So you adore flowers, but have you ever thought about why different flowers are the colours they are? Why don't all flowers have the same colour?
The variety of different flower colours that occur naturally is remarkable, from shades of creamy white to vivid hues of orange, from speckled to striped.
Why are flowers are so colourful? According to one popular theory, flower colour is most likely to be an attempt by the flower to woo their pollen suppliers. There's a lot of research to show that bees prefer blue or even violet flowers for example.
A study published in 2015 by the Royal Society journal Biology Letters finds that bees are able to learn which flowers to collect nectar and pollen from, purely based on the colour of the blooms. So for rare plants, it's thought it could be a benefit to mimic the colour of a common one, as otherwise they risk being ignored by bees ‘trained’ on the common species. On the other hand, it might be an advantage to stand out in the crowd?!
We know that insects see colour differently. Ultraviolet light, invisible to us, uncovers colours and patterns on flowers designed to act as "landing strips" or arrows, guiding the insects to the right spot.
Still, it seems that scientists may not have found all the answers to the mystery of flower colours. They may be putting on their best display, trying to attract bees, butterflies, birds and other flowers - or perhaps it's all for you and me?
To get your fix of the best fresh flowers, take a look at our range of colourful creations by the talented Papamoa florists at Arrange Floral Design.