Mars attacks

Monique Reed monique at mail.bio.tamu.edu
Mon Oct 9 13:53:28 EST 2000


This sounds like the fruit of _Maclura pomifera_.  It is a North
American native that has been planted extensively as a windbreak.  The
large fruits are multiple fruits, the product of many little flowers. 
The fruits must represent a tremendous expenditure of energy but
aren't good for much.  Squirrels will sometimes tear them apart to get
at the seeds, and horses will nibble them, but one wonders what the
original dispersal agent must have been. (My bet is some large
prehistoric mammal.)

You can see images of Maclura at:
http://www.csdl.tamu.edu/FLORA/cgi/gallery_query?q=maclura

Monique Reed
Biology Department
Texas A&M

AdValorem wrote:
> 
> Hi,
> I've found a strange fruit (and I'm not even sure it's a fruit). It looks
> very much like the brains of the aliens in Mars Attacks, it's green and it
> has the size of a fist, or even bigger. The inside is almost white and looks
> like fibers. It seems to grow on the highest branches of a tree (about 10m
> over the ground). I had never seen something like that, and the people to
> whom I've showed it don't seem to have any idea about it. Could someone tell
> me the name of this fruit ? - although I don't describe it as good as a
> biologist would do.
> If it helps : I live in France, and the tree stands in a park in the city of
> Lyons.
> Thanks,
> Denis






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