In botany, a spadix (// SPAY-diks; plural spadices // SPAY-dih-seez, // spay-DY-seez) is a type of spike inflorescence having small flowers borne on a fleshy stem. Spadices are typical of the family Araceae, the arums or aroids. The spadix is typically surrounded by a leaf-like curved bract known as a spathe. For example, the "flower" of the well known Anthurium spp. is a typical spadix with a large colorful spathe.
Monoecious aroids have unisexual male and female flowers on the same individual and the spadix is usually organized with female flowers towards the bottom and male flowers towards the top. Typically, the stigmas are no longer receptive when pollen is released which prevents self-fertilization. There are also compound spadix inflorescences, in which the axis is branched. Usually the whole inflorescence is covered by a stiff boat shaped hood, for example the coconut.
Elephant ear or ape flower (Xanthosoma sagittifolium) with a white spadix partially surrounded by a green-, rose-, and cream-colored spathe
Spadix of Spathiphyllum floribundum
Spadix of Spathiphyllum in Brazil
Spadix of Typha latifolia
Spadix of Zantedeschia elliottiana cultivar showing male flowers above with pollen and female below
Peace lily (Spathiphyllum cochlearispathum) clearly showing the characteristic spadix and spathe of the genus
- spadix. CollinsDictionary.com. Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 11th Edition. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
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