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Amorphophallus in the wild and in cultivation.



The genus Amorphophallus is discussed i.e. natural history, diversity of species and cultivation requirements of this legendary genus of aroids.
The spectacular inorescence of
Amorphophallus titanum
Sp e c i e s o f t h e g e n u s
Amorphophallus are among the
most striking and enigmatic of
all plants. Famed for including some
of the largest ower structures of all
the world’s ora, many members of
this beautiful and diverse genus
remain poorly understood and
seldom cultivated, despite their
spectacular blooms.
The genus was named after the
Greek for ‘misshapen (or deformed)
penis’, in reference to the shape of
the prominent, saggy, spire-like
spadix of the rst described species.
The 200 or so known species of
this tropical and subtropical
herbaceous genus of the Araceae are
distributed mainly in lowland areas
across West Africa, southern Asia
(south of the Himalayas, to China
and the Philippines), to the Pacic
islands. No Amorphophallus are
native to the Americas, although
Dracontium, which are similar but
smaller in size and not closely
related, are endemic there.
Most Amorphophallus species can be
found growing in semi-shady areas in
disturbed ground, such as secondary
forests, but also in grassy savannas.
Many species are found in relatively
localized geographic areas, and
several dozen species remain poorly
understood. These have been
observed only on one or a few
occasions in the wild, and have never
been introduced into cultivation.
All species of Amorphophallus
share the same basic life history.
They are perennial plants that in
their rst year of growth produce
a swollen, underground tuber that
may be globose (as in A. konjac) or
elongated (as in A. macrorhizus and
A. longituberosus), or a horizontal
rootstock formed from a cluster of
consecutive tubers (A. coaetaneus),
or a true horizontal rootstock
(A. rhizomatosus). The different
species vary in the number of years
that they require to mature, but in
most cases, growth is seasonal and
they undergo cyclical periods of
activity and dormancy throughout
the year. The age that individual
plants can reach in the wild is not
known, but likely to be many
decades, or in some cases, possibly
even centuries.
The tubers of Amorphophallus vary in
size, but in the larger species (such as
A. titanum), they are the largest in
the plant kingdom (Gandawijaja et al.
1983) and may weigh as much as
117kg, with a diameter of 1m or more.
The tuber, as a storage organ, is
fundamental to the geophyte life
cycle of Amorphophallus, particularly
in the larger species which may
produce no leaves during years when
an inorescence is produced. In
these cases, the colossal oral
structure develops entirely from the
supply of starch and nutrients stored
in the tuber from the previous
season. Plants tend to ower every
one to two years, rarely longer apart
as in A. titanum.
The foliage of Amorphophallus is
often overlooked in favour of its
exuberant owers. Each plant usually
produces a single leaf during a
Photographs by Stewart McPherson or Jeremy Holden, unless otherwise stated
in the wild and
in cultivation
St e w a r t
McPh e r S o n
and wi l b e r t
he t t e r S c h e i d
discuss the natural
history, diversity
of species and
requirements of
a legendary genus
of aroids
 
growing season which emerges from
the top of the subterranean tuber.
It consists of a trunk-like petiole,
that is often variably mottled, which
branches and supports an expansive,
horizontally-held leaf which is
divided into numerous leaets.
In the largest Amorphophallus species
the leaf may resemble a sapling tree,
being up to 6m or more in height
and 7m across. The tree sapling
effect is strengthened by the
mottling which consists of raised
patches, suggesting lichen on a
woody trunk. The foliage is usually
short-lived and collapses within nine
months of developing, often less.
Not all Amorphophallus species
produce large inorescences.
Indeed, most produce inorescences
that are shorter than 1m, and some
are a mere 4cm high. As is typical of
the Araceae, Amorphophallus develop
a compound inorescence consisting
of an elongate or ovate spathe (a
sheathing bract) which usually
envelops the spadix (a ower spike
with a eshy axis).
