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[Aroid-l] A fun bedtime story for (tuberous) aroiders

  • Subject: [Aroid-l] A fun bedtime story for (tuberous) aroiders
  • From: Ken Mosher ken@spatulacity.com
  • Date: Sun, 18 Dec 2005 23:32:40 -0500

Everyone's surely maxed out on mix, so here's a fun lession I learned this week. At the IAS 2004 show I acquired a number of unknown species Amorphs. Two of the species were clearly of the type that produced elongated tubers, but the ones I had were all small, some broken. I didn't really know what to expect.

I potted them up in my usual 1/2 gal square nursery pots and they grew nicely. I just got around to (trying) to unpot them during this last week.

For a tiny bit of background, I'm refurbishing a greenhouse that was built in the 1950's and went uncared for for several years. This spring I built all new benches and used "expanded metal" for the benchtops. If you don't know what that is, it's a mesh with sort of diamond shaped holes.

Back to the story... I grabbed one of the pots labelled "unknown linearis complex" and felt the pot tug back at me. I figured it just hit against its neighbor, so I ignored it. I tipped it upside down and dumped out all the soil, carefully broke up the pot-shaped mass, NO TUBER! "Curious," I thought to myself, "I'm sure there was a plant in that pot this summer." So I went for the neighbor of the first one, only to solve the mystery of the missing tuber...

There, stuck in the mesh of my benchtop, was a very long, very skinny tuber that had grown right down through the center drainage hole for about 2 inches and down through the top of my bench! When I grabbed the pot it caught in the narrowing diamond-shaped mesh and yanked the entire tuber right out of the bottom of the pot through the drainage hole - no damage to the tuber!

Of course one out of five had to grow down through one of the holes on the edge of the bench where it's wedged between the mesh and the side. That one will have to get hacksawed out this week...

OK, you've had your laugh now go to bed.

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