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Author Topic: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables  (Read 7686 times)

Offline neilep

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An advocado is a fruit, so is a tomato !!....but I think I'm having one of my 'braingoonetosleep ' moments, I think it's got something to do with the pips or seeds but can you please remind me what makes a fruit a fruit and a vegetable a vegetable ?

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Offline finchbeak

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #1 on: 01/08/2005 14:35:27 »
A fruit is a mature ovary with seeds inside.  A vegetable is any other edible plant part.
 

Offline simeonie

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #2 on: 01/08/2005 20:31:27 »
Don't all fruits come from like bush's or trees and vegetables come from the ground?

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Offline neilep

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #3 on: 01/08/2005 20:32:29 »
quote:
Originally posted by finchbeak

A fruit is a mature ovary with seeds inside.  A vegetable is any other edible plant part.


Thank you very much sir :)

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Offline neilep

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #4 on: 01/08/2005 20:34:26 »
quote:
Originally posted by simeonie

Don't all fruits come from like bush's or trees and vegetables come from the ground?

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Well...root veggies come from the ground..ie: carrots, parsnips, spuds etc but as far as I know veggies like peas and beans grow above ground....which is nice !

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« Last Edit: 01/08/2005 20:34:49 by neilep »
 

Offline finchbeak

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #5 on: 01/08/2005 20:54:31 »
quote:

Thank you very much sir :)




Yer welcome.  It's a botanical definition, of course.  Grocers classify them according to how they taste and their traditional culinary uses.  But I'm a botanist and so I insist that such items as tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers (all very closely related, by the way) and anything else that is obviously a mature ovary to be fruits.  Less obvious are things like whole grains - maize, wheat, barley, oats, etc., when they are still enclosed within their "bran" are also, botanically speaking, fruits.
 

Offline finchbeak

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #6 on: 01/08/2005 21:00:47 »
quote:
Originally posted by neilep

quote:
Originally posted by simeonie

Don't all fruits come from like bush's or trees and vegetables come from the ground?

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Well...root veggies come from the ground..ie: carrots, parsnips, spuds etc but as far as I know veggies like peas and beans grow above ground....which is nice !

Men are the same as women.... just inside out !!



Peas and beans - while they are still in their pods - are fruits.  If you remove them from their pods, they are seeds.  But they are definitely not vegetables.  Not botanically, anyway.
And there are some (albeit very few) fruits that develop underground.  Peanuts are an example.  In order for a fruit to develop underground, the flower from which the fruit derived would have to get underground somehow.  Peanut plants actually push their pollinated flowers underground - quite unusual.
 

Offline neilep

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #7 on: 01/08/2005 21:23:57 »
quote:
Originally posted by finchbeak

quote:
Originally posted by neilep

quote:
Originally posted by simeonie

Don't all fruits come from like bush's or trees and vegetables come from the ground?

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-__- my website!!!!
http://www.simeonie.co.uk
has forums too!
Think about it! lolz



Well...root veggies come from the ground..ie: carrots, parsnips, spuds etc but as far as I know veggies like peas and beans grow above ground....which is nice !

Men are the same as women.... just inside out !!



Peas and beans - while they are still in their pods - are fruits.  If you remove them from their pods, they are seeds.  But they are definitely not vegetables.  Not botanically, anyway.
And there are some (albeit very few) fruits that develop underground.  Peanuts are an example.  In order for a fruit to develop underground, the flower from which the fruit derived would have to get underground somehow.  Peanut plants actually push their pollinated flowers underground - quite unusual.



Wow !!..what about a coconut...is it a fruit or a nut ?..or both... ?..thank you for your wisdom.

