Types of Flowers: The beauty and diversity of colorful flowers, scents and textures, and intriguing scientific properties can feel like a world beyond our own. However, it is not just the beauty of flowers that captivates us but also the science behind it.
In botany, there are four different types of plants, and one of them is angiosperms (aka flowering plants).
The APG (Angiosperm Phylogeny Group) is an international group of systematic botanists dedicated to discovering new angiosperms that reveal new data about plant relationships identified through phylogenetic studies.
Flower Types By Life Cycle
There are three primary kinds of flowers: Annuals, Perennials, and Biennials. In addition, there is the fourth type of flower that behaves both annuals and perennials like a hybrid. Also there are two more kinds of flowers namely shrub flowers and tree flowers.
Let’s explore what each of these means:
These flowering plants complete their entire life cycle from seed to flower and back to see within a single growing season. Essentially, roots, stems, leaves, and flowers all die at the end of the year. The seeds stay dormant until the following season. A few annual examples are Marigold, Geranium, Cornflower, and Impatiens.
These plants persist for many growing seasons. The root remains the same; however, the top sections of the plant die out in winter and then regrow in the spring. It is observed that many perennial plants tend to keep their leaves year-round. Perennial examples include Coneflower, Columbine, Coreopsis, Daylily, and more.
To complete an entire biological life cycle, Biennials will take two full years from germination to seed. A rosette of leaves appears near the soil surface during the first year (essentially the primary growth of stems and roots). In the second year, the stem would elongate, flowers and seed formation would occur before the plant eventually dies out.
Sweet William Dwarf, leek, cabbage, parsley, foxglove, and hollyhocks are good examples of Biennials. Some biennial plants in the wild will take longer than two years to fully mature and complete their cycle.
Certain flowering plants exhibit annual or perennial characteristics depending upon where it is grown. For instance, the Black-eyed Susan flower would grow faster in Texas due to warm weather – thus, it would behave as annual. On the other hand, the same Black-eyed Susan in Minnesota would grow slower due to cold weather – thus, it would behave as a biennial.
The flowering shrubs are small to medium-sized perennial woody plants with woody stems from the ground. There are two kinds of flowering shrubs, namely deciduous and evergreen. Deciduous shrubs (often also called bushes) shed their leaves and floral parts at the end of each growing season in winter or dry seasons (e.g., Hawthorn). The other types of shrubs are called evergreen, where foliage remains green for many seasons (e.g., Ilex/Holly).
Unlike flowering trees, they are shorter in height, usually 6 to 10m. The shrub flowers usually appear in clusters on the stems. Some flowering shrubs are Hydrangea, Azalea, Camellia, Lilac, Forsythia, Quince, and Deutzia.
Trees are perennial plants with elongated trunks, supporting branches, leaves, flowers, or fruits. Like flowering shrubs, trees can also be deciduous and evergreen. It has been documented that trees have been in existence for 370 million years. Flowering trees help to form a backbone for your garden with lovely flowers. Magnolia, Cherry blossom, Eastern redbud, Trumpet trees, Dogwood, Banksia, and Acacia are good examples of flowering trees.
Types of Flowers
Here is a collection of all types of flowers in the plant world.
Types of Flowers By Names
Here is a list of flowers names sorted alphabetically.
Flowers That Start with A
Flowers Starting with B
Flowers Starting with C
Flowers Starting with D
Flowers Starting with E
Flowers Starting with F
Flowers Starting with G
Flowers Starting with H
Flowers Starting with I
Flowers Starting with J
Flowers Starting with K
Flowers Starting with L
Flowers Starting with M
Flowers Starting with N
Flowers Starting with O
Flowers Starting with P
Flowers Starting with Q
Flowers Starting with R
Flowers Starting with S
Flowers Starting with T
Here are the 65 different flower orders in the plant world.
Types of Flowers By Regions
Beautiful Japanese Flowers
Top 17 Best Hawaiian Flowers
Top 25 Texas Flowers
Types of Flowers By Attributes
Best Fragrant Flowers
Top Short-lived Flowers
Types of Flowers By Shapes
The following pages show various flowers by their geometrical shapes.
