Thursday, December 17, 2009

Indian Pipe

This extremely cool plant was found at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Monotropa uniflora, also known as the Ghost Plant, Indian Pipe, or Corpse Plant is a herbaceous perennial plant, native to temperate regions of Asia, North America and northern South America. It is quite rare, does not contain chlorophyll, therefore does not photosynthesize.  It obtains it's nutrients from a relationship with mycorrhizal fungus which forms a network with tree roots.  It grows in very dark environments, such as in the understory of dense trees and forests where the soil is not disturbed.  Don't try to transplant, since it has such a complex relationship with mycorrhizal fungus, it is very difficult to propagate.  

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