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Re: Re: Amorphophallus bulbifer stories

To Jody/Albert and all,

If it is any help at all, I have noticed that Amorphs, and be very
unpredictable as far as their growth cycle.  Some seem to come up early,
some come up late, go down early, go down late, etc..

I have regularly observed that species act differently from year to year
with little explanation.  I can recently remember last "winter" in Dewey's
shadehouse, plants were "sprouting" in November and later.  There was of
course no explanation for this, but I do have a theory:

Most Amorphophallus plants come from areas that are extremely tropical.  I
dont just mean tropical, I mean "extremely" tropical.  Even much more so
than S. Florida (where I live).  What this translates to is that the
climatic environment of all of these plants tends to be very stable and
they generally do not experience the extremes we do.  This may account for
plants not acting with "super" predictability in cultivation.  For example,
my A. titanum specimen plants seem to always go dormant in the "spring"
very much like the ones at Fairchild gardens.  Now, I am in the Northern
hemisphere, the same as where the plants grow naturally, yet "springtime"
does not seem like an appropriate time to go dormant.  You would imagine
that "winter" would make more sense, so that the plant would avoid adverse
weather conditions (lack of rain, cooler or colder temps, etc...)

Another issue is the "skipped season", I have read that some plants, just
outright can stay dormant and miss an entire season.  My A. curvist. plant
is not yet up this year and upon further inspection does not look like it
is going to even try.  It has been in moist soil for well over 5 months and
it is still solid, unrotted and yet it has not even sent out roots.  It
looks like it is going to sleep this one out.

Who knows, they are just weird!

Marc Burack

aroid-l@mobot.org wrote:
> Albert,

This will certainly not help you unravel your apparent mystery, but I could add
that my A. bulbifer was the first to emerger (from the ground) this year,
some time
in May. The bulbils from last year that I had sown in a container earlier this
spring emerged about a month later. My largest plant has a leaf about 3
feet tall
now, but still has not flowered. How big does this species need to be before it

My A. paenifolius emerged in June and the leaf reached 4 feet. This one
also has
not flowered...again same question: how big 'til it blooms?

Jody (in Miami)

Albert Huntington wrote:

> Hello, List.
>   I would like to bring up a couple of observations about my A. bulbifer and
> ask some questions.
>   I keep my A. bulbifer in a greenhouse (low 65F, high 90F, Humidity
>80%+), and
> around last September I noticed that the leaf ( about 2ft high ) was
> to wilt, perhaps in preparation for dormancy of some sort.  Since the
>plant had
> been growing pretty vigorously, I figured that I would try out a
>procedure that
> I had read on the list for taking petiole cuttings, and harvest a few of the
> bulbils along the way.  I removed the leaf from the tuber and cut the petiole
> into 2-3" long sections which I sealed into a plastic bag with some damp
> sphagnum peat.  I stored the tuber in the fridge over the winter,
>figuring that
> I did not have room for the plant with everything else overwintering in my
> greenhouse, should it decide to come back up.  I also stored a bunch of
> tubers that had formed attached to the big tuber.
>   Much to my amazement, the petioles did in fact form even more little tubers
> after a month or two.
>   Now, in March, I figured it was time to pot out the tubers, so I took them
> from the fridge, where they had kept relatively well, and I planted them in
> pots in the greenhouse.  I then proceeded to wait.  And wait.  And wait.
>   About early June, a few of the small tubers had sprouted, but not the big
> one.   Now, in July, I finally see a small pink shoot on top of my bigger
> tuber.  Some more of the smaller tubers I had potted up are beginning to
> sprout.  Every single other Amorph I have, including the ones Wilbert
>sent out
> this spring, is pretty much in full leaf by now.  This is somewhat
>puzzling to
> me.
>   Does anyone have any suggestions as to why my A. bulbifer and its offshoots
> should be poking their heads out so late this year?  Is it because I stressed
> the plant by cutting off its head a bit early?  Does it have something to do
> with its long siesta in the fridge?  Is A. bulbifer just a late species?
> Anybody else have any experiences like this with other species?
>   Thanks in advange for your answers...
> --Albert
> =====
> Albert Huntington           San Jose, CA U.S.A.
>            Visit my greenhouse at:
> http://www.geocities.com/RainForest/Jungle/1436
> -----------------------------------------------

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