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tstuart at tstuart at
Tue Jul 10 18:20:13 CEST 2001

hardy  Aroids)" <ARISAEMA-L at NIC.SURFNET.NL>
From: Tom Stuart <tstuart at WESTNET.COM>
Subject: Weed
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Back in '97 on a Christmas Eve when hearts are warm and potentially
incendiary letters are greeted with toleration, Ellen Hornig posted "In D=efense
of Arisaema triphyllum."

Actually, the archives have a number of good pieces. Mike Slater's
observations were a pleasure,

Ray Stillwell, by the evidence not entirely a triphyllum enthusiast,
nonetheless performed noble duty with a key to the subspecies,
and a followup,

A search for Arisaema triphyllum on the web produced little. The most
comprehensive page (photos of most forms, habitat and growth habit) was a=t
an Ontario orchid culture site/business called Canadian Tissue Culture La=bs,

Ray, recruits!

Here in A-t Country it's fair to say most gardeners consider it a weed. M=any
who do tolerate it, do so more for its oddness rather than any overwhelmi=ng
attachment. Well, it does grow "all over the place" here, too, certainly =one
qualifier for a weed, but I would like to report on a decline. Failure to=thrive
grants a certain cachet to weeds, allowing an exit from opprobrium.

My property had many A. triphyllum. From 1986 when I acquired it until la=st
year, a guess of a few hundred seems reasonable. Not every one would
return every year (I certainly didn't track them in detail) but the numbe=rs were
more or less consistent. Fruiting plants seemed surprisingly few, until I
learned females are in the minority.

Usually I collected Jack-in-the-Pulpit about May 1, just after emergence,=for
local plant sales. Last year I saw few, and collected none. A little late=r in
June a search found only five or six plants, none fruiting. What had chan=ged?

The summer of 1999 saw almost two months without rain. A hypothesis:
summer moisture is needed to set next year's buds.

The summer of 2000 provided record rain in July and August. What

This spring I count at least 250 plants, ranging from seedlings to many
juveniles and males and four fruiting females. As for the seedlings, it i=s
interesting there were no seeds last year. Were these delayed germination=s
or 2000-dormant, 1999-germinators, weakened to seedling stature?

This year has seen plenty of rain to date. Barring August drought, the 20=02
prediction is for an abundant crop of Arisaema triphyllum.

Tom Stuart, Croton Falls, New York
Once a weed, always a weed?

Tom Stuart, PO Box 517, Croton Falls, NY 10519, tstuart at

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