Methods of pollination in spices

Methods of pollination in spices

    • Black pepper is a predominantly self pollinated. While various degree of protogyny is encountered .Positive geotropism, spatial arrangement of flowers, sequential ripening of the stigma and non-chronological dehiscence of anthers stimulate selfing. Selfing with occasional outcrossing is the predominant mode of pollination in cultivated bisexual black pepper. It is adapted for pollination by gravitational descending of pollen grains combined with action of rain water or dew drops (Geitonogamy).


    • Though cardamom has bisexual flowers and is self compatible, cross pollination is the rule. Self pollination is hindered due to the slight protrusion of the stigma above the stamens. In cardamom, cross pollination is mediated by activity of the bees (Apis cerana, Apis indica and Apis dorsata) as pollinators. The active foraging of bees is seen in the morning hours of the day which help in increasing the fruit set of cardamom.
    Cardamom Flower
    • Vanilla planifolia usually flowers only once in a year over a period of about 2-3 months. In India the peak flowering period is during January to March. Irrespective of the fact that vanilla flower is self –fertile the floral architecture of vanilla is such that natural pollination is impossible, due to the separation of anther from stigma by the rostellum. A pollinating agent is essential for transferring pollen from anther to stigma. In Mexico and Central America, where vanilla is indigenous some of the flowers are pollinated the bees of the genus Melipona and also hummingbirds. Elsewhere hand pollination is unavoidable for fruit set.
    Vanilla Flower
    Tree spices
    • Nutmeg is a dioecious tree and the chief agent of pollination is wind. In cinnamom flowers are small, numerous in terminal and axillary panicles on current seasons growth. They are cross-pollinated insects are the pollinating agents. In clove the flowers are bisexual and self-pollination is predominant in clove.

    Seed spices

    • In coriander the inflorescence is compound umbel and the hermaphrodite and staminate flowers are small. The flowers are protandrous. Honey bees are the main pollinating agent. In fenugreek the flower is leguminous, which is small and borne on raceme and is extremely difficult to manipulate for artificial emasculation and hybridization. It is a typical self-pollinator in which fertilization occurs within the unopened floral buds (Cleistogamy).
    Seed spices

Last modified: Sunday, 1 April 2012, 9:04 PM