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[pan-i-kuh l] /ˈpæn ɪ kəl/
noun, Botany
a compound raceme.
any loose, diversely branching flower cluster.
Origin of panicle
Doric Greek
1590-1600; < Latin pānicula tuft (on plants), diminutive of pānus thread wound on a bobbin, a swelling, ear of millet < Doric Greek pânos (Attic pênos) a web; see -i-, -cle1
Related forms
panicled, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for panicle
  • Each tiller has a head, or panicle, that actually produces the grains of rice.
  • The spreading panicle bears many tiny reddish colored flowers.
  • It is a prolific seed producer with open panicle seed production in mid summer and closed panicle seed set in late fall.
  • The inflorescence is an elongate panicle with creamy white flowers.
  • The chasmogamous seed is produced in the exposed panicle and is sometimes referred to as terminal seed.
  • panicle is a raceme with branches and each branch having a smaller raceme of flowers.
British Dictionary definitions for panicle


a compound raceme, occurring esp in grasses
any branched inflorescence
Derived Forms
panicled, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Latin pānicula tuft, diminutive of panus thread, ultimately from Greek penos web; related to penion bobbin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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panicle in Science
A branched indeterminate inflorescence in which the branches are racemes, so that each flower has its own stalk (called a pedicel) attached to the branch. Oats and sorghum have panicles. See illustration at inflorescence.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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