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Sulfur deficiency causes pale and small flowers, which is bad news

The flowers are not only beautiful, but also the beginning of apples and tomatoes. It is of great importance to insects. But what makes a flower good? And why exactly does it fail?

Sulfur deficiency causes pale and small flowers, which is bad news

For flowers, it is very important that they are clearly visible to pollinators. It even happens that the flowers change color according to the type of pollinators in their environment. Now, new research shows that the amount of pigment also plays a major role. You might think: if you want to be seen, the best is as far as possible. But this turned out to be not the case. Having too much pigment can also make the flower invisible enough.

In addition, color can also be affected – in the case of yellow flowers – if the plant receives too little of some nutrients.

Sulfur deficiency

This appears to be the case with sulfur. In flowers of other colors, a lack of sulfur also has negative consequences. The flowers are smaller, deformed and there are fewer. Even pollen grains are different in composition. These are all changes that will likely not benefit the vaccination process.

Well, the flowers didn’t have that problem when we experienced acid rain. Then there was enough sulfur. Do we have to go back to that time? of course no. Another solution must be found. Fertilization is possible, provided it is done responsibly, but what can also be considered is growing plants that can tolerate less sulfur.

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In this audio you can hear Casper van der Kooi and Ties Ausma from the University of Groningen. Here you will find a paper on dye in flowers: How much pigment should the flowers contain? Flowers with moderate pigmentation have the highest color contrast. Here is a question about sulfur deficiency: Flowers appear to suffer from sulfur deprivation.

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