Flowers produce seed. That is their priority. Flowers that do not rely primarily on wind for pollination are colorful and fragrant merely to attract pollinators.

They deteriorate as seed develops after pollination. Many flowers finish bloom between summer and autumn. This can generate an abundance of true-to-type seed to potentially collect for the next season.

Seed of most wild plants is naturally true-to-type. That means that it generally grows into plants that are genetically and physically very similar to the original plants that produced it. Genetic aberration is rare. Unless such aberration is an asset, such as floral color that pollinators prefer, it dissipates within a few generations. This likely continues indefinitely.

Horticulturist Tony Tomeo can be contacted at tonytomeo.com.

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