catkin

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catkin A type of flowering shoot (see racemose inflorescence) in which the axis, which is often long, bears many small stalkless unisexual flowers. Usually the male catkins hang down from the stem; the female catkins are shorter and often erect. Examples include birch and hazel. Most plants with catkins are adapted for wind pollination, the male flowers producing large quantities of pollen; willows are an exception, having nectar-secreting flowers and being pollinated by insects.

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catkin A pendulous spike, usually of simple, unisexual flowers.

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cat·kin / ˈkatkin/ • n. a flowering spike of trees such as willow and hazel. Catkins are typically downy, pendulous, composed of flowers of a single sex, and wind-pollinated.

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catkin XVI. — Du. †katteken lit. kitten, dim. of katte CAT.