When an animal visits the plant looking for food, the pollen rubs up against its body and some sticks to it. Then, when the animal moves on, it transfers that pollen to the next plant. A Partnership T he relationship between pollinators (insects and other animals) and pollenizers (the plants that supply the pol- len) is one of the most important in nature. Plants depend on pollinators to fertilize them so they can make seeds. To make sure insects and other animals stop by, plants have developed different methods to attract them. The main way is through the use of flowers. You already know that flowers come in all shapes, sizes, smells, and colors. That makes your garden more interesting, but plants actually do not care what you think—they are much more concerned about what their pollinators think. Their flowers act like nature’s billboards, designed to get animals to stop and, well, smell the flowers, so to speak. For their part, insects and other animals don’t spend time pollinating just to rack up some volunteer service. They don’t even know that when they visit a plant, they’re helping pollinate it. They’re in it for another reason: food. Pollen itself is a good source of protein, vitamins, and min-


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