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Abgeschickt von Darcy Gunnlaugson am 08 April, 2005 um 06:42:01:
Antwort auf: Cyps need root tips to absorb fertilizer? von Michael Vaughn am 27 Maerz, 2005 um 15:56:44:
I confess. I am one the individuals who has perpetuated the legend that growing root tips sustain the plant, and that if you cut them off, the plant will not be able to sustain itself, and will subsequently die. This is just a rule thumb statement I have perpetuated for the layman, and arguing that tips do or do not sustain the plant, distracts from why I perpetuated the myth... that is, short root cut plants offered in dormancy have nearly a 100% chance of dying. For the same reason, I offered another myth... that plants with dark roots in dormancy are also on their way out. I have also quoted this in the past, and offered that such plants should be avoided as if they are already dead. It does not mean that all plants offered with such dark roots are dead or dying... as often it is simply a bacteria living along the roots which will be in turn eaten by soil organisms after planting out, and they will return to looking white once the soil organisms have their way with the bacteria. But the rule of the thumb, is avoid these dark rooted plants as if they were dying... unless you really know what you are looking at. More specifically, if the roots are dark and limp, it's essentially dead. If they are not limp, but dark, there is a chance the plant is still healthy... or that it's already on it's way to becoming a plant with dark limp roots. Can you afford the chance if you do not know, is ultimately the final question.
Similarly, it's why I generally advised to avoid short root cut plants like the plague, unless you really know what you are doing. Successful revival of the plants in the above categories has to be in an inert medium with careful daily observation and with foliar feeding as Uta has suggested. Even then, extremely large odds are against your success. As for the debate on growing tips sustaining the plant or not, if one means the quarter inch of meristem on the end... the answer is obviously a resounding "No". If they are dormant plants and cut short by inches, (which is what I mean by the growing root tips) I suspect the impact will likely be fatal, and unlike other garden plants where you can cut short the roots and divide them with a spade, Cypripedium are not as resilient... especially with remaindered roots. Perhaps someone with two plants to spare can cut all the roots short by a few inches and plant one in garden soil and one in an inert medium, observe and publish the results of the experiment to the forum. Death, if it occurs, will of course be from pathogens where the plant has been unable to sustain itself like it once did and simultaneously fight off pathogenic infection in the absent truncated areas from where it once drew sustenance.
Question: If you die from cancerous growths in your kidneys, do you die from kidney failure, or from cancer? The ideal answer would include both, but if you read the death certificate it is likely to say kidney failure. However, you will likely be added to the database for cancer caused deaths. If you were a smoker, this will be the underlying cause, and you will also be added to that database. My advice in this metaphor, is to avoid smoking in the first place, and the semantics of kidney failure versus cancer and smoking will likely not have to occur.
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