What is the center part of a flower, excluding the leaves called? A quick search yields "pistil", but that's hardly an everyday word. It appears to be particularly anatomical. I'm looking for a word that even the least educated Anglophone uses for the middle (usually yellow) parts of flowers. If it exists, of course.

  • Flowers come in many shapes, and it is only Compositae, the 'daisy-like' flowers, that typically have a yellow centre. Sep 11, 2022 at 7:15
  • I realize now I excluded a great number of flowers. I was indeed referring to daisy-like flowers.
    – Esoppant
    Sep 12, 2022 at 1:15

2 Answers 2


There is a clash between scientific language and everyday language.


For example a scientist would not say that this is "a flower", it is a cluster of simple tube flowers (the yellow parts) surrounded by a ring of flowers with one elongated white petal.

The yellow part isn't a pistil. Each tiny yellow floret has its own pistil and two stamens, but you'd need a microscope to see them.

In simple everyday language, the yellow part is just "the middle of the flower".


"Pistil" is, indeed, the most common term for that part of a flower. It is not so rare; many Anglophones (at least in the United States) know it from biology class during their school days. A related term is "carpel":

: one of the ovule-bearing structures in an angiosperm that comprises the innermost whorl of a flower
— compare PISTIL

However, that term is even less widely used than "pistil".

  • The trouble with "pistil" is that it means the "female" parts of the flower, and excludes the stamens, which carry the yellow pollen. Moreover many of the things that would be called "a flower", such a a daisy, are not single flowers in the biological sense. The yellow part is a cluster of yellow florets.
    – James K
    Sep 11, 2022 at 6:57
  • @JamesK Yes, but OP said that his or her search resulted in pistil, so I assumed that he or she was talking about that particular part. Perhaps that isn't the case, but it's not really clear. (Now that I think about it, I'm considering CV'ing for "needs details or clarity".) Sep 11, 2022 at 17:04

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