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Fruits and Seed Dispersal

Essay by   •  August 31, 2013  •  Essay  •  1,243 Words (5 Pages)  •  1,014 Views

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Abstract

Fruits are great gift for us by the nature. They provide several types of benefits to our health and they are tasty in eating as well. Seed dispersal has several benefits for plant species. First, seed survival is often higher away from the parent plant and seed dispersal also allows plants to reach specific habitats that are favorable for survival. In this paper, I will discuss why are some fruits are sweet and some are sour, whereas others have no taste. I will also describe how does the ripening of fruit affects the process of seed dispersal and how humans interfere in the process by consuming grains and fruits. In addition I will discuss if a seed uses the fructose or starch in fruits for its metabolism.

FRUITS AND SEED DISPERSAL 3

Fruits and Seed Dispersal

Fruits and seeds are very important elements to the length or duration of the human race. They are a very important source of nutrients that we need to intake to stay vital in our everyday life. The dispersal of seeds is determined largely by the size, shape and character of the seedcoat or the persisting structures of the fruit (Stefferud, 2012). Seeds are dispersed by means of wind, water, birds, humans and animal are sources that contribute to very favorable environment for plants to flourish, and be able to grow. For plants to be widely distributed, their seeds have to be dispersed--that is, distributed preferably long distances from the parent plant (Mader, 2010, p. 371).

WHY ARE SOME FRUITS SWEET AND SOME SOUR, WHEREAS OTHERS HAVE NO TASTE?

The taste of any fruit depends on the compounds present in it. These chemical compounds are acids, fructose, vitamins, starch, proteins or cellulose and dependent on the amount of each inside the fruit the content determines the specific taste portrayed by the fruits (Hulme, 1970, p. 159). Fruits, which contain high levels of fructose, tend to possess sweeter

taste thus making it have more sugars as part of the components. The chemical processes accompanying ripening increase the amount of sugar that is present in a banana making it sweet (Mauseth, 2003, p. 271). Each fruit has a distinct taste, which differs in some way form the taste of any other fruit. Some fruits like watermelon, guavas, grapes, apples, mangoes are sweet in taste while lemon, orange and raw mango are sour. Lime and lemons contain elevated levels of citric acid, which is responsible for the bitterness possessed by the two types of fruits (Hulme, 1970, p. 119). In general raw fruits contain more acids but on ripening, the quantity of acid in

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them decreases and the amount of sugar increases. That is why raw mangoes are sour, but ripe ones are sweet. Sour fruits like lemons do not taste sweet even after they are ripe, because of the presence of excessive amounts of acids (Why Are Some Fruits Sweet While Others Are Sours, 2012). Fruits that do not have a specific taste contain equal amounts of starch and acids, which in turn gives them a neutral taste.

HOW DOES THE RIPENING OF FRUIT AFFECT THE PROCESS OF SEED DISPERSAL?

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