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Stylidium graminifolium [Grass Trigger Plant]


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#1 DaveO

    Aussie Bunyip

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Posted 11 February 2014 - 03:33

Oldfield, D. 2013. Stylidium graminifolium Sw. (Stylidiaceae) Grass Trigger Plant. Flowers photographed in visible and ultraviolet light. http://www.ultraviol...-trigger-plant/



Maldon, Victoria, Australia
Gower road, Maldon Historic Reserve
5 November 2013
Australian Native Wildflower

Comment
Stylidium graminifolium is the most widespread species of trigger plant. The flowers have five petals, although only four are conspicuous with the fifth being reflexed and located behind the “trigger” which protrudes from the throat of the floral tube. The trigger consists of two stamens and the style fused together into a column. The trigger remains cocked until an insect probes the flower and then springs upwards and deposits pollen on the head or back of the insect which then transfers the pollen to another flower.
In the first visible light photograph the trigger of the left-hand lower flower is in the process of re-setting, the second visible light photograph taken a second later shows the trigger has been reset and is now below the level of the flower. The first UV photograph shows the cocked triggers on the right-hand flowers and the second UV photograph shows enlarged detail of the trigger.
Trigger plants provide hours of amusement to Australian children by triggering them with grass stalks.


Visible Light: Pentax K-5 Full Spectrum Modification, Quartz 105 mm f/4.0 lens, Metz 15 MS-1 flash, 1/180 s @ f/16 ISO 200, B+W UV/IR Cut Filter.
Attached Image: Stylidium_graminifolium_Vis.jpg
Image Reference: DO51721
Attached Image: Stylidium_graminifolium_Vis_Reset.jpg


Ultraviolet Light: Pentax K-5 Full Spectrum Modification, Quartz 105 mm f/4.0 lens, Nikon SB-14 flash, 1/180 s @ f/16 ISO 200, Baader UV-Pass Filter.
Attached Image: Stylidium_graminifolium_UV.jpg
Image Reference: DO51730

Attached Image: Stylidium_graminifolium_UV_Extract.jpg


References:
Elliott, W.R. and Jones, D.L. Encyclopaedia of Australian Plants suitable for cultivation, Lothian 2010, Volume 9, p. 88.


Atlas of Living Australia http://bie.ala.org.a...m+graminifolium


Published 11 February 2014

Edited by DaveO, 23 June 2014 - 01:46.


#2 Andrea B.

    Desert Dancer

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 13:39

I love this flower's pollen hammer" which conks the invading insect !!
Sometime you will have to make a little video for us which shows the action.
Andrea G. Blum
Often found hanging out with flowers & bees.

#3 DaveO

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 23:58

I didn't realize until I looked at the images on my computer that I had captured the first one with the trigger on the way back to being re-set. The action is very quick and the flowers wave about in the breeze quite a bit as well. The UV images show that the stalks are covered in glandular hairs. More work to do on this next Spring, they are pretty common.