The spathe shape varies between
species but in the more dramatic
species it is bell-shaped with ribbed
sides and a frilled margin. It is
generally brownish-purple to red or
whitish-green. The spadix may be
yellow, cream, whitish, dark red,
purple or black, and often hollow.
It is completely enveloped in the
spathe and bracts when it rst
emerges. The base of the spadix
bears numerous male and female
orets, more-or-less tightly enclosed
in a chamber created by the spathe.
The female orets are at the base
of the spadix and consist of a pistil.
The male orets sit above them and
consist of stamens. In many species a
specialised zone is found between
the male and female orets; this
either provides food for visiting
insects or carries barrier structures
to temporarily enclose pollinating
insects. Above the male orets is the
terminal part, called the appendix,
which actually consists of fused
sterile male owers (staminodes).
These may form a smooth surface,
or parts of the staminodes may be
visible or transformed to other
structures such as warts or hairs.
In many Amorphophallus species
the life of the inorescence is eeting.
Once the spathe opens, pollination
must happen the same day. Some
Amorphophallus species have a
pleasant odour, but many do smell
strongly of carrion or rotting sh,
distributed by way of the tall spadix.
In the giant species, horticulturists
report that the odour is produced in
waves, but is strongest on the rst
two days that the bloom opens.
The life cycle stages of
Amorphophallus titanum
The foliage of
Amorphophallus paeoniifolius
. The leaves of some of the larger species resemble a young
tree, an effect enhanced by the mottled appearance of the leaf stalk
Lesley Hamamoto
The interior surface of the spathe
may bear ridges or warts that attract
mostly smaller beetles. Through a
number of ingenious traps, pollinating
insects are retained inside the spathe
to deposit pollen on the female
owers, which stay receptive for a
single day, while the male owers are
still closed. The male owers open
the next day and shower the trapped
insects with pollen, but by this time,
the female owers are no longer
receptive. Finally, the imprisoned,
pollen-laden insects can escape, and
they transport pollen to another
ower, bringing about cross-
pollination. Unfortunately, this
elaborate owering process may not
result in seed set because different
owers must bloom almost
simultaneously, and within relatively
close proximity. If pollination is
successful the inorescence develops
berry-like fruits which may be red,
orange, white, yellow or blue.
Some Victorian naturalists
thought that the inorescences of
the largest Amorphophallus were
pollinated by wild elephants.
However, ongoing observations have
revealed that in most species,
pollination of the owers is actually
performed only by small insects,
usually carrion beetles.
The genus is famous for including
A. titanum with a record inoresc-
ence height of 3.06m, and A. gigas
which can produce an inorescence
4m high, albeit on a tall peduncle;
these are commonly regarded as the
largest unbranched ower structures
on earth. The largest single ower is
borne by Rafesia arnoldii, and the
largest branched inorescence in the
plant kingdom belongs to the talipot
palm, Corypha umbraculifera. The
gigantic inorescence of A. titanum
is borne at ground level on a very
short scape, whereas that of A. gigas
is less massive, but borne on a much
taller scape up to 3m high. Both
species produce a strong, nauseating
scent giving rise to their local name
of bunga bangkai, or corpse owers,
in Sumatra, Indonesia.
Amorphophallus enthusiast Jeremy
Holden (pers. comm.) describes how
he sometimes found owers by
scenting the waves of odour at night:
‘My guides and I would suddenly get
a potent bout of that indescribable
odour while in camp. ‘Bunga bangkai
would be the spontaneous chorus,
followed by arguments about where
the plant was located, often hund-
reds of metres away. Conversely, we
might stumble on a scentless plant
while out walking. On one occasion a
guide and myself noted the lack
Amorphophallus abyssinicus
showing the typical arrangement found in the
genus of male owers (here shedding pollen) above the female owers
Wilbert Hettersceid
Wilbert Hettersceid
Although bulbils are usually produced underground, some species, such as
, bear them on the leaves
 
of scent. We both moved
in and took a deep sniff – this must
have coincided with a release
because the effect was literally
nauseating. Neither of us could
eat for the rest of the day.’
