Thursday, February 26, 2009

Messy, messy, messy

This triffid like mess is another specimen (or perhaps better colony) of something likely to be Zamia integrifolia from a local hotel. Again this is a narrow leaflet form. What has happened here is that the specimen(s) are/is enclosed in a walled in bed and the number of heads has multiplied and multiplied until you get the ungodly mess below.


What to do in such a scenario? Well really these should be treated just like any other number of perennial shrubs (eg say Hostas). The plants should be split and the excess removed to give the remainder room to grow and look splendid instead of cramped. The result of digging all these up would be a lot of things that look kind of like an enormous parsnip. It is this that resulted in Coontie earning the name Seminole Bread as Florida's Seminole peoples had developed a way to convert toxic starchy coontie into edible carbohydrate.

coontie cone

At least one of the heads was female and pushing cones. It would be interesting to see if seed production would occur if there were a male in there somewhere too. It would also of course be interesting to see the plants looking nice and spread through the resort replacing some of the other godawful planting on display. With yesterday's male and today's female cones, Zamia integrifolia is "complete" for the purposes of the photo list but I like it and the weird forms mean it will probably appear again soon, especially if I can lay my grubby little hands on the Palatka Giant.....


Mel said...

Messy but cool, looove the crazyness in nature!

tai haku said...

Me too, me too.