panicle A type of flowering shoot common in the grass family. The primary axis bears groups of racemes and is itself racemose, as the youngest groups of flowers are at the top (e.g. oat). The term may be used loosely for any form of branched racemose inflorescence; for example, the horse chestnut is a raceme of cymes. Both these arrangements are seen in the family Polygonaceae (docks and sorrels).
pan·i·cle / ˈpanikəl/ • n. Bot. a loose, branching cluster of flowers, as in oats.DERIVATIVES: pan·i·cled adj.
panicle Strictly, an inflorescence that is a compound raceme, i.e. one that comprises several racemose parts. More loosely, the term is applied to any complex, branched inflorescence.
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