AROID CULTURE

Philodendrons and Anthuriums may be what people think of when hearing the word aroid. But this is a very large family made up of arum, dieffenbachia, aglaonema, caladium, monstera and taro to name a few.

Most of the Aroids are lovers of partial sun. The leaves can vary considerably from type to type. Some are climbing and some are upright and can grow to a very large size. They prefer shade to climb up trees or to grow under trees to reach their full size. They also like moisture and humidity. The exception to this would be bog loving Aroids such as the Taro. They prefer to be wet around the roots and they can take full sun.

The flower on most Aroids is called a spadix. It can be white to red in color when the seeds are on it. It is not pretty by any means but serves a purpose to fertilize the seeds necessary for germination. Many plants in this family are heat producing. Their flowers can reach up to 113 degrees Fahrenheit. One reason for this unusually high temperature is to attract insects, usually beetles, to pollinate the plant. Some examples are Titan Arum and Voodoo Lily. Certain species, such as the Titan give off a very strong odor that resembles a decaying animal. This is to attract flies to pollinate the plant. Heat produced by the plant helps convey the scent further.

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