Ep. 27 - Spring Ephemerals: Skunk Cabbage

It's not a skunk... and it's not a cabbage... This month, Steve and Bill discuss Skunk Cabbage. The guys go over the spathe, spadix, contractile roots, and thermogenesis, among other things. We also pose maybe too many questions to our audience:

1. Is Skunk Cabbage a clonal species?
2. Can Skunk Cabbage have multiple inflorescences? 
3. Do warblers nest in Skunk Cabbage spathes? 
4. Does Skunk Cabbage heat up to to promote cross pollination? 

Enjoy (and help us answer these questions)!

The mic DID NOT pick up the brown creeper song. Steve had to edit that in during post production. The moment was real, but the audio of the song was enhanced for your enjoyment. 

Steve suggests that species maps can be created from aerial photographs. This is almost certainly wrong... he was thinking of identifying wetlands, not producing specific species range maps, from aerial photographs. Some wires got crossed in his brain.

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Work Cited:
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Roger S. Seymour, Amy J. Blaylock, 1999. Switching off the heater: influence of ambient temperature on thermoregulation by eastern skunk cabbage Symplocarpus foetidus, Journal of Experimental Botany, Volume 50, Issue 338, Pages 1525–1532, 

Seymour, R. S., 2004. Dynamics and precision of thermoregulatory responses of eastern skunk cabbage Symplocarpus foetidus. Plant, Cell & Environment, 27: 1014-1022. doi:10.1111/j.1365-3040.2004.01206.x

“Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus Foetidus).” Illinois Wildflowers, <www.illinoiswildflowers.info/wetland/plants/skunk_cabbage.htm>

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