The key difference between apocarpous and syncarpous is that the apocarpous ovary bears two or more unfused carpels, while the syncarpous ovary bears two or more fused carpels.
Angiosperms are known as flowering plants. They have the male and the female reproductive part. The male reproductive part, which is called the androecium, has anthers and filaments. The gynoecium is the female part of the flower that bears the ovary, ovules, stigma, and style. Based on the characteristics of the ovary, there are two main types of ovaries: apocarpous and syncarpous ovary. They give rise to flowers and fruits with varying characteristics.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Apocarpous
3. What is Syncarpous
4. Similarities – Apocarpous and Syncarpous
5. Apocarpous vs Syncarpous in Tabular Form
6. Summary – Apocarpous vs Syncarpous
What is Apocarpous?
Apocarpous is a type of ovary of a flowering plant that bears two or more unfused carpels in the gynoecium. These carpels are free, distinct, and unfused. The apocarpous ovary results in an aggregate type of fruit. It is also defined as the gynoecium that bears a free pistil. Usually, the apocarpous ovary is unilocular, meaning that it consists of one compartment. Apocarpous ovaries can be observed in ranunculus, lotus, strawberry, and buttercup flowers. A flower bearing an apocarpous ovary is known as an apocarpous flower.
What is Syncarpous?
Syncarpous is a type of ovary that bears two or more fused carpels in the gynoecium. These carpels are fused; hence, they are not free and not distinct. Therefore, they usually form one fruit with one or many seeds. These are also called simple fruits.
Syncarpous is also defined as a gynoecium containing a combined pistil. Generally, the syncarpous ovary is multilocular or unilocular, meaning it consists of multiple compartments. A syncarpous ovary is present in plants such as petunia, althaea, tulip, tomato, mango, guava, and coconut. A flower bearing a syncarpous ovary is called a syncarpous flower.
What are the Similarities Between Apocarpous and Syncarpous?
- Apocarpous and syncarpous are types of ovaries in flowering plants.
- Both belong to the gynoecium of the flower.
- Moreover, they play an important role in the characteristics of flowers and fruits.
- They have two or more carpels.
- Moreover, both give rise to fruits.
What is the Difference Between Apocarpous and Syncarpous?
The apocarpous ovary bears two or more unfused carpels, while the syncarpous ovary bears two or more fused carpels. Thus, this is the key difference between apocarpous and syncarpous. The pistil of the apocarpous is free, while it is combined in syncarpous. Moreover, fruits appear as aggregates in apocarpous, while only one simple fruit is formed in syncarpous.
The below infographic presents the differences between apocarpous and syncarpous in tabular form for side-by-side comparison.
Summary – Apocarpous vs Syncarpous
Apocarpous and syncarpous are two types of ovaries found in the gynoecium of flowering plants. The gynoecium is the female reproductive structure of the plant. The apocarpous ovary bears two or more unfused carpels, while the syncarpous ovary bears two or more fused carpels. They both give rise to fruits but have varying characteristics. While the apocarpous ovary produces aggregate-type fruits, the syncarpous ovary produces one simple fruit. Examples of apocarpous flowers include lotus, strawberry, and buttercup. Examples of syncarpous flowers include tulips, mango, and tomato. So, this summarizes the difference between apocarpous and syncarpous.
1. “Apocarpous and Syncarpous Ovary.” Unacademy, 17 May 2022.
2. XF; LyuN; DuW; Wang. “Unique Growth Paths of Heterospecific Pollen Tubes Result in Late Entry into Ovules in the Gynoecium of Sagittaria (Alismataceae).” Plant Biology (Stuttgart, Germany), U.S. National Library of Medicine.