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Offline finchbeak

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #8 on: 01/08/2005 22:07:52 »
It depends on what you're talking about.  In many parts of the world, coconuts are sold in their fibrous rugby ball-shaped outer husk.  The husk is the outer part of the ovary wall (technically called the exocarp) and so the whole thing is a fruit.  It has a smooth surface and it allows the fruit to float.  Coconut fruits may travel thousands of miles on ocean currents this way.
On the other hand, the spherical rough-textured thing sold where I live is the inner part of that fruit.  That hard, rough shell (with the three spots at one end) is the inner part of the ovary wall (the endocarp).  If you crack it, you will notice a thin papery skin just inside of it.  This is the seed coat (technically called the integument.  The seed coat encloses the thick, white (and delicious) endosperm. The liquid in the center is also part of the endosperm.  Buried within the endosperm near the end with the three spots, you can find the embryo.  It looks kind of like a very small white cork about 0.5 cm in diameter.  
To answer the question - the whole thing (husk and interior) is a fruit, specifically a type of fruit known as a drupe.  Cherries, peaches, apricots, and almonds are other examples of drupes.  They are different from nuts - which is another type of fruit that is technically distinguished by being enclosed within a tough involucre.  So a coconut is a fruit, but it is not a nut.

Here's a good picture of people removing the husks from coconuts.  You can see the spherical things that I encounter in my grocery store to the right.  If you live in the tropics, chances are that you are more likely to encounter the larger things to the left and you will have to husk the thing yourself.
http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/virgin_coconut_oil.htm [nofollow]

And here is a decent site I came across that explains, in very simple terms, how botanists think about fruits:
http://koning.ecsu.ctstateu.edu/Plants_Human/fruittype.html [nofollow]
« Last Edit: 02/08/2005 04:15:51 by finchbeak »
 

Offline neilep

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #9 on: 02/08/2005 04:20:57 »
Thanks Chris...they are great links...just the right level for me.:)

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Offline Tronix

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #10 on: 03/08/2005 20:42:36 »
wow. i never knew this stuff. is fig a fruit, because i think it has the flower grow on the inside.

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Offline finchbeak

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #11 on: 03/08/2005 21:12:50 »
Figs are weird.  The fleshy edible part is a type of "accessory fruit" (i.e. the fleshy stuff is derived from non-flower tissue) called a synconium.  You're absolutely right that the flowers develop inside these bulbous structures.  Essentially, the synconium is a flower and its stem that turn inside-out and become swollen.  To my knowledge, the fig genus (Ficus sp.) is the only one in which this strange structure is found.  They are pollinated only by very small wasps (stingless ones, if I recall correctly) that crawl in through the tiny opening at the tip of the synconium.  I think the female wasps take up residence inside and are visited by travelling males.
Here's a good link:
http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/extension/fruit/figs/figs.html [nofollow]
 

Offline gsmollin

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #12 on: 04/08/2005 04:03:54 »
Good thread... Neil you still ask the best questions. How's the baby?
 

Offline neilep

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #13 on: 04/08/2005 11:22:02 »
quote:
Originally posted by gsmollin

Good thread... Neil you still ask the best questions. How's the baby?



thanks gsmollin [:I]....Baby ?..still inside Mummy, was due last Sunday !..suffice it to say...wifey is rather uncomfortable !...they will induce on Tuesday if baby still not saying 'Hi'....:)

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Offline Tronix

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #14 on: 08/08/2005 15:02:45 »
thanks alot finch, thats a pretty cool site. i kinda like figs, and i live in texas. maybe ill try to get a fig tree of my own from clipping grandmas tree (with permission of course)

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Offline David Sparkman

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #15 on: 09/08/2005 04:33:40 »
Hmmm baby and placenta is fruit?? Baby and mother is fruit?

David
 

Offline finchbeak

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #16 on: 12/08/2005 10:08:56 »
quote:
Originally posted by David Sparkman

Hmmm baby and placenta is fruit?? Baby and mother is fruit?



In the case of a plant, yes.
In fact, the part of the fruit to which the seeds are attached is called the placenta, and the different shapes and patterns of placenta in different plants are reffered to as "placentation".  
Cut a tomato in half - all that fleshy stuff in the center, to which the seeds are attached, is placenta.  In fact, a tomato is almost entirely placenta.  
My students love learning this little bit of terminology!
 

Offline Razor

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #17 on: 12/08/2005 10:37:47 »
WoW is there no end to what you can learn on this forum?

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Offline Bin Laden

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #18 on: 22/08/2005 20:35:32 »
well.... fruit is often found in bowls.... and vegetables are found in wheelchairs.

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Re: What's the difference between Fruit and Vegetables
« Reply #18 on: 22/08/2005 20:35:32 »

 

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