Functional optics of glossy buttercup flowers.

Details

Serval ID
serval:BIB_7C25F3D522AA
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Functional optics of glossy buttercup flowers.
Journal
Journal of the Royal Society, Interface
Author(s)
van der Kooi C.J., Elzenga J.T., Dijksterhuis J., Stavenga D.G.
ISSN
1742-5662 (Electronic)
ISSN-L
1742-5662
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2017
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
14
Number
127
Pages
0
Language
english
Abstract
Buttercup (Ranunculus spp.) flowers are exceptional because they feature a distinct gloss (mirror-like reflection) in addition to their matte-yellow coloration. We investigated the optical properties of yellow petals of several Ranunculus and related species using (micro)spectrophotometry and anatomical methods. The contribution of different petal structures to the overall visual signal was quantified using a recently developed optical model. We show that the coloration of glossy buttercup flowers is due to a rare combination of structural and pigmentary coloration. A very flat, pigment-filled upper epidermis acts as a thin-film reflector yielding the gloss, and additionally serves as a filter for light backscattered by the strongly scattering starch and mesophyll layers, which yields the matte-yellow colour. We discuss the evolution of the gloss and its two likely functions: it provides a strong visual signal to insect pollinators and increases the reflection of sunlight to the centre of the flower in order to heat the reproductive organs.

Keywords
flower colour, epidermis, structural coloration, thin-film interference, pigment, starch
Pubmed
Web of science
Create date
07/03/2017 20:44
Last modification date
20/08/2019 14:37
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