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[Aroid-l] Aroids in the News, Part II

  • Subject: [Aroid-l] Aroids in the News, Part II
  • From: ted.held@us.henkel.com
  • Date: Wed, 20 Dec 2006 16:23:35 -0500

Those fascinating aroids are making the popular science news as well. I have just come across an article about the production of warmth in aroid flowers in a British magazine called New Scientist (14 October, 2006).

The article is entitled "Hot flowers" and covers some territory familiar to those on this list and those who have read Deni Bown's excellent aroid book. This time we have some specific names: the Dead Horse Arum, Philodendron bipinnatifidum, Philodendron solimoesense, and Symplocarpus foetidus [skunk cabbage] with a nice picture of this last. (Did the author and I get all the names spelled correctly?)

Here is a quotation summarized from Roger Seymour of the University of Adelaide that will give a sense of the tone:

"Seymour has discovered in Philodendron solimoesense and the Amazon water lily that the reproductive chamber stays hot for at least a day after the pollinators arrive. Far from being a prison, Seymour says the chamber is more like a nightclub where the beetles can hang out and take advantage of the hot environment to mate. Everyone's a winner: the plant gets pollinated, the beetles get lucky."

As before, anyone who wants a scan of this gem of science can e-mail me privately.

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