Forget me not : Myosotis sylvatica
Plant : The wood forget me not plant is slender, with tiny blue flowers and is a magnet for many species of insect, including bees. The plant has a rosette base, with slender branching stems, alternate leaves and flower heads of ten to twenty individual flowers. It grows to 40 cm high. The wood forget me not grows in damp woodland on fertile soil.
Flower : The wood forget me not flowers in May and June. Each flower is pink in bud. The flower opens to 8 mm across and has five flat blue petals and joined sepals. The flower has five stamens and the ovary is superior.
Pollen : The pollen load of the forget me not is yellow. The grain is one of the smallest at only 6um long and is dumbbell shape. There are six two furrow apertures in the central section. The surface is smooth and the exine is thin.
Rex Sawyer’s book, Pollen Identification for beekeepers is really helpful for understanding the features of pollen. In Bob Maurer’s book, Practical Microscopy for Beekeepers, he shows some simple techniques for making up pollen slides. Click here to return to plants for bees index.