Mark Dimmitt's A. titanum


The A.titanum shown here were grown from the seed which came from Palmengarten's index seminum in 1993. The three seeds began to germinate almost immediately, but it took 18 months for the first leaf to unfurl completely.

All plants are fertilized heavily, with every watering through an injector at 100 to 150 ppm N. These Amorphophallus seedlings have been making two to three leads each year so far. During the last year there was only one leaf per corm, and each lasted about 14 months.

The greenhouse runs about 90 degrees F during the day (cooled by evaporation), and 55 to 75 at night, winter and summer respectively.

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New leaves emerging from the ground on October 5, 1997, after less than a month of "dormancy". They are quite synchronous this time, and about two weeks old. The larger (farther) pot is 24 inches diameter and 18 inches deep.

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October 14, in what I like to call the "crinoid" stage. Notice that the smaller plant has split its corm and is producing two leaves. Both clones have done this during their first few years. They are the same age (four years, third growth cycle). Other plants visible (some only on the full photo linked below) are a Dracontium pittieri (tall petiole with stunted leaf on far left); Tapeinochilus annanasae and Costus barbatus (the gingers in center background); Vanilla roscheri (the leafless vine); Aechmea chantinii (bromeliad at far right), and Catasetums (upper left).

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A closeup of the smaller leaf in the crinoid stage.

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November 2, Jared Shortman admires the larger leaf unfolding just inches below the 9-foot roof. The petiole is 6 feet 2 inches from ground to the trifurcation, five inches thick at the base. Tom Gibson at the U of Wisconsin told me that titanum can flower at this size. I hope he's right, because I don't know what I'll do next year. I gave duplicates of both clones to Biosphere II, where I presume they'll have ample room.

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All photos Copyright © 1997 Mark A. Dimmitt, who is also the author of the text.

Page design Krzysztof Kozminski

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