Cucurbitaceae – Cucurbita maxima (Kadu)

Cucurbitaceae – Cucurbita maxima (Kadu)

The family comprises of 100 genera and 850 species distributed mainly in tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. Most members are cultivated for their edible fruits. The common are: Cucurbita maxima (Kadu), Luffa cylindrica (Ghia tori), Cucumis sativus (Cucumber), Citrullus vulgaris (Water melon) and momordica charantia (Karela).

Cucurbita maxima (kadu) Flower

Distinguish Features:

Herbs with weak stems tendril climber, simple leaves of palmate type, flower unisexual, epigynous, calyx 5 united, corolla 5 to many, stamen 5, tricapillary, syncarpous, unilocular, inferior ovary.

Cucurbita maxima (kadu):

Habit:

A tendril climbing herb cultivated for its edible fruit used as vegetable. The plant is monoecious bearing unisexual male and female flowers.

Stem:

Weak, hairy, herbaceous, juicy.

Leaf:

Cauline and ramal, alternate, exstipulate, petiolate (petioles long), simple, reticulate, multicostate, leaf lamina palmately lobed (4 – 7 lobes).

Cucurbita maxima (kadu) Leaf

Cucurbita maxima (kadu) Leaf

Inflorescence:

Cymose solitary axillary.

Flowers

Both Male and Female Flowers are as Follow:

Male Flower (Staminate Flower):

Bracteate, pedicellate, incomplete, actinomorphic, unisexual, pentamerous, staminate.

Calyx:

Five sepals, gamosepalous, campanulate, superior.

Corolla:

Five petals, polypetalous, campanulate, superior.

Androecium:

Five stamens, four united in pairs and one free, sigmoid, superior.

Gynoecium:

Absent.

Floral Formula: K(5)  C(5)  A1+(2)+(2) G_-0.

Female Flower (Pistillate Flower):

Pedicellate, incomplete, actinomorphic, epigynous, unisexual pistillate, pentamerous.

Calyx:

Five sepals, gamosepalous, campanulate, superior.

Corolla:

Five petals, gamopetalous, campanulate, superior.

Androecium:

Absent.

Gynoecium:

Tricarpellary, syncarpous, ovary inferior, and unilocular with many ovules, placentation parietal, style cylindric, stigma trilobed.

Floral Formula: K(5)  C(5)  A(0) G(3).

Cucurbita maxima (kadu) Floral Diagram

Cucurbita maxima (kadu) Floral Diagram

 

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