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Re: Making bulbils?

  • Subject: Re: Making bulbils?
  • From: "Randall M. Story" <story@caltech.edu>
  • Date: Wed, 5 Jun 2002 13:44:18 -0500 (CDT)

Hi Brian,

Thanks for your response.  I guess my question is in some sense whether
bulbils are essentially masses of generic "tuber tissue" that form on
leaves.  If so, then they could simply grow by "reprogramming" leaf tissue
to form "tuber tissue" so as to form what is more or less a tumor on the
leaf.  Some pictures I have seen of bulbils seem to look like this,
superficially at least.  Then if such a "tumor" is planted, it might develop
the complete range of cells necessary for growth.  Such a simple switch in
cell type is easy to imagine developmentally, much more simple than somehow
creating a "real" tuber (presumably with a range of specialized cells) on
the leaf.  Just speculation on my part...

Or maybe cells that will eventually form bulbils have already specialized by
the time other leaf cells have specialized???

Are there any guesses as to whether the common ancestor to Amorphophallus
had a bulbil making ability that was lost in most of the other guys, or
whether it was an "invention" in only a few species? (molecular
phylogeneticists in the audience??).  If it was lost in the majority of
species, they may still have some sort of latent ability to do this, even if
it is some sort of specialized structure instead of just some tumor-like
mass of cells.


>From: "brian williams" <pugturd50@hotmail.com>
>To: Multiple recipients of list AROID-L <aroid-l@mobot.org>
>Subject: Re: Making bulbils?
>Date: Tue, Jun 4, 2002, 11:04 PM

> I have chopped a few bulb up and placed in a humid place and have had bulbs
> form from each chunk of bulb. I have also had a few forms that don't usually
> set off bulb that I have cut not all the way but cut a mark into and placed
> fungicide. This mark or scare I have found will make some species split in
> two. I have not made any true experiments up just me messing trying new
> things.
> Has anyone else tried anything like this?
> Just to add in on this message. I have been growing for a few years and have
> found that their are manly two ways for me to grow Amorphophallus well here
> in Kentucky. I have one bed made in the greenhouse with normal river bottom
> dirt. Kinda like the stuff used in a garden the normal brown farm dirt. All
> the amorphos and Dracontiums love that.
> But for pots. I find I use metro mix 360 with a common mix of powdered
> spaghnum moss and perlite. Half a bag of metro mix to every bag of the
> spaghnum moss. This works very well on the amorphos as well as Philo
> cuttings.
> I have seen some florida friends growing them in just about everything from
> mulch to pine nuggets. But after all the experiments here. This works best.
> A have not had a rot problem sense. THANKS Hope this info helps a few out.
> _________________________________________________________________
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