Amorphophallus titanum was
discovered in the forests of Sumatra
by the Italian botanist and explorer
Odoardo Beccari in 1878. Captivated
by the startling size of the plant,
Beccari dug up a tuber and recorded
that it ‘measured nearly 5 feet in
circum ference, and was so heavy
that two men could scarcely carry
it’ (Anon. 1889).
Beccari’s initial report was met
with disbelief by some. It was not
until the rst specimen owered
in cultivation at the Royal Botanic
Gardens, Kew, in 1889 that the
colossal size of the plant was truly
appreciated. This rst owering
attracted thousands of observers
from across Europe, and it was
reported that governesses were
required to protect young women
from so ‘indecent’ a sight
(Hetterscheid & Ittenbach 1996).
Kew’s achievement in owering
the rst A. titanum is all the more
astounding, since the plant had been
brought to maturity from seed over
a period of only 10 years or so.
One of the more widely known
and commonly cultivated members
of the genus is the smaller A. konjac.
It is cultivated across India, China,
Japan and Korea for its large, starchy
tubers. These are used to make an
edible our or jelly that is commonly
incorporated in a wide range of
Asian cuisines. Amorphophallus
abyssinicus, A. albus and A. paeoniifolius
are also cultivated as crop vegetables;
their tubers need to be cooked for a
long time before they are edible.
The cultivation requirements of
many Amorphophallus remain poorly
The distinctive ower of the commonly cultivated crop plant,
Amorphophallus paeoniifolius
Wilbert Hetterscheid
The tuber of
Amorphophallus paeoniifolius
is edible; this one is about 30cm in diameter
documented, but some species can
be cultivated with relative ease, and
encouraged to ower with little
effort. Hetterschied & Ittenbach
(1996) provide the most complete
published overview of the specic
cultivation needs of a wide range of
Amorphophallus species, on which the
following paragraphs are based.
The widely distributed A. bulbifer,
A. konjac (usually grown under the
name A. rivieri) and A. paeoniifolius
are the easiest to grow. They are
readily available through tropical
markets and specialist tropical bulb
suppliers. These species require rich,
well-drained soil or compost, occas-
ional fertilizing, shade from direct
sunlight, a minimum temperature of
22°C in the day and 19°C at night,
and a well-dened resting period.
species encountered on Mount Halcon in the Philippines – the fused staminodes making up the appendix give it a warty appearance
A potentially new species from Vietnam
Amorphophallus beccarii
, a Sumatran species
 
Depending upon the species, during
dormancy the tuber should either be
dug up and stored in a cool, dry
position, or left in the substrate.
It is likely that most other Amor
phophallus species can be cultivated
successfully in similar conditions,
although a few from more arid
habitats will require a drier regime.
Unfortunately, the giant species,
A. gigas and A. titanum, are more
difcult to cultivate because their
huge tubers are prone to rotting.
They also require enormous growing
spaces, and are less likely to produce
seeds or offshoots. However, if
grown in well-drained conditions
with considerable care given to
dormancy, both may be cultivated
to maturity in 10-–15 years. They will
ower every 2–3 years if suitable
conditions are maintained.
Most of the smaller Amorphophallus
species readily produce offsets every
year. These should be severed and
planted separately when the mother
tuber is replanted for a new season.
The percentage that establish succ-
essfully as separate plants varies
considerably; some may remain
inactive for years without sprouting
before nally dying. Conversely, a
latent offset may start growing
spontaneously after years, so tubers
should not be discarded until dead.
Certain species produce bulbils on
the leaves. In some, a bulbil develops
on the surface of leaet branching
points (A. bulbifer and A. muelleri),
whereas in others the entire
branching point of the leaf develops
into a bulbil and is released when the
leaf rots away (A. angulatus, A. manta,
and A. sparsiorus). Once detached,
the bulbils may be planted separately
and treated as an adult plant.
Cuttings can also be made from the
leaves and parts of the tuber,
although with variable success.
