Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Plants, Soils, and Climate

Committee Chair(s)

Marion W. Pedersen


Marion W. Pedersen


Herman H. Wiebe


Since the early Eighteenth Century the significance of nectar secretion has been debated. Some have reasoned that it is reabsorbed into the plant and used as energy for the developing embryo while others believe it is a waste product which attracts pollinating insects.

It has been suggested (Brink and Cooper, 1947) that the nutrient supply to developing ovules is a major factor in the development of seed. Also, alfalfa fields pollinated by pollen-collecting bees produce greater seed yields than those pollinated by nectar collectors (Bohart, Nye, and Levin, 1955). It is a well-known fact that more flowers are tripped by the pollen collectors, but it is debatable whether the nectar not taken by the pollinators has any influence on the quality or amount of seed set. It is then necessary to find whether the nectar not taken by bees is used by the plant before studies can be made to show its effect on seed and forage yields.

The object of this study was to treat flowers of several families with C14 labeled sucrose and determine by the use of autoradiograms if sugars can be absorbed by nectaries, where the sugars are translocated, and when absorption takes place.