Hand Pollination of Amorphophallus paeoniifolius

by Scott Hyndman

Tuffy in the shade of an Amorphophallus paeoniifolius
For over ten years I have been growing an Amorphophallus paeoniifolius that originally belonged to Bob deLaney of Apopka, Florida. This particular clone can grow to a height of over two meters with a canopy spread of over three meters. The petiole base at the surface of the soil can reach 30 centimeters in diameter. During the 2000 growing season, the tuber grew to a weight of 29 kilograms.

Old A. paeoniifolius such as this specimen, typically grow in a cycle of vegetation in the first season followed by winter dormancy as a large depressed-globose tuber. In the following growing season, the tuber produces the inflorescence, which quickly withers unless pollinated. After the passing of the inflorescence, the tuber remains dormant until the next growing season when a leaf sprouts to produce a new tuber.

In the image above, the plant is shown growing during the 1998 season in a 570 liters pot in my backyard under the partial shade of a live oak.

To learn more about how to grow Amorphophallus go here. A culture sheet for Amorphophallus titanum from the Botanical Garden Bonn is available here. To see how A. paeoniifolius is grown in India as a food crop go here.

A. paeoniifolius pollination home page Tuffy with the dormant tuber.
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This page was created by Scott Hyndman for the I.A.S. on January 6, 2001.