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Re: [Aroid-l] Ghosts, Again

  • Subject: Re: [Aroid-l] Ghosts, Again
  • From: a san juan kalim1998@yahoo.com
  • Date: Thu, 23 Jun 2005 09:20:18 -0700 (PDT)

Question is, are there any aroids that have evolved to
be able to absorb such nutrients? Or are you just
saying you'd like to be able to induce any aroid to be
able to absorb nutrients this way? The problem may be
that there is no pathways available to these aroids to
ingest and process substances in this way.

--- ted.held@us.henkel.com wrote:

> Well, I don't seem to have provoked much of a
> discussion on how aroids 
> without chlorophyl can long survive. Feeding them
> with a carbohydrate base 
> food does seem to be the only route, albeit with the
> risk of 
> simultaneously feeding unwanted fungi, bacteria, and
> soil insects. Here 
> are some additional thoughts.
> 
> As I pointed out before, we have the analog of
> parasitic plants and 
> plant-like things, which tap into viable sap flowing
> in host species and 
> make their living that way. There are also plants,
> such as what are known 
> as terrestrial orchids, which pair symbiotically
> with soil fungi to 
> acquire and share essential nutrients that neither
> can manage on their 
> own. This orchid arrangement allows the plants to
> survive for several 
> seasons underground, with no leaf production, and
> revive with no apparent 
> deterioration when conditions allow. Terrestrial
> orchids deprived of this 
> fragile symbiosis usually die quickly. That is why
> it is futile, in most 
> cases, to try to transplant wild terrestrial orchids
> to home gardens. This 
> symbiosis may either occur with aroids or be a model
> that can make 
> plausible carbohydrate acquisition by some other
> pathway by a ghost plant.
> 
> We have to recognize here that we are speaking of
> two classes of essential 
> uptakes by plants. First there are the nutrients. By
> this I mean the 
> typical nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (NPK),
> so-called trace 
> nutrients (several elements), and probably some
> small molecules that elude 
> ready identification. Presumably ghost plants are
> able to perform this 
> usual task as well as fully-equipped plants with
> chlorophyl. The second 
> class of nutrient is the one that contains the main
> energy-containing 
> substances. These compounds are the carbohydrates,
> fats, and proteins and 
> comprise compounds that can be metabolized for
> caloric needs and the main 
> components of tissue construction. Plants are
> usually thought to make 
> these materials by photosynthesis. For animals,
> "food" consists primarily 
> of these substances, acquired by eating organic
> matter originally built 
> from photosynthesis. The mineral and "vitamin"
> nutrients are gathered 
> along the way, by and large as an incidental of
> normal eating. If a plant 
> finds itself a ghost, it must receive NPK nutrients
> as well as calories 
> from some source or starve.
> 
> Clearly, ghost plants are not making anything by
> photosynthesis because we 
> assume that it is established science that
> chlorophyl is necessary for 
> this activity. If they are able to live after
> exhausting their own stored 
> materials in their seeds or bulbs, or whatever other
> reservoirs are 
> available, it must mean they are getting these bulky
> supplies by another 
> method. Absorption from the environment in some way
> seems to be the only 
> available option.
> 
> How much caloric matter may be necessary for a plant
> to continue to exist 
> may be approximated  by how large its reservoir is.
> If a seedling's 
> reserve weighs a gram and that reserve takes a month
> to deplete, then a 
> plant of its type and size will need roughly a gram,
> dry weight, of 
> solublized caloric nutrition absorbed into its
> system every month. If a 
> fist-sized bulb is drawn down in a season, then
> perhaps 500 or 1000 grams 
> of dry weight caloric matter may be required to keep
> the plant going for a 
> season. The idea would be to figure out how to meter
> out this amount of 
> material over time and devise a broth most suitable
> for plant uptake.
> 
> Pouring on excess amounts of material would, indeed,
> encourage fungi and 
> gnats to take over. Pouring on caloric matter in a
> form impervious to 
> absorption would also be a waste. But the
> appropriate soup, dripped in (or 
> on) carefully seems entirely feasible.
> 
> The practical uses for such techniques may extend
> beyond keeping a ghost 
> alive. It could be a method to assist a wounded
> plant over a rough patch 
> in its life. It could be a method for enhancing the
> growth of healthy 
> plants for other purposes. And it would be just
> nifty to know it is 
> possible to do it.
> 
> My initial thought is that perhaps one of the media
> broths used for 
> bacteria cultures might be a start. These contain a
> base of caloric matter 
> as well as a wealth of smaller nutrients. Has anyone
> on the list ever 
> heard of such a thing?>
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> 



		
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