Re: Aroid-L P. XANADU
Julius, you just made my day! Your
wonderful "voice" is a true treasure on Aroid l.|
Due to my illness I am only now able to add my voice to this discussion.
P. xanadu is a good species of Philodendron within the group of
Meconostigmas or self-headers. It differs from all other species of
Meconostigmas in details of the sexual parts of its spadix, the shape
of the leaf scars on the rhizomes, shape of leaf blade, intravaginal
squamules, etc.. The color of its spathe is different to P.
bipinnatifidium (we must remember that it was brought into cultivation
from Australia with a note that it was a ''sport'' of P.
bipinnatifidium), and blooms more sparingly, and seemingly in the
cooler season here in Florida. It was most probably received in
Australia as as seed ex: the nursery of Alvim Seidel in Brazil.
In tissue culture it becomes very ''plastic'' in its vegetative
features, mainly by the leaf blades retaining juvenile features
(reduced rear lobes of the leaf blade) for many years, up to 20 years
or more, even when planted in the ground.
I have a friend in Miami who is VERY interested in this species, and he
has had access to several batches of tissue cultured ''starts''
(thousands per batch!) of this species. He has chosen for his
collection any plant which did not conform to its siblings/clones, and
has about 50+ or so of them. What wonderful variations! Some robust
and MUCH larger than their siblings, some with darker petioles, etc.
We shall see what they look like as adult plants. This points out that
in ADDITION to the variations caused by the massive doses of chem. done
during the tissue culture process (to deliberately cause
multiplication, clumping, AND dwarfing), that there probably is a
genitic factor playing into the vegetative variation in this species.
In older literature (by Dr. Eduardo Goncalves?) I recall reading that
there is a group of plants in the highlands which were being discussed
as possible P. ''selloums'' which bore a purple/scarlet spathe, while
other P. ''selloums''/P. bipinnatifidiums bore blooms with green
Then there is the David Woolsey plant ex: Leland Miyano in Hawaii which
was wild-collected in Brazil, and which I discussed and pictured in my
most recent article on P. xanadu in Aroideana. Its leaves certainly
bears a VERY close resemblance to adult P. xanadu ex: tissue culture
(see my article!).
Then there are the plants grown here in the U.S.A. from seed ex:
Seidel, like Airlans, Brians, etc., these could very well either BE P.
xanadu or related to it!!
We must wait and observe what the blooms and sexual parts of their
spadices on these plants look like if and when they bloom!
I am convinced that there is a complex of Meconostigmas in the wilds of
Brazil into which P. xanadu falls (or which ARE P. xanadu!) which bear
blooms w/ purple-scarlat spathes. Maybe we will get lucky, and one of
the many Philodendron experts who work in Brazil will come up with a
review of this group in the near future??
I hope that this note may clear up some questions.
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