Friday, October 2, 2009

Random plant event: Anthurium 'Pandola' seeds sprouting (!)

I know: you're thinking what? Already? The posts lag behind reality by a week or so, a lot of the time, either because I try to get them written well in advance so I'm not scrambling at the last minute for a post, or because the last stuff I'm interested in posting is already a week old by the time I get to it, or both. So I'm not sure what day it actually was that I planted the Anthurium 'Pandola' seeds from Wednesday's post, but it was more than just two days ago. Maybe more like nine or ten?

I swear, I didn't expect anything to come of this. And yet, take a look:

Sprouting! Already! This is kind of especially incredible because everything I've seen about growing Anthuriums from seed makes the process sound difficult. I forget all the details, but something about there being a low fertility rate, and seeds don't store well, or really at all, so you have to use them right away, and so on and so forth.

I'm going to try to refrain from counting any chickens just yet, because there's an awfully long ways to go before there are any actual new plants. But I'm still hopeful that there will be at least one plant that lives long enough to flower, because I'm really curious about what color that might be. The mother, 'Pandola,' is a light pink, but the father could be anybody. (Anthuriums, as we know from their profile, are kind of slutty.) So pretty much any color except light pink will be a surprise.

Also, just as a point of interest, the sort of clear jelly-like blob around the seedling in the picture is a real thing, not an artifact of the photography or a stray water droplet or something. They all have it. (You can see it especially in the last picture of Wednesday's post, as sort of a halo around the seeds.) I don't know exactly what it is, but it apparently absorbs water, which I guess would be a useful thing for a short-lived seed of a semi-epiphyte to do.

Pretty much everything about this event is weird and unprecedented for me. Nice to know that I can still be surprised.


sheila said...

Sending you a cigar on the birth of your new babies. Congrats! That is way cool. I liked your comment about still being able to be surprised.

Zeï said...

This is awesome! I wonder what the blob is too. It's a very educational experiment.

lynn'sgarden said...

Very cool, indeed! You got me looking for seed setting anthuriums when I stopped at Lowes! The blooms I found were too new but I'm keeping my eyes out! See, educational! Good luck with these babies ;)

Lance said...

Congratulations, very cool to see sprouts, especially this early.

I've seen the blob/envelope on many seeds. I'm not sure what it's called or what it is other than to help keep the seeds moist while sprouting. I'm sure there is a much more technical explanation.

Dee said...

Very cool- can't wait to see how they do!

Diane said...

Your goo looks a lot like the goo on my Chia seeds. I did some digging and found that it's mucilage (a glycoprotein) and is typical of aroids (and many other families, inc. Malvaceae, which I study). Its purpose is unclear but it may play a role in water absorption or seed dispersal or it may be a food source. The book "Flowers for Trade, Vol. 10" by Sheela (searchable online) says to take that mucilage off germinating Anthurium seeds, but I doubt it matters, and I don't know how you would do that anyway!