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  Amorphophallus titanum
From: Don Burns <burns at mobot.org> on 1997.01.03 at 13:54:07(45)
A note to all you folks keeping track of A. titanum..... my plants are
beginning their winter slumber. One has gone dormant and
several others are showing symptoms. Several of the plants have recently
shot up new growth, however, and I am concerned that the tubers may be
exhausted. If they go dormant I may be without tubers - any thoughts
about this? Fortunately the weather here has been quite warm, 78-82 degF
lately so they may stay up long enough to go dormant with a tuber at the

From: "Carlo A. Balistrieri" <cabalist at facstaff.wisc.edu> on 1997.01.31 at 14:10:56(272)
Dear Aroiders,
If anyone has any spare A. titanum tubers (small) please contact me privately.


From: MJ Hatfield <oneota at ames.net> on 1997.05.05 at 04:30:34(712)
I believe my A.titanum is going dormant (I hope it's not dying)for the
first time. Slowly, one leaflet at a time has turned yellow and now the
petiole is beginning to slump. I have quit watering. Should I wait until
the petiole and leaves are completely limp before unpotting and
inspecting? Should I repot it in fresh soil in a larger pot? Should I
then wait, patiently, for several months until there are signs of new
growth, at which time I should I begin watering?
Thanks for any expert advice.
MJ Hatfield

From: Malvo25 at aol.com on 1999.01.04 at 02:40:06(2871)
Two questions:

First, would you expect me to have any success trying to grow A. titanum in
North Shore Long Island (zone 6 or 7) either in the ground or in a container.
I can dig up the bulb, or bring the container inside to a greenhouse for the
winter that is kept at 50 degrees.

Second, if there is any hope of growing one, where can I get it?

I tried once before when Plant Delights had some available, but it barely
grew, and turned to mush when I dug it up in October.

From: plantnut at macconnect.com (Dewey Fisk) on 1999.01.30 at 03:19:19(2968)
I have available a very limited quantity of small Amorphophallus titanum.
If you are interested, send me a *private* e-mail.

Moderators will trash replys to the list.

Word of caution - International orders can not be considered because of
Phytosanitary Certificate restrictions.

From: "Paul Kruse" pkruse2000 at earthlink.net> on 2000.02.06 at 17:34:56(4057)
I am a retired biological oceanographer with a minor in botany, from the
University of Miami (C.G.).
In 1980 I planted three A. titanum corms in my yard at Naples, Florida. The
soil there is calcareous with a pH of around 8.2 and is poor in nutrients.
The area experiences long dry spells. In spite of these conditions, and
without any cultural assistance, the plants grew to about three feet in
height. They were exposed to quite a bit of direct sunlight. The plants
went dormant in the winter and came up the following spring. In 1983 two of
the plants produced dinner plate sized blooms. I did not write this up
because I felt the plants posed no cultural difficulties.
I moved to St. Croix (U.S.V.I.) in 1985. The soil and growing conditions
there were similar to Florida, with the exceptions of mild winters. Three
years ago I received a plant from a botanist friend of mine, who owned a
large commercial nursery on the island. Her two plants were between three
and four feet in height and had received no care. St. Croix is considered a
dry island and the summers there can often be a six months drought period.
When I dug up my plant there were no roots and the corm was about the size
of a grapefruit.
From: "Paul Kruse" pkruse2000 at mindspring.com> on 2000.03.16 at 04:07:30(4223)
I have been growing this plant since 1980 and a friend of mine would like a
specimen. I would appreciate it if you could suggest a commercial source .
I had previously found a source for young plants from stem cells.
Unfortunately I cannot relocate this source. Your assistance would be
sincerely appreciated. Paul Kruse. pkruse2000@mindspring.com

From: Plantbob at aol.com on 2000.03.17 at 04:01:26(4226)

There is a company in N.J. that has a few for sale. You can reach them thru
their web site which is: www.dragonagro.com

Good luck,

From: "Paul Kruse" pkruse2000 at mindspring.com> on 2000.03.18 at 01:57:45(4236)
Thank you for the dragonagro address. I will give it to my friend. Someone
else asked for the address if I got it, so I will foreward the address to
them. thanks again.

From: Piabinha at aol.com on 2000.03.18 at 05:16:16(4241)
another source for A. titanum might be plant delights nursery in NC. at
least it was listed in their catalog ($200) a few years ago, although it's
not listed in their latest one.

tsuh yang chen, nyc, USA

From: Plantbob at aol.com on 2000.03.18 at 05:25:45(4242)
Plants Delight has not had the A. titanum for a few years. They do have other
Amorphophallus which I have ordered and enjoyed.

From: "Bjoern Malkmus" bjoern.malkmus at verwaltung.uni-mainz.de> on 2000.07.09 at 02:39:26(5025)
Being back from Bonn I can tell you that it was impressive indeed,
not only the inflorescense (which unfortunately was fully opend only
from Thursday 7pm to Friday 11am), the fact that it was the third
largest of its kind in cultivation, but as well that only today some
estimated 10.000 more or less plant-addicts came to BG Bonn to
see it.

From: Marc Gibernau gibernau at cict.fr> on 2003.06.27 at 12:36:31(10358)
Dear Aroiders,

A short message to mention that Amorphophallus titanum is flowering (or
very soon) for the first time in France at the Botanical Garden of Brest.

All the best,


From: "David Ruland" <druland at atlantabotanicalgarden.org> on 2004.07.14 at 19:54:17(11756)
Hello all, would like to let anyone who is interested know that our Amorphophallus titanum here at the Atlanta Botanical Garden is due to bloom soon, probably in the next week or so. The tuber weighed in at about 80 lbs. when we repotted it at the end of June so hopefully it will be a big one. Will keep everyone posted as I know more. If anyone knows of any others blooming around now I would like to obtain some pollen.Come visit us. David Ruland

From: "Julius Boos" <ju-bo at msn.com> on 2004.07.14 at 23:46:37(11759)
>From: "David Ruland"
>Reply-To: aroid-l@lists.ncsu.edu
From: Plantbob at aol.com on 2004.07.18 at 02:04:44(11768)
Any word on the blooming time for the A. titanum in Atlanta??


From: "Charles Gramling" <chazmg1 at citlink.net> on 2004.07.18 at 03:21:58(11769)
Looks like this week
From: James Waddick <jwaddick at kc.rr.com> on 2004.07.26 at 13:51:44(11821)
Looks like this week
From: "David Ruland" <druland at atlantabotanicalgarden.org> on 2004.07.26 at 16:23:20(11823)
I again will venture a guess...Maybe Wednesday. I am surprised how long
it is taking. But it keeps growing. This morning I measured the height
at 6ft. 2 in.
David Ruland

From: "Bryant, Susan L." <SLBryant at scj.com> on 2004.07.26 at 16:26:50(11824)
Time to get out that flowered shirt, David!

To: aroid-l@lists.ncsu.edu
Subject: Re: [aroid-l] Amorphophallus titanum

From: Araceae <araceae at earthlink.net> on 2004.08.01 at 23:45:08(11905)
Has the Amorphophallus titanum bug been munching at you.... Want to
try your skill at getting the big smell? I have a few A. titanum
available. For information and a photo of a representative plant....
send an e-mail to araceae@earthlink.net with the subject line of
"Amorph. titanum". I get lots of junk mail and unless there is
something about a message that I recognize... the message gets
trashed - unopened...

From: Ronmchatton at aol.com on 2005.06.29 at 20:56:23(13078)
Please forgive the short commercial, but for those interested Worldwide Tropicals has fresh titanum seed available for as long as we can hold them. You can see the listing www.worldwidetropicals.com

Ron McHatton

From: "Dietmar Kiehlmann" Kiehlmann at gmx.de> on 2006.05.08 at 23:13:56(14131)
Hi all,

Never seen before: One specimen of A.titanum is going to flower with
3 inflorescences at Botanic Gardens Bonn! The tuber had the enormous
weight of 117 kg after the last growing period.

Gallery: http://botgart.uni-bonn.de/o_samm/gal06.html
Webcam: http://botgart.uni-bonn.de/titan2006.php

Best regards
Margret Kiehlmann

From: "snowsexotics" snowsexotics at cox.net> on 2006.05.09 at 00:54:30(14133)
I am unable to view the webcam....wondering if anyone else is also?


From: "Susan Cox" snalice at dslextreme.com> on 2006.05.09 at 04:18:22(14137)
The web cam says: 'noch oben'.......I wish it was 'knocked open'.

Could that mean 'not running at the moment'? The cam window is black.
OR........it's night there?

From: "Steve Hatfield" sehatfield at insightbb.com> on 2006.05.09 at 16:43:28(14143)
Way too cool!!! Are there any gardens in the Midwest US. (Im from Indiana)
Growing a titanium or a good selection of Amorphophallus??? I need to see

From: Susan B honeybunny442 at yahoo.com> on 2006.05.09 at 18:32:20(14146)
UW-Madison in Wisconsin has flowered a few, they have
the purple spadix with spathe crossed left over right.
see Big Bucky:
(don't yell Wilbert, I haven't updated the name
changes you told me about)

They have some Dracontium but no other Aroids of
interest. They probably have some leafy things....
They are re-doing their greenhouses this summer so I
don't know if they are open.
St. Louis?? also had one that flowered a tiny one that
was about 2 feet high, it was really cute!

From: ironious2 at yahoo.com (E Morano) on 2008.05.03 at 19:32:13(17540)
I have some Titanum's that have gone dormant. I need to know how to care for the dormant bulbs. They dont look like most other amorphs that can be stored dry but I could be wrong so thats why Im asking.
Thank you


From: fzeren at aol.com (fzeren at aol.com) on 2008.05.04 at 17:09:54(17548)
soil sould be moist, a wel, well, well drained potting mix soil. Cover atleast 2 inch above the tuber. take tuber out ( once a month ?)and check for?soft spots/rots?. Dont add any plant food into water during dormant season, temperature should be around 85 F( Dont fluctuate temperature) . It should be OK, hopely

From: bill.weaver at hp.com (Weaver, Bill) on 2008.05.05 at 21:26:56(17556)
I'd really suggest not handling the corm during dormancy. The possibility of injuring
the corm and actually inducing a rot is too great. I don't even re-pot it until the
corm shows signs of new growth.


From: "Jared R. McKinley" <jaredr.mckinley at gmail.com> on 2009.03.07 at 00:13:04(19165)
Yay! I got my first four seedlings. They look great.

I would love to hear everyone's experiences with this species. I have been around these plants before, but I would like to hear what various techniques people have used.

I intend on pushing three of them, keeping one on a moderate level in case I get too greedy. I am growing organically, and will be using a fungal-based compost tea and feeding fungal based foods for the soil. If this sounds like Greek sorry, I have totally abandoned the use of water soluble fertilizers. I am taking a more pro-biotic approach to growing EVERYTHING. Though I am not judgmental about those who stay with the old ways of doing things. I wonder how many people have tried to grow plants like aroids this way?

Anyway, like I said, I will be pushing this plant. I live in Tucson, in a very hot climate. My plant will be in a humid greenhouse, and I will not let temperatures get above 95. I might even try a little lower, though titanums can usually take good heat from what I hear.

This plant will get really good sun too (pretty much a filtered full sun--33% shade cloth) which here is pretty damn bright.

Even as seedlings I have to day, these plants are pretty frickin' handsome.

((Expecto Patronum))

Jared R. McKinley



From: Eduardo Gomes Goncalves <eduardo.goncalves at inhotim.org.br> on 2011.02.03 at 15:34:32(21851)
Dear fellows,

I have a silly (but important) question for you. As far as I know, Amophophallus is a masculine word, am I correct?

In Latin, except for the name of traditional trees (Malus, Pyrus, etc), all names ended in -us are male names. So it is correct to say that all adjective epithets in Amorphophallus species end with -us (A. gomboczianus, A. hirsutus, A lunatus, A. glaucophyllus, etc).

Why Amophophallus titanum is not A. titanus? Other species with a similar epithet (I don't remember none in plant kingdom, but I know Dorcus titanus - a beetle)... Wilbert, do you have any reason for this?

Very best wishes,




From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2011.02.06 at 02:49:02(21853)
Dear Eduardo,

I am sure than Dan dealt with this in his 1987 Aroideana [10(3): 15-25] paper, but I don't have it to hand at the moment since I'm in Pinang.




From: "Marek Argent" <abri1973 at wp.pl> on 2011.02.06 at 03:50:15(21854)
Dear Eduardo,

A good point.

The suffix -um is neutral and it fits to all grammatic genera:

Also feminine botanical genera species epithet can end with -um,

the examples are: Arisaema triphyllum, Alocasia scalprum, Aglaonema commutatum, Syngonium auritum...

But indeed, I have never heard another construction like Amorphophallus titanum.

I always wondered why Alocasia
macrorrhizos is a proper name, the epithet is of Greek origin,

and I don't know why it is named so. The suffix -os is masculine in Greek, and Alocasia is feminine.

And what do you think about the name Synandrospadix vermitoxicus?

I can't find anywhere what is the gender of the word "spadix". Isn't it feminine?

There is also one important note,

many people erroneously take genera ending with -is as masculine, but it is feminine,

Ariopsis peltata or in other families Iris pumila, Clematis lanuginosa etc.

Also the genera ending with -as are feminine: Anubias gigantea, Zamioculcas zamiifolia, Cycas revoluta.

But... the pine tree, Pinus seems to be a masculine word, and we have Pinus sylvestris, P. excelsa, P. nigra,

while some other species of pine end usually with -us: like Pinus strobus.

Strange things...




From: "E.Vincent Morano" <ironious2 at yahoo.com> on 2011.02.06 at 07:06:19(21857)
Well we know what a phallus is right? There just isnt any other way of saying it.

I refuse to participate in the recession,
Erin Vincent Morano



From: "John" <criswick at spiceisle.com> on 2011.02.06 at 19:32:16(21868)
Curiously, the slang
word “bite” in French,
for “penis”, is feminine.

However, this is not
the point. A Latin scholar is required to tell us why some epithets end in us
and others in um.

I have already asked



From: Eduardo Gomes Goncalves <eduardo.goncalves at inhotim.org.br> on 2011.02.06 at 23:11:18(21872)
Dear Pete,

I will take a look on it tomorrow morning. Thanks a lot... I knew there was good reason, mainly because Dan worked on it.

Very best wishes,




From: Alistair Hay <ajmhay at hotmail.com> on 2011.02.06 at 23:15:32(21873)
I think the point is that not all speces epithets are adjectival, so they do not necessarily have to agree with the gender of the genus.

For example in Alocasia scalprum the epithet is a noun which happens to be neuter: the knife alocasia. An adjectival latin epithet in Alocasia would indeed be feminine: Alocasia indica: the indian Alocasia.

Aglaonema is a neuter genus, as are Cyrtosperma, Arisaema and Syngonium. So its Aglaonema rotundum, Cyrtosperma cuspidispathum, Arisaema concinnum and Syngonium chiapense when the epithet is adjectival.

In Amorphophallus titanum, the epithet is not an adjective. I am uncertain but fairly sure it is the genitive plural, meaning "of the titans" or something like that. It does not mean the adjective "titanic".




From: Eduardo Gomes Goncalves <eduardo.goncalves at inhotim.org.br> on 2011.02.07 at 15:12:50(21884)
Dear Alistair

You are absolutely correct. I have re-checked this morning and "titanum" is the genitive plural of "titan" so it means exactly "of the titans". Since it came from greek, its declension is anomalous.

Many thanks for your help.

Very best wishes,




From: Hannon <othonna at gmail.com> on 2011.02.08 at 14:24:26(21893)
Dear Eduardo,

Thank you for this inquiry, it is good to know these things.


So would we have Alocasia scalprifolia for an adjectival epithet then?

Regarding the example of Pinus, I believe all tree genera are regarded as feminine, no matter their origin. How lines are drawn between trees and non-trees I do not know.


Dylan Hannon



From: Eduardo Gomes Goncalves <eduardo.goncalves at inhotim.org.br> on 2011.02.09 at 11:13:58(21904)
Dear Dylan,

All "tradicional" trees are female in Latin. The question is that "tradicional" are trees defined as so. Syagrus is a female word because it is considered a tree but probably Cicerus never mentioned it in his classical texts. Moreover, we are not exactly sure that all palms are trees (mainly in Syagrus, with plants of some species reaching no more than 30 cm tall).

