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It's Almost Spring and the Bulbs are First!

Lachenalia aloides var. quadricolor

Drop by March-May to enjoy the diversity of the many South Africa bulbs in bloom (and native ones too) here at the Conservatory!

 

Home of theTitans

Become a friend of the UCD Titan Arums on Facebook!

Photos are posted on our Facebook page, see below, so you can see some of the progress of the "flowers" various stages including senescense (determined and programmed cellular deterioration).

TammyGlows

In case you're wondering, drop in visits are free. See our maps page link above for directions and parking suggestions and the side bar for our public hours.

Federico and Amber

 

Tammy.eta.June13.2012

Stay tuned by liking our Titan Arums page on Facebook!

Want to see some pictures from previous years blooms of the Titan Arums here at UC Davis?
Go to Ernesto's Flickr collections of Titan Blooms and more!

Click here to see plant pictures from in and around the UC Davis Botanical Conservatory!

We had two Titan blooms in 2009 about a week apart in Mid May
SEE THE PHOTOS OF TED who bloomed on May 4, 2009

Almost a week after Ted bloomed, a new titan dubbed "Phyllis" bloomed for the very first time. Phyllis is the offspring (via vegetative propagule) of Tabatha, which died in 2004.
SEE THE PHOTOS OF PHYLLIS

Amorphophallus titanum

Ernesto with Ted the TitanAmorphophallus titanum, or the titan arum, was discovered by the Italian botanist Odoardo Beccari in 1878 on the island of Sumatra in Indonesia. A specimen was shipped to the Royal Botanical Gardens in England, where the plant was displayed and bloomed for the first time in cultivation in 1889. It may take 15 years for the titan arum to become large enough to bloom, and it is especially rare to see in cultivation. These floral giants have been coaxed into flower only about 100 times around the world, including 7 times here at the UC Davis Botanical Conservatory as of June 2011.

It's not a flower — it's a flower holder!

The frilly “petal” of the titan arum is a funnel-shaped leaf called a spathe. The spike that comes up from the center of the spathe is known as a spadix. This spadix produces several hundred tiny flowers, both male and female, way down near the narrow base where it joins the spathe. For the first several hours after the spathe opens up, the spadix puts out the strong scent of a dead animal that attracts flies and carrion beetles for pollination. This is the time when the female flowers are ready to receive pollen. The following day, the odor starts to fade as the female flowers become less receptive, and the male flowers begin to ripen with pollen. This difference in timing between the two types of flowers helps prevent self-pollination, and promotes cross pollination with other titan arums. Flowering of the plant generally occurs every other year, alternating with the production of a single gigantic leaf.

lifecycle of the titan arum

life stages of Amorphophallus titanum


History of the Titans at UC Davis

1995 — A donation of Amorphophallus titanum seed is received
2003 — “Ted the Titan” blooms for the first time
2004 — “Tabatha the Titan” blooms
2005 — “Ted the Titan” blooms for the second time
             (exhibited at the Conservatory of Flowers in San Francisco)
2007 — “Ted the Titan” blooms for the third time
2009 — “Ted the Titan” blooms for the fourth time!
2009 — “Phyllis” blooms for the first time! (Clone of Tabatha)
2011 — "Ted the Titan" blooms for the fifth time
2012 — "Tammy the Titan" blooms for the first time early June

 

Make a Donation!

CLICK HERE TO DONATE

to the Conservatory to improve our ability to keep this amazing diversity of plants growing for teaching, outreach and research purposes.

Visiting Hours

We're normally open from 9am-5pm weekdays and sometimes on weekends for special events and scheduled tours. Drop in visitors during the week are welcome. Our staffing is limited so call ahead 530-752-0569 to make sure we will be open during your visit or check our Tours link above to avoid those times or schedule a tour.

Mission

The mission of the UC Davis Botanical Conservatory is to inspire, facilitate, promote and engage our visitors with an understanding and appreciation of plants, their diversity and the pivotal role they serve in the environments where they are found.

 

The Conservatory and the collections within serve as an interactive and multi-sensory museum containing a large diversity of live specimens relied on for teaching or research purposes at the UC Davis campus and available for other academic institutions including K-12 in northern California.

History

The collection began in 1959 as a collection of coleus plants within the 3,600 sq foot greenhouse now known as the Botanical Conservatory. Today, the complex north of Storer Hall serves the University and public communities as an educational facility, research resource and genetic diversity preserve. The complex houses over 3,000 plant species in more than 150 families, including examples from most of the world's climatic regions.

 

The Genus Aloe

July 2009


Aloe has a long ethnobotanical history, and is now well known around world for having medicinal properties. In this paper we’ll look at aloe from both a botanical and horticultural viewpoint, and also take a brief look at the facts and the myths surrounding its medical uses.

DOWNLOAD: The Genus Aloe


Geranium maderense

August 2009


This beautiful and unusual geranium from the island of Madiera is well suited to gardens in the Sacramento-Davis area.

DOWNLOAD: Geranium maderense


link to Adobe Reader download page

Botanical Notes is in Adobe PDF format. You may need the free Adobe Reader software to view and print this publication.

Download page: Adobe Reader

 
Photograph of Geranium maderense

Geranium maderense

 
Photograph of titan visitors

Visitors learn about Amorphophallus

 
Photograph of visitor and Titan

Up close with the titan arum

 
Ernesto wiht Amorphophallus titanum corm

Ernesto with an Amorphophallus corm