Saturday, July 13, 2013

Amorphophallus elatus

This is a smallish species is found in dry lowland slopes of Northern Peninsula Malaysia and Peninsula Thailand. It is very variable in vegetative appearance especially in the pattern of the petiole which may be plain green to intricate streaks of chestnut, black and cream .....

Henry Nicholas Ridley, the botanist credited with introducing rubber to this part of the world, once thought that this species was the same as A. variabilis from Indonesia. Its distinguishing feature - the elongated tuber, was thought to be the result of being confined between limestone cracks and crevices. As you can see from the habitat photo below, the plant is not necessary restricted to the limestone cliff but the tubers are characteristically long nonetheless. As they age, the tubers will extend deeper and deeper into ground and they are really hard to dig up without being broken in pieces. 

The unimpressive looking inflorescence is supposed to have a strong cheesy smell of isocaproic acid but yet again, I have failed to detect any.
It is quite easy to grow but need a deep container for its long tuber to lengthen.

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