Philosophical meanderings

While raking the several hundred pounds of acorns from the front lawn this weekend, my mind did some wandering (a very dangerous thing on occasion).

My first instinctive thought was brought out by the farm boy in me: “Wow, we had a good crop this year. Too bad acorns aren’t popular as food.”

I continued raking and wandering and happened upon this random thought that I could use some help with:

Why do acorns come from oak trees?

Permit me to elaborate:

Where do walnuts come from?
Where do almonds come from?
Where do peanuts come from?

This holds true for the “fruit” of other plants as well:

Where do apples come from?

Why don’t acorns come from acorn trees? Or, conversely, why aren’t the fruit of oak trees called “oaks?”

Here’s where the help comes in: are there other plants that are like this…where the “fruit” of the plant is named something different than the plant that produces it? I can’t think of any but surely there are more.

Of course, that brings to mind the question: why are dried grapes called raisins and dried plums called prunes? Why aren’t they just dried grapes and dried plums? We don’t make up unique names for other dried fruits. But that’s a quandary for another time.

Sometimes the machinations of my mind amuse even me.


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