Planet Earth

Fruits and Veggies Under the Microscope

You may think you know these foods, but you've never seen them like this.

By Discover StaffMar 17, 2015 12:00 PM

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Photo Gallery:

Photo Credits: Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley/Papadakis Publisher

This young fruit is of the widely grown garden strawberry variety. The individual "hairs" can be clearly seen. They are the remnant reproductive organs of the individual seeds on the berry's surface.

Photo Credits: Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley/Papadakis Publisher

Close-up of a broccoli head showing a cluster of immature buds. The tiny pits visible on the surface are stomata, or breathing pores.

Photo Credits: Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley/Papadakis Publisher

Microscopic detail of the surface of a peach. The downy texture of peach skin is due to thousands of hairs, the majority of which are very short. Stomata, or breathing pores, are marked in red.

Photo Credits: Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley/Papadakis Publisher

The black mulberry has been cultivated since antiquity, and is probably originally from China. Here, the microscopic detail shows the individual fruitlets. The hairy texture is withered reproductive organs (stigma).

Photo Credits: Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley/Papadakis Publisher

Cross-section through the leaf of a leek. The spongy tissue, called mesophyll, is typical of leaves. Here the leaf shown magnified is just 1.2 millimeters thick.

Photo Credits: Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley/Papadakis Publisher

This is a close-up of an "eye" of a potato with three emerging shoots, the longest of which is about 4 millimeters long.

Photo Credits: Wolfgang Stuppy, Rob Kesseler & Madeline Harley/Papadakis Publisher

This relative to the raspberry and blackberry is native to northern China, Korea and Japan. Curiously, the whole plant, including the sepals that encase the fruit, is covered in sticky hairs.

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