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What is a Fruit? – Definition, Types, Classification, Examples

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  • Last Updated : 15 May, 2022

Morphology is a discipline of science that focuses on the exterior structure and characteristics of living systems. It is largely concerned with the investigation of plant forms, morphological characteristics, and the relative placements of various plant components. The study of exterior aspects of flowering plants is referred to as the morphology of flowering plants. The root system and the shoot system are the two primary exterior elements of a plant. Plant morphology encompasses the structure, functions, characterizations, and other morphological components of flowering plants’ roots, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits, and seedlings.

The Root System 
The underground component of the plant that develops from the seed embryo is known as the root system. It is primarily responsible for anchoring plants beneath the earth, providing support, storing food and minerals, and absorbing water and other important elements needed for growth and development. There are 3 types of roots, they were based on their origin and arrangement.

The Shoot System
The aerial component of the plant that is located above the root and ground level is known as the shoot system. The stem, leaves, buds, flowers, fruits, and seeds make up the shoot system. One of the most important systems in a plant is its shoot system.

The fruit that is regarded in the shoot system.

The Fruit

  • The presence of fruit distinguishes flowering plants, often known as angiosperms. The ripened or mature ovary seems to be the fruit after fertilization. The fruit has two parts: the wall and the seed.
  • Parthenocarpic fruits are those grown organically without using fertilizers. Banana is a good example.
  • A wall or pericarp surrounds the seeds in the fruit. 
  • The pericarp might be meaty or dry.
  • The outside layer is known as the epicarp, middle mesocarp, and inner endocarp are formed when the pericarp is thick and meaty.
  • In mango, the fruit is called a drupe. They are just one-seeded & grow from monocarpellary superior ovaries. 
  • Mango has three pericarp layers: an outer thin epicarp, a middle squishy mesocarp, and an interior rocky hard endocarp.
  • The coconut mesocarp is fibrous.
  • The tree fruit is a kind of fruit that develops from the ovary. 
  • However, certain other floral elements may have a role in the creation of fruit, which is referred to as fake fruits. 
  • The thalamus in an apple, for example, is changed to produce fruit.
Coconut Layer


Fruit are 2 types: on the basis of whether fruit develops from the ovary or not

  • True Fruit- True fruits are those that develop solely from the ovary. Mango, Coconut, and other tropical fruits are examples.
  • Pseudocarp or False Fruit- The fruit is not formed by the ovary in some fruits. Some flower parts, such as the thalamus, inflorescence, and calyx, are modified to become a part of the fruit. These are referred to as false fruits. Apple, strawberry, and other fruits are examples.

Fruit Classification

Fruits are categorized based on two criteria:

  • The presence or absence of carpels in the gynoecium.
  • Fruit is produced when one or even more flowers work together. 

Types of Fruits
There are 3 types of fruit which are classified on the basis of the development of fruit 

 Simple fruit 

The monocarpellary or multicarpellary syncarpous ovary produces these fruits. The gynoecium produces only one fruit. Simple fruits are as follows:

  • Fleshy Fruits: Fleshy fruits have three layers of fruit wall: epicarp, mesocarp, and endocarp. These fruits are produced by superior or inferior syncarpous gynoecium.
  • Simple Dry Fruits: The pericarp of simple dry fruits is typically dry and hard. It does not have the three layers of epicarp, mesocarp, and endocarp. This pericarp is broken down in some dry fruits, and the seeds are scattered or dispersed. Those are fruits that are dehisce.

The pericarp is further divided into one or more seeded segments in some fruits. All of those are a fruit that seems to be schizocarpic. Even after maturing/ripening, the pericarp in some fruits is not dehisced. 

Aggregate fruit 

The multicarpellary apocarpous ovary produces the fruits. Because each carpel is separated from the others in the apocarpous ovary, it develops into a fruitlet. These fruits produce a cluster of fruitlets known as etaerio.

  • Follicle etaerio: A follicle is a fruit or etaerio. Calotropis, Catharanthus, and Magnolia -e are some examples. Calotropis occurs when the stigma is fused or joined in the carpellary ovary and the ovules’ ovaries are separated. In etaerio, there are only two follicles.
  • Achene etaerio: Each fruit in this aggregate fruit is achene. For example, Ranunculus, Strawberry, Rose, etc. The thalamus becomes spongy in the lotus, and some achenes become embedded in it. The thalamus in strawberries is fleshy, with small achenes on its surface.
  • Berrie’s etaerio is a grouping of tiny berries. Polyalthia, Custard-apple, etc. All of the berries in Annona’s etaerio are arranged densely on the thalamus.
  • Drupe etaerio: Many small drupes develop from different carpels in this type of fruit like raspberry. The drupe fruit is formed by the carpel of an apocarpous ovary.

Composite fruit

False fruits are all composite fruits. In general, many ovaries and other floral parts combine to form the fruit in these fruits. There are two kinds of these:

  • Sorosis: These fruits form from the spike, spadix, or catkin inflorescence. Examples include Jackfruit and Kevda (screwpine). Pistillate flowers develop around the peduncle of jackfruit (Kathal). The pericarp becomes spongy and fused during fruit formation.
  • Sycosis: The hypanthium inflorescence produces these fruits. The receptacle hollows out and develops a pore. The orifice is surrounded by a swarm of microscopic scales. For example, the Ficus species Peepal.

Conceptual Questions

Question 1: What are the parts the fruit consists of?


 The outside epicarp, middle mesocarp, endosperm, and inner endocarp are formed when the pericarp is thick and meaty.

Question 2: What are the discussed fruit categorizations?


Fruits are classified according to two criteria: 

  • Whether or not the carpels in gynoecium are free or fused. 
  • Fruit is formed by the participation of one or more flowers. 

Fruit is generally classified into three categories: simple, aggregate, and composite.

Question 3: What is the definition of morphology?


Morphology is a scientific field that studies the external structure and properties of biological systems. It is largely concerned with the investigation of plant forms, morphological characteristics, and the relative placements of various plant components.

Question 4: What are parts that cover the Morphology of Flowering plants


 Morphology is concerned with the design, function, classifications, and other morphological characteristics of the flowering plant including seeds, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits, and roots..

Question 5: How is the pericarp of mango is divided?


 Mango pericarp is made up of three layers: an outer thin epicarp, a mid squishy mesocarp, and an internal rocky hard endocarp.

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