Arisaema Tortuosum (Whipcord Cobra Lily)

Arisaema Tortuosum Seeds (Whipcord Cobra Lily Seeds)

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As the leaves unfurl, the pitcher that tops the stem opens to reveal a green Jack-in-the-pulpit flower, but with a whip-like tongue that extends from the mouth of the flower upwards to 12 or more inches.

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Arisaema tortuosum, the Whipcord Cobra Lily, is a species of considerable stature, up to 1.5 meter in gardens, but larger in the wild, maybe up to 2 meters. It is native from the Himalayas and western China to southern India and Myanmar (Burma). Arisaema tortuosum is so-called for the tortuous route taken by the spadix. The thick, 4' tall, fleshy stalk emerges in early June, adorned by two tropical-looking palmate green leaves near the top. As the leaves unfurl, the pitcher that tops the stem opens to reveal a green Jack-in-the-pulpit flower, but with a whip-like tongue that extends from the mouth of the flower upwards to 12 or more inches. Sometimes the spadix-appendage is green, other times it is purple. The flowers are dioecious, individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant. Hardiness zones 5-9, (-26°C/-15°F, -5°C/25°F) in Winter. Enjoys a moist, fertile, well-drained, neutral to acidic soil in a cool, shady site. Water regularly; do not overwater.
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Germination First, the seeds require 2 months of cold stratification. Arisaema seeds can be planted in a pot of potting soil, indoors. Keep damp soil, not soaking wet. Keep pot in warm situation 20°C/68°F, 24°C/75°F. Arisaema seeds will usually sprout within 4-6 weeks and will proceed to grow for up to 2-4 months. At this time, they will appear to slowly turn yellow and die. They are only going dormant. After a cold period, they will again resprout. Germination can take longer depending on their degree of unbroken dormancy, don't give up.
Scarification / Stratification This will break their dormancy. It creates a cold and moist environment for the seeds. Mixed in seeds with slightly moistened vermiculite or peat, only damp in a ziplock bag. Close zip bag shut and store it in the salad crisper compartment of your refrigerator. If any seeds begin to sprout during the cold stratification, simply remove the seed and plant.
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