|Purple Loosestrife, Lythrum salicaria. Central stigma. On the River Medway near Hartlake Bridge, 25 July 2014.|
I said then that the Purple Loosestrife is unusual in that it has three configurations. I had intended to find examples that year, but I never did. However, recently I visited a spot where there were lots of specimens, and I found examples of all three. At the top of this post you can see a flower with both long and short anthers, and a mid-length stigma.
It's also clear that the different lengths of stamens have differently coloured pollen, yellow on the short ones and a dark green on the longer ones. If I find out more about that I will write it up.
|Purple Loosestrife, Lythrum salicaria. Short stigma. On the River Medway near Hartlake Bridge, 25 July 2014.|
I only got one rather scrappy shot of the third configuration ...
|Purple Loosestrife, Lythrum salicaria. Long stigma. On the River Medway near Hartlake Bridge, 25 July 2014.|
So I was pleased with this result! I found a paper on line that said experimental results showed that all the pollen can fertilise any plant, but pollinating within the same flower resulted in lower fertility.
Not all visiting insects can be regarded as potential cross-pollinators.
|Hoverfly, Sphaerophoria species, female, on Purple Loosestrife, Lythrum salicaria.|
On the River Medway, 25 July 2014.