Pappus meaning

păpəs
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A modified calyx, composed of scales, bristles, or featherlike hairs, in plants of the composite family, such as the dandelion and the thistle.
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(bot.) A group or tuft of prongs, bristles, scales, or simple or branched hairs, as on the achenes of the dandelion, forming the modified calyx of the composite and certain other families and serving in the dispersal of the fruit.
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A structure made of scales, bristles, or featherlike hairs that is attached to the seeds (called cypselae) of plants of the composite family and that aids in dispersal by the wind. The downy part of a dandelion or thistle seed is a pappus. The pappus is derived from a modified calyx.
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(botany) The markedly reduced sepals of an Asteraceae floret that take the form of trichomes or scale attached to the ovary or seed.
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Origin of pappus

  • Latin old man, down on certain seeds from Greek pappos papa in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition