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  Leaf fertilization - A.titanum 'ghost'
From: Baumfarn Webmaster webmaster at baumfarn.at> on 2005.06.08 at 11:56:24(12982)
A friend of me and I growed some A.titanum from seeds.

Both of us have one pale (he) and one nearly pale (I) plant.
Both plants are about to unfolding dear leafes now.
But due to the (nearly) completely missing of any green pigmentation
probably the photosynthesis wouldn't take effect. (I hope this is still
english? ;-) )

From: Baumfarn Webmaster webmaster at baumfarn.at> on 2005.06.11 at 11:30:20(12988)
Here are some pics of my white beauty:
Scroll to the right, there are 3 pics.

From: "Tropicals" Tropicals at SolutionsAnalysis.net> on 2005.06.11 at 20:41:55(12990)
Outstanding specimen. Thank you for sharing. We offer no direct experience
growing an albo form A. titanum but certainly hope you keep us posted on its
height, size container and specific medium and environmental conditions
under which is it growing. Kudo's to you; good growing!

Christian and Bill
AlterNative Solutions

From: "David S." maui4me at charter.net> on 2005.06.12 at 06:08:06(12991)
I see no evidence of chlorophyll. I don't know how it could survive very
long without it unless grafted like some cacti are, but then what could you
graft it on to?

David S.

From: "W. George Schmid" hostahill at bellsouth.net> on 2005.06.12 at 17:17:57(12993)
Hi, The phenomenon of white plant tissue also occurs in other genera. In my
experience with hostas, completely white plants (as your A. titanum) may
survive one season but the lack of chlorophyll results in the hosta rhizome
(or the A. tuber) not being able to store sufficient sugars for the next
year's growth. As a consequence, the plants will decline and no longer be
viable after a season or two or three. Usually, some hostas fight this
condition and become viridescent, i.e., the leaves turn partially or all the
way green later in the season (the time frame when sugars are stored in
hostas) to make up for this lack of chlorophyll. In other cases the white
leaves collapse and rot away and are replaced with green leaves. Some of
these plants recover and live on by making the white-phase a temporary
condition. I have a variegated Acer negundo that routinely sends out
branches with all-white leaves. None of these branches has survived more
than three seasons, unless they become viridescent, which happens
occasionally. I have a large collection or amorphs and arisaemas, but have
not experienced white forms so cannot comment on these aroids in particular.
I would guess that large tubers with a large stored-up food supply may be
able to survive for a time. Judging by my experience with other genera, the
white form is either a lethal condition or will not survive in the long run.
It would be interesting to see if this plant has enough food reserves to
make an inflorescence. HTH, George

W. George Schmid

From: Baumfarn Webmaster webmaster at baumfarn.at> on 2005.06.12 at 17:50:49(12994)
Growed from seeds, vendor: www.samenladen.de, source:
www.sumatraflora.com (only 2 turns out to be white from about 40 seeds)
Height: 25 cm (surface earth to first branching)
Container: 18 cm diameter
Maximum leaf-to-leaf-tips: 16 cm diameter
Medium: normal earth, with pretty much of perlit, bims sand, seramis
(what's the name in english??) and some kind of long lasting fertilizer
From: Baumfarn Webmaster webmaster at baumfarn.at> on 2005.06.12 at 21:45:38(12996)
thanks for your input.
>>It would be interesting to see if this plant has enough food reserves
From: Steve Marak samarak at gizmoworks.com> on 2005.06.12 at 21:50:53(12997)
My limited experience is also with other genera, and is exactly as George
described - 1 or perhaps 2 seasons of decline and then disappearance. My very
unscientific impression is that this happens more often with selfings, which
would be completely unsurprising to me but is certainly not required. A batch
of hemerocallis seeds sent to me long ago by Phil Mueller germinated almost 40%
"albinos", the highest percentage I've ever seen. I had one variegated
hemerocallis which developed the habit of putting up some completely white
fans and some which displayed the "normal" variegation. I hoped this would
enable it to grow very slowly and still look spectacular, and it did survive
for 5 or 6 years, but it hasn't appeared this year and I fear the worst.

The cactus & succulent people graft non-chlorophyllous plants, as David
suggested, and now have quite a stable of them (which people seem to love or
hate). In your case, as the leaf is transient, you'd actually probably want to
graft a leaf with chlorophyll onto the stem to provide the tuber with food.
Not only do I have no idea how you'd do this with just a leaf - is it even
possible? - it would obviously not preserve the unusual appearance, and what
leaf would you use?

I have a desultory interest in this, enough to make me search the web
occasionally and watch the mailing lists in case someone comes up with an easy
way to keep these plants alive, but not enough to make me get out the big guns
and try things myself. They seem to fascinate a lot of us, and there's been
discussion on several lists about possible approaches - I seem to recall a
particularly long-running discussion on the clivia list, and you might search
those archives to see if anyone came up with an answer.

Good luck, and please let us know if you are able to keep it going.


From: Baumfarn Webmaster webmaster at baumfarn.at> on 2005.06.12 at 22:03:05(12998)
Selflings?? Sorry; I'm just a native german speaker. And I know only
halflings and seedlings, but selflings?
Probably you mean self propagated plants? But as far as I know that is
impossible for Amorphophallus, since the female flowers ripe before the
From: Ken Mosher ken at spatulacity.com> on 2005.06.12 at 23:53:12(12999)
Since that titanum is a seedling I wouldn't expect it even to form a tuber.
Where would it get the energy to grow one? Without chlorophyll how can it
survive at all?

From: "W. George Schmid" hostahill at bellsouth.net> on 2005.06.13 at 17:02:59(13008)
Somehow, Ken, this tree gets rid of all white branches in short order. The
first season it usually loses the white leaves somewhat prematurely and does
not replace them. The branch may sprout white leaves again the next season,
but usually by the third season it is dry and dead. This tree is mature and
about 20 ft tall and develops the all-white-leaved branches closest to the
ground only. The whole thing is strange, as is comes and goes: Some years it
has the white-leaved branches, others it does not. Seems like the tree
"knows" which branches contribute to its survival and which do not. I am no
tree expert (my chosen fields are limited areas of botany and taxonomy), but
perhaps someone schooled in tree physiology can explain what is happening.

From: Baumfarn Webmaster webmaster at baumfarn.at> on 2005.06.13 at 21:49:12(13011)
Update: two of the five leaflets are arched and pointing downward. But the leaflets don't feel limp in any case. Stiff and elastic like they should.
PS: I know this is far away from a correct botanic discription ;-)


From: Baumfarn Webmaster webmaster at baumfarn.at> on 2005.07.07 at 23:06:06(13150)
Three of the leaf tips are getting brown.
Could this happend to a normal (green) A.titanum too?
Could it be something like too much water, too much/less sunlight?
Something other?
Or is this the beginning of the end due to the lack of chlorphyl?


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