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 Cyrtosperma merkusii 
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Joined: Sun Feb 07, 2016 2:10 pm
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Location: Plymouth UK
Post Cyrtosperma merkusii
I managed to source a corm of this spectacular and difficult to find aroid from the Philippines.
It arrived two weeks ago, and in true tropical style has begun to explode with growth already.
It's potted in a 50:50 mix of moss peat and sand, with bottom of the pot being filled with gravel.
It's set in a heated water bath with an LED bulb over it to give it a boost during the cold months.

This plant needs a lot of warmth, I think it's more adaptable in terms of light requirements.
Will be interesting to see how it does in a north-facing bay window.

The main growth point:
Image

Suckers coming up, this plant suckers freely (depending on the cultivar):
Image

The mother plant, nowhere near full grown:
Image

Does anyone have any experience with growing this species?

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Thu Feb 01, 2018 10:26 pm
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Joined: Tue May 05, 2009 3:55 pm
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Location: North Thames delta UK
Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Wow - not heard of anyone outside of a botanical institute getting hold of this. Good luck, I suspect you are on your own!

There was a period when I looked for it to try as summer in pond/winter in greenhouse plant but I came to the conclusion that a/ I wasn't going to find it and b/ my greenhouse wasn't warm enough.

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Sat Feb 03, 2018 8:25 am
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Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 10:03 pm
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Location: Inland Cornwall UK
Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
For a picture that gives it a scale, try here.

At least I think Cyrtosperma merkusii is the same as Cyrtosperma chamissonis.

Now I can see why you are keen to grow it!

Chad.


Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:47 am
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Paul Spracklin wrote:
Wow - not heard of anyone outside of a botanical institute getting hold of this. Good luck, I suspect you are on your own!

There was a period when I looked for it to try as summer in pond/winter in greenhouse plant but I came to the conclusion that a/ I wasn't going to find it and b/ my greenhouse wasn't warm enough.


Thanks! It took such a long time to find a source. Down the line, if it does well I can send you a sucker to try if you wanted.
Yeah, it's as tropical as it gets, from what I've read it needs at least temperatures in the mid twenties to do well.
However, I think it can cope with lower provided the corm and roots are kept warm, so it could probably do well outside over summer in a heated barrel.

Chad wrote:
For a picture that gives it a scale, try here.

At least I think Cyrtosperma merkusii is the same as Cyrtosperma chamissonis.

Now I can see why you are keen to grow it!

Chad.


Yep, I think C merkusii has a lot of synonyms.
I love the growth habit. Not expecting huge height indoors but some good-sized leaves on long petioles would be nice!

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Sat Feb 03, 2018 10:58 am
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
James that is very kind of you! I won't say no, if you get that far. Just read up about it and the corms can get to over 60kgs!

Another one I liked the look of was Typhonodorum lindleyanum. I recall seeing about a dozen stems lying on their sides at Kew when they had weeded it out, destined for the compost heap no doubt.

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Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:53 am
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Paul Spracklin wrote:
James that is very kind of you! I won't say no, if you get that far. Just read up about it and the corms can get to over 60kgs!

Another one I liked the look of was Typhonodorum lindleyanum. I recall seeing about a dozen stems lying on their sides at Kew when they had weeded it out, destined for the compost heap no doubt.


Would be no trouble at all!

i've grown T. lindleyanum before, it did so well until winter.; cooler air, aphids, spider mites and fungus kept knocking it back.
Eventually, the heater failed and it just rotted at the base and keeled over. Would love to grow it again, once i move out of this cold Victorian house!

Image

Image

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Sat Feb 03, 2018 12:54 pm
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Interesting. Do you recall where you sourced it from?

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Sat Feb 03, 2018 1:01 pm
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
I bought mine from http://www.rareplants.es/, looks like they're out of stock though.
However, https://www.canarius.com do sell seedlings, just a bit expensive!

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Sat Feb 03, 2018 6:00 pm
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Thank you. As you say, not cheap!

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Sat Feb 03, 2018 7:55 pm
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
That does have the hothouse requirement look to it. I'm surprised that easier to find aroids like Colocasia gigantea aren't tried more in Europe.


Sun Feb 04, 2018 12:02 am
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Stan wrote:
That does have the hothouse requirement look to it. I'm surprised that easier to find aroids like Colocasia gigantea aren't tried more in Europe.

Colocasia gigantea is a stunning plant, although I think a bit slow outdoors in the UK due to lack of summer heat. I've never had much luck with it indoors or out personally. Interesting plant, there is some strong evidence to suggest it might be a naturally occuring hybrid between C. esculenta and Alocasia macrorrhizos/A. odora.

As for Cyrtosperma merkusii, fingers crossed I can get good growth out of it. If anything like Typhonodorum, the secret will be keeping it in warm water.

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Mon Feb 05, 2018 1:23 pm
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Well done on getting hold of Cryptosperma merkusii! This is one that I've been half keeping an eye out for too. You've done well to find it! Best of luck with its cultivation. Would be nice if you could update this thread periodically with your experiences as there is not much to go on regarding cultivation outside the tropics.

Typhonodorum lindleyanum has been fairly well tried in the UK over the years. I have heard that as long as the water that it stands in is heated, it can take short term dips in temperature down to around 5 or 6 degrees. If the water is not heated, then it is apparently distinctly unhappy! Some day I'd like to try this outside in a pond with an aquarium heater. Not sure how I'd keep it overwinter though...

JP4294 wrote:
Colocasia gigantea is a stunning plant, although I think a bit slow outdoors in the UK due to lack of summer heat. I've never had much luck with it indoors or out personally. Interesting plant, there is some strong evidence to suggest it might be a naturally occuring hybrid between C. esculenta and Alocasia macrorrhizos/A. odora.


Colocasia gigantea has recently been placed in it's own genus and has been renamed Leucocasia gigantea.

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Tue Feb 06, 2018 3:35 pm
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Post Re: Cyrtosperma merkusii
Oh interesting, I thought Leucocasia gigantea was its old name, I had no idea they'd reassigned it! I wonder why it was placed in Colocasia in the first place.

As for the Cyrtosperma, will keep this thread updated. Growth has slowed down as the house has cooled with the recent cold snap (big single-glazed windows, tall ceilings and a weedy heating system don't help much), and the heat mats only do so much. It's still going slowly though; soil temperatures have stayed between 25-30.

Resisting temptation to have a look under the soil because I keep getting paranoid that the corm is rotting. It came with no roots on it whatsoever, and the corm had some damage. I gave it a few baths of peroxide before I planted it which certainly helped to disinfect it and remove dead tissue. I also kept it in water for a week or two to keep an eye on it and the corm seemed to be doing alright. I'm sure it's fine, must leave it alone. Anyway, I'm hoping if it can manage to muster some growth now with the short days and cooler temps, then the rest of the year should hopefully bring some nice developments!

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Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:23 am
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