Some Amorphophallus species
produce seed without articial
pollination (A. bulbifer, A. kiusianus
and A. muelleri), although most do
not. If pollination is attempted in
cultivation it must be done on the
rst day of owering to t with the
plant’s owering physiology. Self-
pollination does succeed in a few
taxa, though this usually leads to a
very poor seed-set.
Articial hybrids have been
created in cultivation, for example
A. albispathus
A. longituberosus and
A. odoratus
A. yunnanensis, although
these are not widespread.
When harvesting, the seeds may
be removed from the berry esh but
must not be allowed to dry, as this
can cause fatal desiccation of the
embryo. Fresh seed of
Amorphophallus usually germinates
quickly, within 1–3 weeks, when
sown on moist, nutrient-poor,
slightly acidic compost. Notable
exceptions include A. henryi and
A. kiusianus, which may take a year
or more to germinate. The rst
seedling leaf is often not very
divided, becoming more so in
successive leaves. Seedlings may
produce many leaves over their rst
season before their rst dormancy
period starts. Dormant young tubers
are best left in the soil until they are
larger and more resistant to drought.
Some botanic gardens have amassed
extensive collections of
Amorphophallus for research or
display. Those with the best
collections accessible to the public
are at the Leiden Botanical Garden
in the Netherlands, Hamburg
Botanic Gardens (the largest of its
Move these
two pics to p93
Amorphophallus napiger
, a species from Thailand The tall inorescence of
Amorphophallus gigas
kind and the former research
collection of Wilbert Hetterscheid),
Bonn Botanic Garden in Germany,
Roayal Botanic Gardens, Kew, in the
UK, Bogor Botanic Garden in
Indonesia, and the Fairchild
Tropical Botanic Garden in the USA.
Seeing A. titanum ower in the
wild requires patience. Although
they usually ower after four years at
the ‘petiole stage’ there is no advance
warning (unlike with Rafesia where
buds can be located). The ower
may only exist for 24 hours, usually
opening at night, before closing up.
This means most owers that locals
nd are already closed before news
gets out. One of the best places is
Batang Palupuh reserve, 20km from
the town of Bukittinggi, West
Sumatra. It was set up to protect
Rafesia arnoldii, and Amorphophallus
titanum can sometimes be seen there.
If owering specimens are not found
within the reserve, the helpful guides
can usually lead visitors to view
plants in surrounding forests within
a few days. The reserve does not
have a website but it is easily
accessible from Bukittingii without
an appointment.
The International Aroid Society
( offers excellent
information for those interested in
Amorphophallus. The society’s
members and listed aroid nurseries
are the best sources to acquire
infrequently cultivated Amorphophallus
species (one good source is www.
All who are new to Amorphophallus
cultivation are strongly recommended
to read Hetterscheid & Ittenbach
(1996), the most complete
horticultural overview of the genus.
At the start of the 21st century we
are only beginning to understand the
diversity and taxonomy of this extra-
ordinary genus. Many species are
infrequently observed, and the basic
aspects of their biology and ecology
are still unknown. Also, new species
continue to be discovered as remote
parts of tropical Africa and southern
Asia open for exploration.
However, their extraordinary
ower shapes, colours, scents, and
sometimes gigantic sizes, make them
fascinating plants to cultivate at
home, often in conditions that are
relatively easy to provide.
st e w a r t Mcph e r s o n is a
plant explorer and writer with a
particular interest in unusual plants
wi l b e r t he t t e r s c h e i d is
Director of Von Gimborn Arboretum,
the Netherlands. He is preparing a
revision and phylogeny of
Amorphophallus and he also has a
taxonomic interest in Typhonium
and cultivated plants
The authors would like to thank
Alastair Robinson, Andreas
Fleischmann and Jeremy Holden for
their kind help in editing and
sourcing images for this article.
Anon. (1889) A vegetable titan.
Gard. Chron. 129(5): 750
Gandawijaja, D, Idris, S,
Nasution, R, Nyman, LP &
Arditti, J (1983) Amorphophallus
titanum Becc. A historical review and
some recent observations. Ann. Bot.
