Cabbage and rapeseed plants are probably not your first thought when it comes to fruit.
As strange as it may seem, the seeds and seed pods of the cabbage family are long, narrow fruits called siliqua (or silique).
Siliquose fruit anatomy
If allowed to bolt, or go to seed, members of the cabbage family produce long, skinny fruits, commonly referred to as seed capsules or seed pods. These pods are each made from two fused carpels. [Carpels are the female reproductive parts of a flower, consisting of the ovary, stigma, and style.] Ovules (seeds) form along the length of the carpels. These fruits look like pea pods, with two distinct sides, called valves. The valves are the outer walls of the ovary, also known as the pericarp. The juicy flesh of a peach and the hard outer shell of an almond are also made from the pericarp. Inside the siliquose fruit is a papery liner, called the septum. The line where the two valves meet is called the replum. When the fruit ripens and dries, it often pops open along this line, starting at the top. Since the two halves separate, these seeds are considered dehiscent.
If a seed capsule is more than three times as long as it is wide, it is called a silique, or siliqua. If a seed capsule is less than three times longer than wide, it is called silicle or silicula.
You can grow a surprising amount of food in your own yard. Ask me how!