A capsule is a type of dehiscent dried fruit (that is, it opens when ripe to release the seeds ), composed of at least two carpels . In general it contains more than one seed in each one. It forms from a super ovary , and dehiscence can take many different forms:
- septicida , that is, opening at the juncture between carpels, as in Digitalis ;
- loculicida , that is, each carpel opening separately, as in tulips ( Tulipa spp.);
- septifrage , that is, opening through the septa in planes parallel to the central axis of the fruit, whose internal parts remain attached to the axial column, as in the missionary cedar ( Cedrela tubiflora );
- placenta , that is, opening by two parallel slits close to the placenta;
- foraminal or valvular , that is, pores opening on the upper surface of the capsule, through which the seeds escape when the fruits are stirred by the wind;
- dental , that is, the carpellar apex opens and forms a serrated rim at the top;
- porícida , that is, by pores that open below the upper disk, for example almost all species of the genus Papaver ( Poppies ).
- circular or transversal , the so-called pixels , as for example in the henbane .
Some capsules tend to burst when they reach maturity, dispersing the seeds by the force of the explosion itself in the so-called autocoria .
The capsules are frequently confused with walnuts , as in the Brazil nut ( Bertholletia excelsa ) and the horse chestnut ( Aesculus hippocastanum ), but it differs from these fruits by being dehiscent.
- Wikimedia Commons hosts a multimedia category on Capsule .
- Morphological Botany, Morphology of vascular plants, Fruits, Faculty of Agrarian Sciences, Universidad Nacional del Nordeste, Corrientes, Argentina, 2001-2013
- Santamarina Siurana MP, Roselló Caselles J. & García Bermejo FJ, Biology and botany practices, Polytechnic University of Valencia, p. 135-137, 2014 - Accessed: August 6, 2014