All flowering plants generally have four physical features in common, which are the roots, stem, leaves, and flower or fruit. The life cycle of a flowering plant is circular, starting with a seed to grow a plant to produce more seeds to grow more plants. Flowers on plants are the reproductive organs of the plant. Despite the short lifespan of many flowers, there is a lot going on in the process of creating new seeds or fruit containing new seeds.
The flower or fruit of the plant contains the reproductive organs. A flower can either be monoecious, which means the male and female reproductive parts can be found on one plant, or they can be dioecious, which means the male and female reproductive organs are on different plants. Orchids and Sunflowers are examples of monoecious plants, and willows and poplars are examples of dioecious plants.
Germination is when the seed begins to grow. The root will come out first and travel down into the ground, and then the stem will come out growing up towards the sun. Germination is really the beginning of life for a fertilized seed. For germination to occur, the seed must get just the right amount of air, water and warmth.
Pollination is how the male reproductive parts get the pollen to the female parts for fertilization to happen. Pollen can be spread from plant to plant by the wind or by insects.
Fertilization is when the pollen penetrates the ovule (female reproductive part) and develops into an embryo. During fertilization, the ovule continues to increase in size forming layers around the new seeds. This is how fruit and flowers are formed. The new fertilized seeds are contained within the fruit or flower ready to start a new plant.