Classification of Flowers
According to APG IV (2016) molecular-based flowering plants classification, there are currently two major categories – basal angiosperms and core angiosperms.
The basal angiosperm is a large group of the most primitive flowering plants in the plant kingdom. These flowering plants have many flattened stamens with broad filaments, diverse tepals, many separate carpels, fragrant oils, and spirally organized leaves.
The most basal angiosperms are called the ANITA grade, an acronym of three sub-groups: Amborellales, Nymphaeales, Illiciaceaes, Trimeniaceae, and Austrobaileyales. However, some botanists recently abbreviated it further to ANA-grade since Illiciaceaes and Trimeniaceae orders are considered sub-orders of Austrobaileyales.
The Amborellales order has just one species (Amborella), a shrub or small tree growing up to 8m endemic to New Caledonia. The leaves of Amroerall are evergreen at all seasons without stipules and grow beautiful yellow flowers. Being dioecious, meaning it produces both male and female flowers for a mixed pollination system. Wind and insect pollinators are two main contributors to the reproduction of this species.
The Nymphaeales order consists of 3 subfamilies of aquatic plants, namely Nymphaeaceae (water lilies), Hydatellaceae (aquatic grass/sedges), and Cabombaceae (aquatic herbaceous flowering plants). At present, about 85+ flowering plants have been classified under Nymphaeales.
The Austrobaileyales plant order consists of 100+ woody flowering plants growing as shrubs, small trees, or lianas (woody climbing vines) worldwide. The most famous Austrobaileyales plant is the star anise (Illicium verum).
There are three subfamilies under this order, namely Austrobaileyaceae (1 species only – Austrobaileya scandens – endemic to rainforests of northeastern Queensland, Australia), Schisandraceae (90+ essential oil-producing shrubs, trees, and lianas), and Trimeniaceae (6+ essential oil-generating lianas).
The core angiosperms are another group of flowering plants also known as mesangiosperms. About 99% of all types of flowers in the world are classified under mesangiosperms.
Mesangiospermae includes five clades, namely Ceratophyllales, Chloranthales, Eudicots, Magnoliidae, and Monocots.
Chloranthales has only one family called Chloranthaceae. There are 77+ species in these woody fragrant, herbaceous flowering plants, endemic to Asia, Central & South America, and the West Indies. Being void of petals, the flowers of Chloranthaceae are tiny seated on the axis of the inflorescence. These plants produce drupes and berries with just one carpel. Cigarbush is an excellent example of this plant order.
Magnoliids are another group of core angiosperms characterized by trimerous flowers with branching-veined leaves. About 9000+ flower species are classified in this plant order, including avocado, cinnamon, black pepper, nutmeg, and tulip trees. Magnoliid flowering plants play an essential role in our economy as food, drugs, perfumes, species, timber, and many other applications.
It is short for Monocotyledons order. Monocots are grass-like parallel-veined, trimerous, flowering plants whose seeds contain only one embryonic leaf (cotyledon) and pollen with a single pore. There are about 70,000+ flowering species in this plant order. Monocot diversity consists of ornamental flowers, including orchids, tulips, lilies, cereal grains, woody tree-like palm trees, bamboo, reeds, bromeliads, bananas, and ginger. Two-thirds of monocots are zoophilous pollinated by insects.
Ceratophyllum includes flowering plants commonly found in ponds, marshes, and streams in tropical regions. These aquatic angiosperms typically grow partially submerged in water and mostly float on the surface. These flowering plants have no roots, but sometimes they develop modified leaves with a rootlike structure, which anchor the plant to the bottom. Examples include hornwort species such as spiny hornworts, rigid hornworts, prickly hornworts, soft hornworts, and coontails. At present, there are about 6 extant species of Ceratophyllum in the world.
These core angiosperms have two seed leaves upon germination, also known as Dicotyledons. The most popular eudicots include sunflower, dandelion, cabbage, apple, maple, macadamia, forget-me-not, petunia, and oaks. Eudicots is the largest flowering order in the world. About 175,000+ flower species of eudicots are currently characterized by 4 or 5 flowers, pollen with three pores, and branching-veined leaves.