Wood-sorrel: the Alleluia flower | Nature Notes from Dorset

A walk through broad-leaf woodland in early spring will probably reveal wood-sorrel (Oxalis acetosella), a small white flower that one casts an eye to, you say "It's wood-sorrel" and then walk on. Closer inspection reveals more detail, especially the violet veins in the petals. I believe insects, especially bees, can see ultra-violet light and these veins lead to the centre of the plant and so guide any visiting insect to the nectar source and so to the pollen on the stamens. If the bee has already visited a previous plant of the same species then accumulated pollen may be acquired by the stigma (the tube in the centre) from where it finds its way down the tube to the ovaries where the seeds are.

Read more: Wood-sorrel: the Alleluia flower | Nature Notes from Dorset

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