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  Sauromatum x Pinellia hybrid.... and others...
From: James Waddick <jwaddick at kc.rr.com> on 2010.07.07 at 19:03:55(21162)
> I've posted images of the flower this spring, and the plant as it
>currently grows in comparison with both putative
>parents, Sauromatum venosum and Pinellia pedatisecta.

Dear Tony
This is a fascinating topic. As you probably know both
Sauromatum venosum (aka Typhonium) has a chromosome number of 2N= 26.
This is the same for Pinellia pedatisecta and some (but not all )
others in this genus ie 2N = 26

I realize that chromosome nos. of themselves has little
meaning, but suggests a likelier road to hybridization.

In your differentiation of these two species you did not
mention what seems the easiest and most consistent feature- petiole
pattern. In Sauromatum the petiole is more or less heavily brown
spotted and blotched, while Pinellia pedatisecta has no spots and is
uniformly green. I have a hard time keeping Sauromatum alive
outdoors in the ground, but somehow tubers pop up in pots as do
Pinellia. The petiole pattern is always a dead give away even on
small plants.

From: "Tony Avent" <tony at plantdelights.com> on 2010.07.07 at 20:28:23(21163)

The petiole pattern on Saurmatum opens up yet another can of worms...or
would the term maggots be more appropriate. The difference between the
petioles of Sauromatum venosum 'Indian Giant' and typical Sauromatum venosum
is the size and amount of spots. S. 'Indian Giant' has large spots, but the
are sparse. The typical S. venuosum, therefore, has much smaller spots and
more of them. We planted the two parents side by side and gathered op seed,
of which we have now flowered nearly 1000 plants. The petioles patterns are
a total mix, with even showing no spots. If the S. 'Indian Giant' was a
tetraploid, the crosses back to the typical form should be probably sterile
triploids, which does not seem to be the case.

On our purported hybrid, the petiole spots are closer to typical S. venosum,
which is what I would anticipate with a cross of Pinellia (no spots) and
Sauromatum (spots). I would consider the multiple shoots from the same corm
and the lack of a fully developed flower as the most compelling evidence of
intergeneric hybridization. You should be able to page back and forth to
see the flower image on the gallery, but if not, go to

Tony Avent

From: Brian Williams <pugturd at windstream.net> on 2010.07.08 at 03:26:19(21164)
Tony your hybrid is very interesting. It is always good to see something
that many consider impossible possible. It just makes me wonder what all
could be if just tried in this odd family of plants.
From: "plantguy at zoominternet.net" <plantguy at zoominternet.net> on 2010.07.08 at 13:11:24(21166)
Hi Tony and all,

I guess the pics of the leaves, petioles and tuber are not at all
convincing to me, but I could be the only one. I have at least a
half-dozen so-called 'Indian Giant' growing in my yard and pots (originally
from you) with a second petiole from the same growth point (the original
petiole is splitting at the base as you see in Dracontium) already and we
are very early in the growing season here in Pittsburgh. Given that this
is "normal" (for me anyway) then couldn't you have a simple mutation that
could take you from 2-3 petioles to 4-5 (no mutation is simple to
understand in terms of genotype/phenotype of course)? The flower pics make
it look very ill-formed so hard to tell for me, but you have seen it
up-close so have a better idea. I'm guessing you already preserved the
flower so that it could be examined by someone like Wilbert? Have you sent
plant material to someone for genetic testing, which is likely the only way
to get a solid answer to your question? Was the flower sterile or could
you back-cross? It is an interesting question you pose and I wish you all
the luck in figuring it out with absolute certainty.


From: "Tony Avent" <tony at plantdelights.com> on 2010.07.14 at 21:12:39(21188)

This was the first year for the purported hybrid to flower, so I sacrificed
the flower for photography. The flower was deformed this year, which if it
occurs this way next year, would lend credence to hybrid origin. I am
waiting for anyone who has the ability to do perform DNA testing to contact
me for a sample.

While I agree that some sauromatum can produce a second petiole for a short
time, this plant consistently holds the same four petioles all season. If
it is indeed a mutant sauromatum, it would be unlikely (not impossible) to
have so many atypical characteristics (different sheen on the leaf back,
extra petioles all season, a wider leaf rachis, and a deformed spadix).

Thanks for the thoughts.

Tony Avent

From: "Tony Avent" <tony at plantdelights.com> on 2010.07.14 at 21:14:34(21189)

Knowing your propensity for out-of-the-box breeding, I can only imagine what
crosses you might be inclined to make this season...good luck!

Tony Avent

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