51(3): 269–278
Hetterscheid, W & Ittenbach, S
(1996) Everything you always wanted
to know about Amorphophallus, but
were afraid to stick your nose into!!!!!
Aroideana 19: 7–129
Finding the owers of
A. titanum
can be a challenge, but they can often be tracked down by scent
... ex Arcangeli and A. gigas Teijsm. & Binnend., the petiole of mature leaves reaches heights of up to 6 m (McPherson & Hetterscheid, 2011) and resembles a lichen-covered tree trunk (Hejnowicz & Barthlott, 2005;Lobin et al., 2007;McPherson & Hetterscheid, 2011). Figure 1 illustrates the dimensions of A. titanum (Fig. 1A, B), A. decus-silvae Backer & Alderw. ...
... Finally, the Malaysian-Indonesian clade ( Fig. 6; tilted cross icon above the branch) contains all the species displaying the cyanobacterial layer type, with or without accompanying lichen mimicry. Besides containing predominantly large-growing species, every giant species of the genus is found in this clade, such as A. borneensis (2.0-m petiole, Hetterscheid & Ittenbach, 1996), A. lambii (2.0-m petiole, Hetterscheid & Ittenbach, 1996), A. decus-silvae (3.5-m petiole, Hetterscheid & Ittenbach, 1996, A. gigas (4.0-m petiole, Hetterscheid & Ittenbach, 1996) and A. titanum (6.0 m petiole, McPherson & Hetterscheid, 2011). ...
... Thus, petiolar mimicry alone cannot account for the evolution of giant, tree masqueradeperforming species such as A. titanum, and additional factors have to be taken into consideration. The leaf height and width of the lamina of A. titanum can reach 6 m and more (McPherson & Hetterscheid, 2011), and the construction of the lamina 'relies entirely on turgor pressure for mechanical support' (Hejnowicz & Barthlott, 2005). This makes the lamina vulnerable to external forces such as running animals and strong winds. ...
Full-text available
We revisit a case of mimicry in Amorphophallus involving visual mimicry of lichens and colonies of cyanobacteria on their tree-trunk sized petioles. We investigate the entire genus for similar defensive coloration types and report a defensive leaf coloration strategy in several Amorphophallus spp. that involves mimicry, camouflage and plant-mimicking that results in defensive visual masquerade. We propose that the visual expression of lichen and cyanobacteria mimicry enables the huge and fleshy petioles to look like solid non-edible tree trunks, a classic case of masquerade, probably as defence against herbivores. The results are discussed in a phylogenetic and evolutionary context.
... The maturation period of different species of Amorphophallus sometimes varies in terms of years. Most species are seasonal and show a period of activity and dormancy sometimes for decades and in few cases even centuries (Stewart & Wilbert, 2011). The plant produces a single inflorescence followed by a solitary leaf. ...
... Moreover, some people regard its inflorescence as bizarre. The solitary leaf resembles a small tree with hundreds of leaflets from its leaf blade (Stewart & Wilbert, 2011;Dey et al. 2012). ...
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Amorphophallus paeoniifolius is a very common tuber plant having diverse secondary metabolites and palatability levels. Keeping the problems of food shortage & novel infectious diseases throughout the world, an attempt has been made through field works during 2009 to 2020 to gather the information on its ethnobotany, bioactive compounds from lab work and pharmacological properties from secondary sources to make it future nutraceutical against food disorders & novel microbial diseases. The tuber is used as food and medicines, it is rich with primary & secondary metabolites and its extracts are used to treat various infectious diseases. The compounds present in the species have potential to make novel drugs against present health problems throughout the world. The present study highlights the importance of wild tuberous plants in mitigation of food shortage, food disorders, anti-microbial resistance, novel bacterial & viral diseases like MDR-TB and COVID-19.
