Saturday, September 19, 2015

Last Hollyhocks in Morning Sun

The hollyhocks in my yard are winding down; just a few flowers left.
Mine are all volunteers.  They’ve done well this wet summer.
Veritable multitudes of schizocarps!

Hollyhock fruits are dry discs that split into many thin segments, each with a seed.  Hence the term schizocarp—split or divided fruit.  On my plants, the segments (mericarps) stay trapped in the old dried sepals until a hard wind blows or someone brushes against them and spills them on the walk.
Mericarps are about 5 mm across.
Three papery mericarps, each holding a seed.