Was pollination - Dracunculus

James Waddick jwaddick@kc.rr.com
Mon, 31 May 2004 15:40:14 PDT
Dear All;
	Judy's mention of pollination coincides with the 4 th (of 6) 
flowers on Dracunculus vulgaris. This is a tuberous aroid of the 
	For years I was frustrated growing this thing until some kind 
person sent me larger tubers. I realize now that they take years from 
seed. Much longer than I anticipated. May be might colder climate and 
they grow slower.
	The huge maroon-red spathe opens on the first day and 
attracts more flies than you thought were in the neighborhood. The 
smell of 'something dead' can be overpowering. Hope for an 'up' wind. 
But your nose tells you when a new flower has opened.

	I just recently heard of a couple of intrepid plant hunters 
who went to the island of Crete while this stinker was in full bloom. 
There they collected tubers of a pure white-flowered form and other 
with various white/maroon marbling in the spathe. There are tales of 
yellow flowers also.
	The plant typically has white 'chevron' marks on the 
multi-part foliage and they found some with highly marked 50/50 
green/white foliage too.

	Really well grown healthy specimens there approach 7 ft in bloom. Wow.

	I can only hope that as they settle in, more variants will 
get into the hands of good propagators. I didn't learn if the white 
flowers smelled any better- or worse.

	Always something new out there.		Best	Jim W.

Dr. James W. Waddick
8871 NW Brostrom Rd.
Kansas City Missouri 64152-2711
Ph.    816-746-1949
E-fax  419-781-8594

Zone 5 Record low -23F
	Summer 100F +

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