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Bumblebees are the primary pollinators of the flowers, as they are one of the few insects that can force their way past the closed corolla. This floral characteristic excludes smaller insects that are less efficient at pollination from robbing nectar and pollen from the bumblebees. Because the foliage and roots are bitter-tasting, mammalian herbivores usually don't use this plant as a food source. However, deer may chomp off the tender tops of the plants before they have a chance to flower. This can cause the central stem to form smaller side branches. The seeds are too small to be of much interest to birds. The ecological value of Bottle Gentian is low, notwithstanding the appeal of the flowers to humans.