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I’ve always admired caladiums but never grew them until this year. One plant put up two leaves and then a strange-looking thing that definitely was not a leaf. It turned out to be a spathe with a fat spadix inside. How common is this, and does the spadix contain both male and female flowers?
It’s not very common for caladiums to form flowers, but apparently the environmental conditions in your garden were just right for them. Like the related calla lily and Jack-in-the-pulpit, the flowering structure consists of a hooded, petal-like bract called the spathe and a spike called a spadix. The tiny flowers are crowded along the spadix with the female flowers on the lower part and the male flowers above them. Following pollination the plant will form white berries.
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