Seed-filter: Can you ID this seed?
May 15, 2012 7:16 PM   Subscribe

Seed-filter: Can you identify this seed (head-on, profile)? My mom came across this odd seed and is wondering what it is. I suggested that we plant it to figure out, but decided that Asking Metafilter might be a faster option.
posted by rdn to Home & Garden (5 answers total)
Assuming you found it in DC, my guess is that it's from a Southern magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora). They have sort of pine-cone-ish seed pods with large red seeds - see the picture on the wiki page.
posted by Quietgal at 7:22 PM on May 15, 2012

Thanks, Quietgal! This is key information that I really should have mentioned -- it's from Bangalore, India. (Clearly I'm not a good botanist...)
posted by rdn at 7:47 PM on May 15, 2012

It looks a lot like a persimmon seed...I'm gonna continue to research though, and try to come up with a definitive answer.
posted by PlantGoddess at 7:13 AM on May 16, 2012

The scar from where the seed was connected to the ovary is on the side, so not a persimmon nor Magnolia grandiflora. Did your mom have any pictures of the plants in the general area? I would start by identifying those, and then look at their seeds. Without a plant or even a fruit, a single seed is very difficult to identify. The key would be knowing the plants in the area, or for someone who has grown the exact same plant to recognize it.
posted by oneirodynia at 9:19 AM on May 16, 2012

Thanks for the guess, PlantGoddess!

Oneirodynia, I asked my Mom -- the mystery deepens, in that one of her friends was apparently mailed the seed -- so no easy context. (Of course, the easy answer would be to ask the person who mailed the seed...)
posted by rdn at 7:09 PM on May 16, 2012

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