"ROSES RED, VIOLETS BLUE: Why Flowers Have Colors" by Sylvia A. Johnson

"ROSES RED, VIOLETS BLUE: Why Flowers Have Colors"

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Eye-catching, full-color flower photos enhance this adaptation of Colors of Flowers and Insects (published in Japan in 1988). Rather like a high-school botany text, it describes reproduction in spore-producing plants, gymnosperms, and the familiar angiosperms. Specialized terms (pistil, stigma, anthocyanins) appear in bold and are defined in the glossary. Then comes the good stuff: The author describes how flowers appear colored because pigments in their petals absorb some wavelengths of visible light and reflect others, while white flowers contain air spaces that reflect light rays; the purpose of the color is to enhance pollination. Especially interesting are ultraviolet photographs showing flowers as they appear to insects, which can see light in the ultraviolet range. Difficult but fascinating study for students who persevere. Scientific names of plants in the index.

Pub Date: Oct. 6th, 1991
Page count: 64pp
Publisher: Lerner