Pollination tricks

Jim McClements, Dover, DE z6 JimMcClem at AOL.COM
Wed Apr 28 03:55:31 CEST 1999

In a message dated 4/27/99 8:25:26 PM, nargsbs at efn.org writes:

<<I have heard about a technique in which water was poured through the
male plant and caught and then poured through the female. I have tried
this with A. sikokianum, but still only got about five nice plump seeds.
Has anyone else had success with this or have any other pollination
tricks to offer now that the season is upon us.

Ernie et al

What you describe is sort of what Don Jacobs does, and I've used it with some
success. You need to put water into the spathe of the male plant, trying to
keep it from running out of the bottom. Compression with a finger plus
tilting the spathe backward helps to accomplish this. Then, aspirate the
water back into a syringe or dropper (a curved extension or narrow plastic
tube is needed). If pollen is being shed, the water will sometimes take on a
slightly yellow tinge. This is then put in the spathe of the female plant,
again trying to prevent it from running through immediately. Repeat once or
twice, and do daily for several days.

I must admit that I only go to this trouble if I REALLY want seed from
something special. Most of the time Mother Nature seems to do the job, aided,
of course, by gnats and perhaps other winged creatures.

Jim McClements

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