they can’t adapt quickly enough, researchers warn

People visit the Red Beach, so named due to the Suaeda heteroptera plant which grows across the marshland landscape, in Panjin, China's northeastern Liaoning province.

Moonbows, Starling Migrations and Other Rare Natural Phenomena Worth Traveling For

Being in the right place at the right time makes for an awe-inspiring trip

Seventy percent of all crop species depend on insects for pollination, but a new study shows a decrease in pollinators in areas exposed to air pollution. 

 

Air Pollution Makes It Harder for Insect Pollinators to Find Flowers

Some bug populations were reduced up to 70 percent in areas exposed to diesel exhaust and ozone contamination

One reader wonders why more flowers and fruits aren't blue-hued.

Ask Smithsonian

Why Are So Few Flowers and Fruits Blue? And More Questions From Our Readers

You've got questions. We've got experts

Not just food: Plant chemicals within nectar yield honey that packs a pharmaceutical punch and helps keep bees healthy.

Honey Has Numerous Health Benefits for Bees

From pesticide detox to increased longevity, the pros of the sweet stuff go well beyond simply nourishing the hardworking insects in the hive

American bumblebees are a vital pollinator for wildflowers and crops, and their decline could have severe consequences for the environment.
 

The American Bumblebee Has Nearly Vanished From Eight States

In two decades, the insect's population has declined by nearly 90 percent due to a combination of threats, including habitat loss, pesticides and diseases

Resurrecting the Sublime recreates the scent of Hibiscadelphus wilderianus, which went extinct in 1912.

What Do These Extinct Plants Smell Like?

A multidisciplinary collaboration resurrects three types of flora lost due to 20th-century colonialism

Archaeologists hope the flowers will shed new light on rituals conducted by the ancient residents of Teotihuacán.

Cool Finds

1,800-Year-Old Flower Bouquets Found in Tunnel Beneath Teotihuacán Pyramid

The well-preserved plants were likely used in a ritual ceremony

On the center plant, poking out from the stem is a bent side stalk, which holds up the arm of the plant with a flower.

Scientists Discover a New Plant Organ

The structure, called a cantil, holds up the flower-bearing arm of the thale cress, a long-studied species

Around 1,200 residents stopped by to touch, photograph, and view the Alameda corpse flower. (Not pictured)

Corpse Flower Steals the Spotlight at Abandoned California Gas Station

A local nursery owner grew the rare botanical wonder and shared the bloom with the community, where they could touch and interact with the plant

The southern African orchid Disa forficaria attracts male longhorn beetles.

Extremely Rare Orchid Tricks Horny Beetles Into Carrying Its Pollen

The flower found in southern Africa releases a chemical so irresistible to longhorn beetles that they attempt to mate with it

The National Park Service predicts that peak bloom will take place between April 2 and 5.

Virtually Celebrate Peak Bloom With Ten Fun Facts About Cherry Blossoms

This year's National Cherry Blossom Festival will feature a mix of in-person and online events

A blowfly on lavender flowers. Flies are the unsung heroes of pollination. They visit flowers to stoke up on energy-rich nectar and protein-rich pollen and transport pollen from flower to flower in the process.

How Much Do Flies Help With Pollination?

The much-maligned insect could be the key to ensuring future supplies of many of the world’s favorite foods

While blooming, the Amazonian cactus releases a unique sweet scent similar to honeysuckles and gardenias, but that scent is short-lived and turns foul after two hours.

Education During Coronavirus

Watch First Time-Lapse Footage of a Rare Moonflower Cactus Blossoming

The rare Amazonian cactus blooms only once a year for 12 hours

Only the flower on the far left is real. The rest are made of fungus.

New Research

This Fungus Makes Convincing Fake Flowers From Scratch

The yellow, flower-shaped growths lure in pollinator insects to spread the fungus’ spores

The phenomenon of increasing yearly pollen loads is accelerating.

New Research

Climate Change Is Making Allergy Season Worse

New research finds climate change is making allergy season arrive earlier and bring higher pollen loads in North America

To counter a lack of biodiversity in corpse flowers, horticulturalists took inspiration from “studbooks,” a method used by breeders and zoos to prevent inbreeding

To Save the Corpse Flower, Horticulturalists Are Playing the Role of Matchmakers

Genetic diversity is needed to produce viable plants. Scientists are using animal breeding methods to conserve the titan arum

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