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  Araceae
From: "Dr. Tom Croat" tcroat at LEHMANN.MOBOT.ORG> on 2000.05.22 at 15:20:27(4612)
Chris:

It heats up through a process called "thermogenesis" which is
triggered by acetosalycitic acid. It may generate so much heat as to be
30? above air temperature and its purpose, so far as is known, is to
generate volatile compounds which in turn attract insects. In most
genera, including the Monstera you saw, this happens at dusk at which
time the large scarab beetle pollinators are actively flying. These
beetles visit the inflorescences of aroids to aggregate, have sex and eat
edible but unessential parts of the inflorescence (in the case of
Philodendron this is the sterile male flowers which contain nutrient-rich
lipids. The heat peak is timed precisely for this activity and may occur
on the following evening as well when the stamens are opening and they
are leaving, getting themselves covered with pollen in the process of
their departure. For the beetles it is just one long orgy!

Tom Croat

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From: "Dr. Tom Croat" tcroat at LEHMANN.MOBOT.ORG> on 2000.05.22 at 15:21:20(4613)
Chris:

I forgot to answer your question about relevent literature on
thermogenesis. My student Jane Whitehill has written an excellent
review paper on this subject which will be published in our special aroid
edition of the Monographs in Systematic Botany of the Missouri
Botanical Garden, hopefully sometime this year. Perhaps in the
meantime she could suggest to you some of the better articles on the
subject.

Tom

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From: Regferns at aol.com on 2000.05.23 at 14:54:27(4619)
To add to the debate, currently there are several Amorphophallus species in
bloom in my collection and we notice that at dawn and dusk, the aromas that
these blooms produce are at their zenith and quite overwhelming. During the
course of the day, the blooms generally do not produce much of an odor. It
appears that the plants are seeking pollinators which are apt to come out in
the cooler parts of the day--dawn and dusk. Does this sound correct?

Reggie Whitehead
South Miami, FL

From: "Wilbert Hetterscheid" hetter at worldonline.nl> on 2000.05.24 at 14:52:27(4628)
Reggie,

Flowering in early evening for Amorphs is indeed the general pattern and
figures when you consider that most pollinators are carrion beetles and
like, which fly at dusk.

Wilbert

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From: "Hans E.A. Boos" trekmaster2001 at yahoo.com> on 2000.05.30 at 15:20:52(4655)
Dear Tom,
Was answering your query about Rupert Seemungal when I
touched something on my computer in error and it cut
me off the internet. So I reconnected and couldnt find
your original message. So here goes. Once more into
the breach.
I was the cutator of the Emperor Valley Zoo in Port of
Spain Trinidad and Tobago for 25 years and have
recently retired.
Julius has often talked of you, and I have just
returned from a magical ten days of a reunion with him
and our old friend Joep Moonen in Cayenne.
Rupert Seemungal was the brother of the brilliant
Lionel Augustine Seemungal, a dear and old friend, who
sadly is ina decline due to possibly Alseimers
disease..
Rupert was always thought of as some sort of eccentric
nut, and eventually went to New York City to work in a
bookstore to be near to the opera, of which he was
some sort of expert. He disappeared one winter and we
heard that he was found frozen in a drift when the
thaw set in, but that may be just another story. In
any case I believe he m,ust be dead.
Maybe one day you can visit Trinidad and we will meet.
I'll look forward to that.
Cheers,

Hans

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From: "Cooper, Susan L." SLCooper at scj.com> on 2003.01.02 at 06:44:07(9758)
I've heard of Potty-mouth, but never Potyvirus!

Susan

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