Field of Science

Friday Fabulous Flower - Fruit stage


Flowers at the stage of seed dispersal, i.e., fruit, tend to get over looked.  Next to our patio is an old TV antenna that makes a good fire escape and a great plant trellis.  In this case the plant is our Magnolia vine, Schisandra chinensis.  The flowers now at the stage of fruit development made an interesting pattern. Each more or less light green axis is from a flower and on it are oval fruitlets from each of the ovaries on the receptacle of this flower.  The larger oval ones will mature, the smaller ones are abortive fruitlets, but they all will turn scarlet in color.  What is unique is how much the receptacle elongates after pollination such that the bunch of fruitlets looks more like a bunch of fruits.  Since they are spaced our the individual fruitlets stay solitary rather then fusing laterally like the drupelets of a raspberry.  Enjoy?

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