Uses of Flowers | To Humans, Plants and Environment

There are many uses for flowers in daily life, like

  1. Food production
  2. Source of honey
  3. Source of medicine
  4. In pollination and crop yield
  5. Give beauty to the surroundings
  6. Provide Perfumes and scents
  7. Decoration
  8. To prepare dyes
  9. Insect repellents
  10. Support breeding

Flowers are the most beautiful structures on the surface of plants.

They are the organs for the sexual reproduction of plants.

They are formed from a bud, and on fertilization, they are converted into fruits. 

Uses of flowers to man

Since ancient times, humans have been fascinated with their fragrance, color, beauty, and feel.

For the man, it is a symbol of love, holiness, and also a good omen. 

1. Source of food

All the vegetarian food materials we consume are products of flowers.

But there are some that we directly consume as food. 

Examples of edible flowers include

  • Cauliflower,
  • Broccoli
  • Artichoke 
  • Calendula

2. Source of honey

The honey bees form honey from the nectar collected from the nectarines from flowers.

It is a sweet liquid deposited into the honeycombs. These honeycombs are filled with honey by the worker honey bees.

Honey bee collecting honey

Honey bees visit the flowers, suck up the nectar, and deposit it in the comb. The nectar tranforms in the bee’s abdomen and is released as honey.

This honey is used for various purposes in medicine preparation, food, and sweetening agents.

Due to its contents, like phenols and antioxidants, it is used for health purposes.

3. Source of medicine

Some of them possess medicinal properties that are useful in healthcare.

Uses of flowers-Vinca Anti cancer drug
Vinca roseus plant

The flowers of the plant vinca roseus have an alkaloid vincristine, which has anticancer properties. It is used to treat breast cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, etc.

Besides, medicines like atropine and Hyoscyamus and essential oils like eugenol and menthol are obtained from flowers.

Plant flowerMedicinal moleculeMedicinal Uses
Vinca roseaVincristine, vinblsatineFor cancers
DaturascopolamineAnticholinergic drugs for spam relief
Clove budEugenolDental analgesia, antioxidant
HenbaneHyoscine To relieve muscle spasms.
MenthamentholRubefacient, Removes gas by belching.

4. Perfumes and scent

Flowers have some other sort of odor. But most plants have flowers with fragrance.

These flower parts, like the petals and sepals, are used to extract the fragrance in the form of essential oils.

These essential oils are a mixture of volatile oils.

They can be extracted by solvent extraction or steam distillation, Supercritical fluid extraction, ultrasound methods, etc.   

Examples include rose, jasmine, marigold, Hollyhock, etc.

5. Decoration

Potted flowers are widely used for the decoration of homes.

They are also used in places of worship, marriage ceremonies, birthday parties, greetings, etc. 

Their attractiveness, fragrance, and color give them a prominent place in human life.

6. Dyes and colorsaffron color

The petals and other parts are also a source of natural dyes.

Unlike synthetic dyes, these are less harmful for regular use.

More examples of dye from the different plants are in the table below

Dye / ColorFlower of Plant
Red / purpleHibiscus
Pink Rose
Lilac Blooms

7. Insect repellents

Insect repellents have one of the biggest markets. We need insect repellents to keep mosquitoes, cockroaches, and houseflies away.

Synthetic insecticides like organophosphorus poisons have a lethal effect on humans and other animals.

Instead, a natural insect repellant like pyrethrin is used. This pyrethrin is obtained from the plants of Chrysanthemum Cinerariaefolium.

It has a toxic effect on the respiratory system of insects. Thus, when used at homes or workplaces, insects are repelled.

What do flowers do for a plant

For Sexual reproduction by pollination

The main use is to help in sexual reproduction by producing pollen grains as male gametes. 

The wind, animals, or even water carry this pollen.

Once they reach another flower, the pollen enters the female organ and forms a zygote.

This zygote forms an embryo, and this embryo converts into a fruit. These fruits contain seeds that can grow into a new plant when it reaches the soil.

So, a flower facilitates sexual reproduction and thereby helps in plant propagation.

Even in agriculture, artificial pollination helps in higher yield. Hence, male and female plants are given special importance during cultivation.

Uses to Animals and Environment

They help in breeding and support the food cycle in an ecosystem.

9. For breeding of Insects and Birds

Flowers provide food in the form of nectar. So, their growth is good for insects, larvae, and also birds.

Birds lay eggs and hatch them to give birth to young ones. These young ones need food to grow.

The mother bird tries to fetch some insects roaming around. These insects roaming around in search of nectar are caught for feed.

So, we can notice that birds lay eggs when there is a chance for an abundance of insects and larvae.

This, in turn, is dependent on the growth of flowers on the plant. On the whole, the plants support breeding by producing flowers.

10. Beauty to nature

The presence of blooms adds natural beauty to the environment around them. They attract animals like birds, cattle, and even men.

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