In angiospermic plants after fertilization the ovary develops into a fruit and the ovules inside the ovary develop into seeds.
Types of Fruits
Depending on their development, the fruits are divided into
- False fruits, and
- True fruits.
- False Fruits
These fruits are developed from the floral parts such as calyx, thalamus and pedicel and not from the ovary. These floral parts form a major part of the fruit (e.g. Apple).
- True Fruits
These fruits are developed from fertilized ovaries. The true fruit has two parts namely, the fruit wall and the seed. The true fruits are classified into three types, namely Simple fruits, Aggregate fruits and Compound fruits.
They are classified into fleshy fruits and dry fruits.
- Fleshy Fruits
In these fruits the pericarp becomes fleshy at the time of ripening. It can be divided into three layers namely outer epicarp, middle mesocarp and inner endocarp (e.g. Mango, Tomato, Apple, Orange etc.). The fleshy fruits are divided into drupe (endocarp hard and stony) as in mango, berry (endocarp pulpy) as in tomato. Pome (apple and pear), Hesperidium (orange and lemon).
- Dry Fruits
The fruits that dehisce after ripening are grouped into legume (pea), follicle (Calotropis), Siliqua (mustard) and capsule (cotton) types.
- Aggregate Fruits
If there is a cluster of simple fruits, which is borne on the same thalamus and developed from polycarpellary, apocarpous ovary, they are aggregate as in Calotropis.
When fruits develop from the inflorescence, it is composite as in pineapple and mulberry.
Dehiscence of Fruits
The dehiscent fruits rupture to liberate their seeds in several ways. In Portulaca and Celosia, the seeds are liberated through transverse rupture; in poppy and Luffa through pores; in pea and bean through sutural valves; in cotton and lady's finger through locules; in linseed and mustard through septa or partition wall. In plants like datura, the fruits rupture loculicidally throwing valves away from fruit, and leaving seeds attached to the central axis.