Gloxinia perennis visited by male Euglossine bees of species Eulaema meriana

Photo by Anton Weber
Growing in nature

Gloxinia perennis is a rare example of a "perfume flower".  The perfume droplets produced by the flower at the base of the corolla are collected by male bees, and used to mark swarm areas and attract females.  During the course of collecting the perfume the bees effect pollination of the flowers.  While rare in the Gesneriaceae, numerous orchids use similar mechanisms for attraction of pollinators.

Another photo of a bee at a flower of this species can be seen here, and whole plants here and here.

 

 

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