The borderline is quite fuzzy and tricky.

Very best wishes,




From: Alistair Hay <ajmhay at hotmail.com> on 2011.02.10 at 01:13:36(21923)
The gender of a genus is unrelated to the habit of the plants it contains, though I think it is true to say that a majority of generic names are feminine. Calophyllum is a neuter genus of trees, and Elaeocarpus is a masculine one, for example.


On 09/02/2011, at 10:13 PM, Eduardo Gomes Goncalves wrote:



From: "Marek Argent" <abri1973 at wp.pl> on 2011.02.12 at 15:54:55(21939)

One more thing: Quercus, Fagus, Fraxinus, Malus, Pyrus, Prunus, Pinus, Alnus, Eucalyptus - all they end with -us suggesting a masculine gender while most of their specific epithets are feminine.

Can a Latin feminine word end with -us?




From: Alex Popovkin <popovkin at gmail.com> on 2011.02.12 at 18:43:24(21941)
Marek asked: Can a Latin feminine word end with -us?

Some of the feminine nouns of the 3rd declension: e.g., palus 'marsh, bog, swamp', virtus 'virtue'.

Alex Popovkin, Bahia, Brazil
-12.01 -38.02



From: Alistair Hay <ajmhay at hotmail.com> on 2011.02.12 at 21:31:49(21947)
If only Dan Nicolson were around to answer this :)

On my *limited* knowledge, it is complicated by that fact that, although we call these "latin" names, they are really "botanical latin" which is a kind of bastardized multicultural fruit salad, and one generally cannot tell the gender of a generic name just by looking at it, unless you have specialist knowledge of the "language".

As a very very crude generalization, generic names are almost always nouns, usually feminine and tend to be from (or moulded into) greek, while species epithets are generally from latin and either nouns or adjectives.  There are many many exceptions though. Some are drawn from mediaeval latinized names themselves drawn from other languages besides greek or latin. Some are drawn from words in modern languages which may or may not have any gender themselves: e.g. the palm Licuala. What happens as a rule to the gender as words are transposed from various languages into botanical latin is a bit beyond me, I'm afraid. Dan had a paper on it in Taxon in 1994 which I don't have. 

Here's a few examples of things which I have found confusing at one time or another!

Genus names which commemorate people are nearly always feminine regardless of the gender of the person: Hence Bognera, but Hottarum is neuter because it is a portmanteau of Hotta and the neuter Arum.

Some generic names which "look" feminine are neuter - as for example Aglaonema and Cyrtosperma, mentioned before. Neuter by the way is a definite linguistic gender: it is not "neutral" in the sense of being able to take any gender ending of adjective. A neuter noun must have an adjective in neuter form: so Aglaonema commutatum. And as you have pointed out, some generic names which "look" latin masculine, like Prunus, are feminine.

Some adjectival species epithets are not latin: macrorrhizos is an example. It is greek, and both the feminine and masculine form of this adjective are spelled the same way: Hence Alocasia macrorrhizos. The neuter ending is -on, and this plant started out its nomenclatural life as Arum macrorrhizon, because Arum is neuter. When it was first transferred to Alocasia, the epithet was changed to the feminine-looking and widely used but grammatically incorrect "macrorrhiza", later corrected by Dan.

Some species epithets which look like adjectives are not: e.g. those ending in -icola are nouns (meaning  inhabitant of ....  so monticola = inhabitant of mountains; vulcanicola = inhabitant of volcanoes). So it is Alocasia (f) monticola, Calochortus (m) paludicola and Arum (n) rupicola, and the gender of the genus does not affect the ending of the epithet. 

Another case which it is easy to trip up on is when plant species are named for people. Wilbert's Typhonium is Typhonium wilbertii (the genitive singular of the latinized masculine proper noun Wilbertius). If Wilbert had been a woman, Wilbertha, it would have been the genitive singular of the latinized feminine proper noun Wilbertia, hence Typhonium wilbertiae. But if the plant had been intended to be called, adjectivally, the Wilbertian Typhonium, it would have had the neuter ending Typhonium wilbertianum because Typhonium is neuter, regardless of whether W was Wilbert or Wilbertha!



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