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Different Seed-bearing Structures

In angiosperms, the fruit (Latin, fructus) develops from a carpel or aggregation of carpels. Different angiosperms produce a wide variety of different forms of seed-bearing structures.

Achene -- Monocarpellate and indehiscent. Seed is enclosed in the pericarp but does not adhere to it. Examples: dandelion, buckwheat, strawberry.

Berry -- A true berry is a seed or seeds produced from a single ovary. Examples: tomato, grape, gooseberry, currant, avocado

Caryopsis -- Monocarpellate and indehiscent, similar to an achene, but the pericarp is fused with the seed coat. The caryopsis is the grain. Examples: wheat, rice.

Drupe -- A form of true berry having only a single seed produced by one ovary. Examples: olives, cherry, peach. Raspberries are etaerios of drupes.

Etaerio -- Syncarpous fruit or aggregate fruit, where multiple carpels become multiple fruits, all produced from a single flower. Raspberries are etaerios of drupes.

Samara -- A winged achene; a fibrous, papery membrane grows out from the ovary wall of a dry, indehiscent fruit. Examples: Acer (maple), Fraxinus (ash)

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James E. Shields, <>, webmaster
Last revised: 30 December 2011
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