Anatomy of Common Tree Fruit & Nut Crops
Flower anatomy has important consequences for orchard establishment and management practices in tree fruit and nut crops. The benefits of using supplemental pollinators dramatically outweigh the associated financial and logistical costs in some crops that require outcrossing (almonds), but not in other self-fertile crops (peaches and nectarines). Many components of orchard design, including the use of multiple cultivars within an orchard, the spatial arrangement of cultivars within an orchard block, and the ratio of male to female individuals in dioecious species, are influenced by flower anatomy and pollination requirements.
The image gallery below provides illustrations (taken from the USDA manual # 496: Insect Pollination of Cultivated Crops) of longitudinal sections of many insect pollinated tree fruit flowers. The illustrations of walnut flowers were generously provided by Professor Vito Polito, Department of Plant Sciences at UC Davis.
In addition to the image gallery, the Summary Chart of Floral Biology & Pollination lists traits of common tree fruit and nut crops grown in California.