Hippeastrum "harvest"

Hans-Werner Hammen haweha@hotmail.com
Mon, 03 Oct 2011 03:53:55 PDT

(1)Bulbs, that you "force" are being exhausted by the "efforts", to produce considerable bio-mass (scapes and florets) during a short time. Everybody who forces bulbs of Knight Star Lilies, can verify this for themselves. Bulbs shrinking and becoming soft after the production of 2-3 scapes is particularly obvious in the regular (TETraploid) Hippeastrums with rather giant flowers, but not as conspicuous in DIPloids. During the process of seed pod formation, bulbs are already regaining in strength. If bulbs had been overly exhausted then the production of seeds is rather poor. Furthermore, bulbs in a weak condition / not husbanded well will not produce any or as many offsets that the cultivar is inclined to, genetically. Please note that some TETs will produce few if any offsets in spite of best husbandry. My "Red Pearl" does actually refuse during 4 seasons now lol). But, on the other hand "a bulb being consumed by its offsets" - I never observed such a phenomenon. This might 
 be different in other Amaryllids though. I observed Amaryllis belladonna in pots divide and divide, within the mother bulb = bulbils, to only becoming smaller. The same might apply for hymenocallis x festalis that is inclined to produces numerous bulblets=offsets outside the mother bulb. 
(2)I do not reject the idea that nutrients and sugars are being transported back into the bulb. I claim that this amount is negligible as compared to the akkumulation of substances within the bulb, that had been accomplished during the season.   

> Date: Sun, 2 Oct 2011 18:25:15 -0700
> From: loujost@yahoo.com
> To: pbs@lists.ibiblio.org
> Subject: Re: [pbs] Hippeastrunm "harvest"
> I wonder if Hans-Werner is correct in his assertion that seedpods, bulblets, etc do not weaken the mother plant. Building a bulblet must take a serious amount of energy and resources from the parent bulb. The bulblet grows underground and does not photosynthesize until it is bigger, so it has to be an energy sink initially. Maybe I misunderstand his claim. Similarly, making seeds puts an important energy and nutrient drain on most plants. 
> Also, it is not a ridiculous idea that nutrients and sugars are translocated into the bulb as a leaf dies back. This does happen. 
> His point about a leaf drawing water out of the bulb does make sense to me, however.
> Lou

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