Synandrospadix is a monotypic genus in the family Araceae. Its only species, Synandrospadix vermitoxicus, is distributed in central South America (Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay and Peru). It has a round depressed tuber, rather deep in the soil, from which leaves and inflorescences arise during the summer. The tuber usually doesn't offset, but a few rare clones are able to split. Leaves are glaucous, cordate-hastate, acuminate, undulate. Petiole about 20-30 cm (above the soil). Inflorescence held by a 10-15 cm (above the soil) stalk. Female flowers can be pollinated by an older inflorescence releasing pollen, even if of the same clone. The spathe is greenish-white striped with darker green outside and dark pink striped with reddish-black inside. It is acuminate, slightly curved towards the soil and contains a spadix that is partially fused to it at the base. In each inflorescence male flowers are much more numerous than female ones, and the anthers are covered with a blackish pollen. It is dormant in winter and during this period it must be kept rather dry. During the summer it needs abundant but not frequent watering. Some filtered shade in summer is necessary to prevent sun-burning. A well drained (as for succulent plants) soil gives optimum results. Seeds ripen in autumn, when all the aerial part of the plant collapses, and can be stored overwinter to be sown in mid-late spring, but can also be sown immediately and kept dryish all over the winter. This species must be overwintered dry at some 6 °C to 10 °C of minimum temperature.

The first five photos by Gianluca Corazza. The last photo from Bert Zaalberg.

Synandrospadix vermitoxicus, Gianluca CorazzaSynandrospadix vermitoxicus, Gianluca CorazzaSynandrospadix vermitoxicus, Gianluca CorazzaSynandrospadix vermitoxicus, successful hand pollination with an older inflorescence of the same plant, Gianluca CorazzaSynandrospadix vermitoxicus, a large tuber aged 24, Gianluca CorazzaSynandrospadix vermitoxicus, Bert Zaalberg

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