Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Scoliopus bigelovii--Slink Pod
Sorry for the lousy pics! Taken at the Botanic Garden in Tilden, but it isn't their fault!
This unusual flower in the lily family has dull coloring and a weird smell. Because of the odor it is sometimes called fetid adder's tongue. It is pollinated by fungus gnats. After pollination, the seeds develop, and the heavy seed pod hangs to the ground, leading to the other common name, Slink Pod. Once on the ground, slugs eat the walls of the pods so that the seeds have an easier time getting out. Then ants take the seeds to feed on the elasiosomes so ants are involved in dispersal, too. This plant is involved with several animals!