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  Gel?
From: Mike Bordelon <BORDELON.MIKE at NMNH.SI.EDU> on 1998.02.27 at 13:29:29(1927)
Hi everybody

I was cleaning a tuber of Amorphophallus gigas for the
purpose of repotting into a larger pot. Cleaning the soil
away I thought I felt a slug, but it turned out to be some kind
of gel in the cracks of the tuber. Is this produced by the tuber
to keep it from drying too much during dormancy or do I
have something to worry about. If it is natural, should I have
kept it there?

Mike Bordelon

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From: Wilbert Hetterscheid <hetter at vkc.nl> on 1998.03.05 at 07:38:47(1939)
> Hi everybody
>
Hi Mike,

> I was cleaning a tuber of Amorphophallus gigas for the
> purpose of repotting into a larger pot. Cleaning the soil
> away I thought I felt a slug, but it turned out to be some kind
> of gel in the cracks of the tuber. Is this produced by the tuber
> to keep it from drying too much during dormancy or do I
> have something to worry about. If it is natural, should I have
> kept it there?
>
This is a not rare phenomenon in phalloids and e.g. also in Sauromatum!
I have no clue as to what causes it but it must be an extrusion of the
glucomannans in the tuber that are known to form gels with water at room
temperature. I also remove it and that doesn't seem to affect the tuber.

> Mike Bordelon
> Botany Greenhouse
> Smithsonian Institution
>
Cheers,
Wilbert

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