Pomology and Fruit Wiki

Simple fruits can be either dry or fleshy, and result from the ripening of a simple or compound ovary in a flower with only one pistil. Dry fruits may be either dehiscent (opening to discharge seeds), or indehiscent (not opening to discharge seeds). Types of dry, simple fruits, with examples of each, are:

  • achene - Most commonly seen in aggregate fruits (e.g. strawberry)
  • capsule – (Brazil nut)
  • caryopsis – (wheat)
  • Cypsela - An achene-like fruit derived from the individual florets in a capitulum (e.g. dandelion).
  • fibrous drupe – (coconut, walnut)
  • follicle – is formed from a single carpel, and opens by one suture (e.g. milkweed). More commonly seen in aggregate fruits (e.g. magnolia)
  • legume – (pea, bean, peanut)
  • loment - a type of indehiscent legume
  • nut – (hazelnut, beech, oak acorn)
  • samara – (elm, ash, maple key)
  • schizocarp – (carrot seed)
  • silique – (radish seed)
  • silicle – (shepherd's purse)
  • utricle – (beet)

Fruits in which part or all of the pericarp (fruit wall) is fleshy at maturity are simple fleshy fruits. Types of fleshy, simple fruits (with examples) are:

  • berry – (redcurrant, gooseberry, tomato, cranberry)
  • stone fruit or drupe (plum, cherry, peach, apricot, olive)

The pome fruits of the family Rosaceae, (including apples, pears, rosehips, and saskatoon berry) are a syncarpous fleshy fruit, a simple fruit, developing from a half-inferior ovary.

Schizocarp fruits form from a syncarpous ovary and do not really dehisce, but split into segments with one or more seeds; they include a number of different forms from a wide range of families. Carrot seed is an example.