10 responses to “Colchicum sp.”

  1. Guy Webb

    Would the use of colchicine theoretically have any effect in the attempt to produce a female Encephalartos woodii from male offshoots or clones?

  2. Michael F

    “Would the use of colchicine theoretically have any effect in the attempt to produce a female Encephalartos woodii from male offshoots or clones?”
    No, it doesn’t change the sex of a dioecious plant, it just doubles the chromosome number by interfering with the cell division processes.

  3. bev

    Welcome back, Daniel! I didn’t realize how much I missed your site in my ongoing horticultural/botanical self-education until I was deprived of it for a month. Hope you had a restful “vacation.”
    I am interested that these colchicums do not flop like mine do….perhaps it’s a function of the time between their emergence and the photo.

  4. Souren

    Hi Bev. Perhaps they didn’t flop because of the long dry summers, and (as you can see from the pine needles) the shelter of a Pine tree above.
    PS thanks for posting, Daniel – I’m not a very accomplished photographer – but this clump was so beautifully presented… it was easy!

  5. dale hinton

    Tulips naked leaves
    Flips over but has some weaves
    Hips have ladies sleaves?

  6. Guy Webb

    It is my understanding that spontaneous sex changes happen quite frequently in nature, although the cause is not well understood. I was just posing the query with regard to attempting to coax such a gender reversal might have an increased potential of success by doubling the chromosomes by administering the alkaloid colchicine. What we have at Lotusland is a vertual “Broke Back Mountain” situation with three lonely male Encephalartos woodii. cycads.

  7. bev

    Maybe this discussion really belongs in a UBC forum, but you raise an interesting question to me, as a physician but botanical ignoramus. “Polyploidy” (I’m using the term rather inaccurately here) does occur rarely in humans, for example an XXY individual is male but abnormal in many ways (Klinefelter’s syndrome). But do plants have sex chromosomes??!! I would assume plant gender is probably hormonally mediated based on environmental conditions?? (hence some species’ ability to switch genders?)

  8. judy newton

    I have heard they flop because they have been pollinated.

  9. Alex Jablanczy

    Well if you get a diploid you will have XXYY and a triploid XXXYYY. So just delete after polyploiding some X es or Y s and you get whichever sex you want.
    It seems all enhanced that is doubled etc petals flowers such as roses carnations as well as food crops wheat corn are polyploid, as can be surmised by either their multiplied petals or seeds.
    There is a fish in which if a school has only females one of them will just change sex and become a male, rather than the obverse in movies about strange attractions in humanoids.

  10. Mary Ann, in Toronto

    These are gorgeous flowers. They seem to emit their own light!

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