Seeds in which endosperm or perisperm or both exist are commonly called albuminous or endospermic, those in which neither is found are termed exalbuminous or exendospermic. These terms, extensively used by systematists, only refer, however, to the grosser features of the seed, and indicate the more or less evident.
The fruit is berry-like, and the seeds are remarkable for having their embryo surrounded by an endosperm as well as by a perisperm.
In some plants the nucellus is not thus absorbed, but itself becomes a seat of deposit of reserve-food constituting the perisperm which may coexist with endosperm, as in the water-lily order, or may alone form a food-reserve for the embryo, as in Canna.
The solitary seed has no perisperm or albumen, but has two large and curiously crumpled cotyledons concealing the plumule, the leaves of which, even at this early stage, show traces of pinnae.
Germination is often slower where there is a store of available food in the perisperm, or in the endosperm, or in the embryo itself, than where this is scanty or wanting.