5 responses to “Tithonia tubiformis”

  1. Alexander Jablanczy

    That’s the display technique, both a general panoramic view of the whole plant or community as well as a structure defining close up almost a macroscopic view.
    ……………………..Which reminds me……
    Here’s a challenge as I am neither a photographer especially not with dig. cam. nor comp. guru, ie dont know how to send one even if I could use the camera.
    My homonymous father wrote a research paper about the distinguishing features of Eastern Red White and Black Spruce seedlings or cotyledons, so it has to be somebody with a magnification camera in Eastern Canada the Maritimes Quebec or Ontario. These are either nothing for White or else colourless hairs, a rusty smudge on the leaf surface or on the hairs for Red, and black nodule tipped hairs for Black Spruce seedlings respectively.
    These are apparently not visible with the naked eye with the plant in hand, but are easily perceived even with a simple magnifying glass. Hence the need for a macroscope or a macroscopic attachment.
    I dont know about Western spruces.

  2. Douglas Justice

    As usual, David Tarrant uses his fine photographer’s eye to show us an under-documented plant worthy of our consideration (and Daniel invites us to dig deeper with excellent web resources).

    David frequently sees in many plants what others do not see. The Tithonia on the fence-line is a weed, just another yellow composite, but his artistic (and artful) composition goes beyond the mere recording of botanical characteristics and habitat. I’m sure I’m not the only person who considered whether there was somewhere in my own garden I could grow this? or whether anyone’s used it in breeding work? or what other plants grow in this are that might also be worth looking at? (We know some of them thanks to David’s previous postings.) Let’s hope he keeps the pictures coming.

    An aside: The botanical garden community is all about collaboration. I’m constantly amazed by the generosity of people–the talented contributers to Botany Photo of the Day and to the Botanical Garden Forums, for example. But I’m especially thankful to the legions of volunteers, mostly unseen by outsiders, that make botanical gardens vibrant and viable. When he was working at UBC, David Tarrant spent much of his time encouraging and mentoring our staff and volunteer Friends of the Garden, as well as reaching out to the widest range of people (from the homeless to garden cognoscenti), teaching and interpreting plants and generally motivating people with his incredible passion for horticulture. Thanks, David. I’m still inspired.

  3. Meg Bernstein

    I enjoyed the article–it wasn’t too difficult to read as you said. Thanks for posting it.

  4. Mike Bush

    While humans (the fruit dispersal vector in question) arrived in middle America roughly 15,000 years ago, it is hard to believe that the ‘stick-tights’ would have found humans to be a selective advantage. I recall the darned things clinging to the blue jeans and socks of my youth – yet NOT to my legs when I wore shorts – while my bare legs would be clear, the darn things would just COVER my socks and shoestrings.
    Socks would have arrived with the Spanish in the 16th century, alhtough were not likely widely represented among the people of northern Mexico. Beginning in the late 1930’s with the process of circular weaving, socks became much cheaper and more widely available. Still, not much time to work ‘evolutionarily’.
    Perhaps the Tithonia shows up on cultivated ground due to visits from ‘stick tight’ covered raccoons coming for a helping of squash or tomatoes?
    Interesting theory. I’d be interested to know if a recent ‘test’ of native peoples walking among Tithonia in shorts/sandles or clothing traditional 500 years ago, would pick up many stick tights?
    Keep posting! Keep us thinking!

  5. Carlos Vergara

    Most people probably don’t know that this weed’s nectar is the source of one of the finest honeys in Earth: the Mexican butter honey, very fine grain, exqusite flavor and aroma!

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