... Las especies pudieron ser identificada mediante comparaciones con descriptores, claves e imágenes que aparecen en Hetterscheid & Peng (1995), Jansen, Van der Wilk & Hetterscheid (1996), Heng, et. al., (2005); McPherson & Hetterscheid (2011), Madhurima, Kuppast & Mankani (2012), Ramesh & Sudhanshu (2016), Hetterscheid, Medecilo, Callado & Galloway (2020 La búsqueda de evidencias documentales de la presencia en Cuba de esta especie, incluyó la revisión de materiales depositados en los herbarios: HAC, HIPC y ULV (acrónimos según Thiers, 2020), así como la revisión bibliográfica y la consulta a especialistas asociados a estas instituciones. ...
... Esta planta, a la que le son propicios los climas tropicales y subtropicales, es considerada nativa en varios territorios del sur y el sudeste de Asia, el norte de Australia y Oceanía, entre ellos China (parte del sur, incluyendo a Taiwán), Bangladés, India, Sri Lanka, Laos, Birmania, Tailandia, Vietnam, la isla de Borneo, la isla de Java, Malasia, Filipinas, la isla de Célebes, Sumatra, Nueva Guinea, el norte de Australia, Fiji y Samoa (Jansen, Van der Wilk & Hetterscheid, 1996;McPherson & Hetterscheid, 2011;Madhurima, Kuppast & Mankani, 2012). ...
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Contexto: La presencia en distintas ciudades cubanas de plantas de Amorphophallus Blume ex Decne (Araceae), de cuyo cultivo en el país se encontraron escasas y poco explícitas evidencias en la literatura científica, motivó un estudio desde el punto de vista sistemático, fitogeográfico y etnobotánico. Objetivo: Develar la nomenclatura, taxonomía, caracterización fenotípica, diferencias con taxones afines, distribución y utilidad de los representantes de Amorphophallus Blume ex Decne cultivados actualmente en Cuba, fuera de colecciones científicas. Métodos: Especímenes mantenidos en jardines de la ciudad de Camagüey fueron estudiados mediante la utilización de métodos como el trabajo con colecciones, la comparación con descriptores y claves, así como la descripción e ilustración científica. Resultados: Se confirma la presencia en Cuba del género Amorphophallus Blume ex Decne, del cual se relaciona la presencia de tres especies: A. paeoniifolius (Dennst.) Nicolson, A. konjac K. Koch y A. titanum (Becc.) Becc. ex Arcang. Se establecen precisiones sobre la nomenclatura, se describen el género y dos de las especies, a la vez que se actualiza la clave analítica para diferenciar los géneros de Araceae presentes en el país y se ofrece otra para diferenciar las dos especies descritas. Se discuten aspectos relacionados con su utilidad (comprobada o potencial), desde la perspectiva alimentaria, medicinal y para el enriquecimiento nutricional del suelo. Conclusiones: Amorphophallus Blume ex Decne, denotado al menos por A. paeoniifolius (Dennst.) Nicolson y A. konjac K. Koch, dado su frecuente cultivo ornamental en Cuba, ha de ser en lo adelante incluido en los catálogos y publicaciones especializadas dedicadas a la flora del país. Se identifican potencialidades para una gestión sostenible de las especies.
... The most famous species of the genus Amorphophallus are the two giants of the genus, A. titanum and A. gigas Teijsm and Binnend. These species develop large leaves and inflorescences, the latter exceeding three metres height (Hetterscheid 1994;Hetterscheid and Ittenbach 1996;McPherson and Hetterscheid 2011). The inflorescences carry spathes that are inwardly purplish and are accompanied by foul smells of decomposing organic material, such as carrion, and are therefore referred to as "carrion" or "corpse flowers" (Barthlott and Lobin 1998;Barthlott et al. 2009;Chen et al. 2015;Jürgens and Shuttleworth 2016;Raman et al. 2017). ...
