- a simple pistil, regarded as a single ovule-bearing leaf or modified leaflike structure
- any of the segments of a compound pistil, usually having a single stigma
Origin of carpelModern Latin diminutive from Classical Greek karpos, fruit: see harvest
One of the structural units of a pistil, representing a modified, ovule-bearing leaf.
Origin of carpelNew Latin carpellum from Greek karpos fruit ; see kerp- in Indo-European roots.
- One of the individual female reproductive organs in a flower. A carpel is composed of an ovary, a style, and a stigma, although some flowers have carpels without a distinct style. In origin, carpels are leaves (megasporophylls) that have evolved to enclose the ovules. The term pistil is sometimes used to refer to a single carpel or to several carpels fused together.
From French carpelle.