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What are flowers and seeds for?

Parts of a flowerParts of a flowerFlowers have male and female parts (sometimes flowers have just one type or the other) which make seeds. The male parts, or stamens, make tiny, dust-like grains called pollen. For the flowering plant to reproduce, its pollen must reach the female parts, or carpels, of a plant of the same kind. This is called pollination.

Parts of a flower

Cross-section through a flowerCross-section through a flower

The male part of a flower is called a stamen. It consists of an anther and filament (stalk). Pollen is produced in the bag-like anther. The female part of a flower is called a carpel. It consists of an ovary, style and stigma. The eggs are in the ovary, the fleshy part at the flower’s base. A taller part, called the style, sticks up from this, with the stigma at its top. Some flowers have a cluster of carpels called a pistil.

A cereal grain, such as wheat or rice, is a kind of fruit, even though it is just a thin skin surrounding the seed.

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