Full-text available
The genus Amorphophallus encompasses some 230 species and is one of the largest genera of the Araceae family. Most species release scents, smelling of carrion, faeces, dung and similar nauseating odours for pollinator attraction and are therefore considered to have evolved a deceptive pollination syndrome. Some of the most iconic members of the genus, such as the A . titanum and A . gigas , are considered to be carrion mimics. Copro-necrophagous insects, beetles and flies in particular, are attracted by these scents and are therefore assumed to act as pollinators. However, many reports and observations on Amorphophallus pollinators are anecdotal in nature or do not distinguish between legitimate pollinators and non-pollinating visitors. Moreover, some published observations are not readily accessible as they are many decades old. Therefore, the available data and information about insect visitors and/or pollinators in the genus Amorphophallus is compiled, reviewed and discussed.
... The appendix is assumed to be evolutionary derived from fused staminate flowers and it is usually smooth (Bogner et al. 1985, McPherson and Hetterscheid 2011, Hetterscheid et al. 2012. However, in some species the appendix is not smooth but forms protuberances/structures which can be wart-like: verrucate (A. ...
Amorphophallus minimus (Araceae) is herein described and illustrated as a new species from the montane forest of Nueva Ecija, Luzon island, Philippines. A. minimus has an overall resemblance to Amorphophallus palawanensis Bogner and Hett., however, it is easily distinguished by having a club-shaped and colliculate appendix that is contiguous with the male zone, oblate stamens (2 per flower), presence of leaf bulbils, and its overall small dimensions. Amorphophallus minimus is currently the only species in the Philippines found to inhabit a montane forest ecosystem.
... The proposed work deals with species of the Amorphophallus genus [1], and is intended as a case study to validate the hypothesis that species can be classified on the basis of their DNA fingerprints. The first experimental setup [24] deals with the identification of the Amorphophallus muelleri species on the basis of DNA fingerprints among thirty seven species of the Amorphophallus genus. ...
The proposed work aims at designing a classification system for automatic identification of A. muelleri species, grown as a potential cash crop in many Asian countries, from the DNA fingerprints of Amorphophallus genus. Four sets of forty eight DNA fingerprints belonging to thirty seven species of the Amorphophallus genus, developed with the help of four different primers are considered for the experiment, with an objective to identify only the fingerprints of the species of interest. A second experimental setup deals with the automatic classification of species containing high amounts of glucomannan from the same set of DNA fingerprints of the Amorphophallus genus. For each set of forty eight DNA fingerprints generated with a specific primer, the DNA fingerprints are preprocessed to extract a forty two dimensional feature vector which is used to generate a k-Nearest Neighbor based classifier based on the Leave One Out Cross Validation protocol. Final classification based on outputs from individual classifiers constructed with respect to the four different primers is performed according to a n-star consensus strategy. The n-star consensus predicts species A. muelleri with cent per cent accuracy while it predicts species containing glucomannan with a more modest accuracy of 81.25%. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
... For these reasons, Amorphophallus underground stems are collected widely from the forest and used as food and in medicinal processing (Independent News Network, 2015). In addition, many attractive species are used for decoration (McPherson and Hetterscheid, 2011). Although Amorphophallus specimens in Thailand have been surveyed and classified to the species level (Hetterscheid, 2012), the systematic study of this genus still needs revision. ...
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Twenty-three species of Amorphophallus Blume ex Decne. were collected from several areas of Thailand between November 2008 and May 2012, and grown under greenhouse conditions with 70% sunlight. Leaf blade anatomy characteristics were studied using free hand section and epidermal peeled slides before being observed using a light transmission microscope from May 2011 to November 2013. The results showed the different anatomical characteristics of each species. The midribs in cross section were curved, or had 5, 6, 7, 8 or 12 lobes. Vascular bundles numbered 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 15, 16 or 23. The upper and lower epidermal cell walls had three subtypes—straight-sided, undulate or sinuous anticlinal. Both sides of the epidermal cell wall can be similar or can vary in each species. There were 1, 2, 3, 4 or 6 subsidiary cells along both sides of paired guard cells and the stomatal type was paracytic and stomatal subtypes varied from species to species, being brachyparacytic, hemiparacytic, amphibrachyparacytic, paratetracytic or parahexacytic. The stomatal number was 16–104/mm² of leaf area and varied with the leaf gloss and leaf texture of each species.
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