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Re: [aroid-l] Amorphophallus FAQ part 3

  • Subject: Re: [aroid-l] Amorphophallus FAQ part 3
  • From: "Randy Story" story@caltech.edu
  • Date: Thu, 03 Oct 2002 10:41:33 -0700

>  Hi Randy,
>> I'm a little confused about your perspective of classifying anything as
>> indoors or outdoors, even though that may make perfect horticultural sense to
>> a specific grower in a specific climate.  Basically, they were all born
>> outside ... someplace.


I reread my original post (below) and I guess I really don't think that I
said that.  If what I said could be interpreted that way, sorry, it wasn't
my intent.  I am definitely curious whether people can grow them inside for
part of the year where the growing season is very short, and outside when
the weather permits.  I received a post that suggests this is in fact the

I am very pleased to hear that people can and do grow these inside.  I will
include that in the FAQ.

On another note, I noticed that I said that Christmas is the wrong season
for an Amorphophallus Christmas (or other holiday) tree.  I forgot about the
southern hemisphere!


> Jason,
> Great question.  Do you mean the tropical Amorph's that can't be grown
> outside in a strongly seasonal climate?  So will they get enough light (and
> humidity) to grow OK and increase in size every year and ultimately bloom?
> I'm curious as well and also wondering whether there are some that can hack
> it as indoor/outdoor plants.  I'm in zone 10 (S. California) but we still
> can't grow some of the tropical plants that grow outdoors in S. Florida
> because we don't have the near constant warm, humid air.
> The broader question of whether any of these plants, including those that
> most of us can grow outside (say A. konjac), can be grown entirely (and
> again increase and ultimately bloom) inside is also interesting.
> Wouldn't a six-foot konjac or paeoniifolius make a cool indoor "tree"?
> Someone must have tried this, even if just temporarily...  Too bad they
> (usually) grow in the wrong season for Christmas!
> Randy
> p.s.  I have Sauromatum (Typhonium) venosum berries that are ripe right now.
> Not the hardest-to-find species, but it still might be fun to grow from
> seed.  Free, of course.

>From: Riley2362@aol.com
>To: aroid-l@lists.ncsu.edu
>Subject: Re: [aroid-l] Amorphophallus FAQ part 3
>Date: Thu, Oct 3, 2002, 5:56 AM

> Hi Randy,
> I'm a little confused about your perspective of classifying anything as
> indoors or outdoors, even though that may make perfect horticultural sense to
> a specific grower in a specific climate.  Basically, they were all born
> outside ... someplace.
> The exact reverse perspective, that some of us face is that we grow
> everything indoors.  In an apartment, with natural window light and
> fluorescent lights, amorphophallus wake up when they want and go dormant when
> they want and basically when they are growing you give them light and water,
> and when they are dormant you stop watering and put them in a closet, or some
> such place to rest.  I know many people that have successfully grown amorphs
> for years with this routine, although probably only the more common species
> such as A. konjac and bulbifer.  Now that some of us grow more uncommon
> species with the same culture in mind, we find one of the major problems is
> not dormancy or season, but whether they want or need a wet or dry dormancy,
> so people tend to lose their tubers from drying up or rotting.  Given the
> above basic premise, some of us do employ other horticultural options such as
> putting plants outdoors (back yard/rooftop/fire escape) in the summer - we
> call this "sending our plants to summer camp".  However, that implies that
> they are growing in the summer and dormant in the winter which we all know is
> not the case for many of the "tropical" growers where season are erratic.
> It would never occur to us that people in Florida or California would have a
> problem growing anything because they have more cultural options than we do,
> although I know many people in both states who would not dream of growing a
> plant indoors.
> Just a slightly different perspective for your FAQ's.  I was once asked to
> edit a horticultural encyclopedia where 90% of the information was geared to
> growing in a "stove house" in England and I was to translate that to
> horticulture in the US.  They gave up on the project because it made no sense
> unless I did a complete rewrite.
> Good luck - Michael

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