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Goodyera pubescens not flowering

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DukeBoxer

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I have noticed that this year not one single plant in all the populations around our house that I know of (plants numbering into the hundreds) has an inflorescence. Has anyone else noticed this about plants they have seen? Could it be the weather or do they only flower once every few years? I thought it might be the weather, only because I saw dried flower stalks in almost all the populations that are probably from last year.

-Josh
 
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Doug

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Here in the Baltimore, Maryland area I've noticed the same thing. The last 3 years have seen lots of flowering, but this year I could count the number of flowering plants on one hand. It has been a near record breaking dry summer though.
 

DukeBoxer

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Doug, do you think that it's from rainfall...I'm not sure that it's the case here because it had rained quite a bit here up until about a month ago when it didn't rain for about 2 or 3 weeks. I was thinking more of the unusually cool weather all summer long, but you may be right. I'm sure it's probably a little bit of everything.
 
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Eric Muehlbauer

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I can't speak for natural populations, but in terms of G. pubescens that I have planted, it is advantageous if they don't bloom. I have found that plants that bloom frequently don't survive in subsequent years, while those that don't bloom have no problems coming back.
 

DukeBoxer

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Eric, what do you mean by early? From what I have read, their bloom time is from July to August, could my book be wrong?
 

TheLorax

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I've got one that finished blooming this past September. I've never really paid attention to when exactly they bloom but it seems to be somewhere around late summer/early fall. I wouldn't have even noticed this one blooming but I was out back and sort of stumbled upon it. They are planted in a dry oak savanna. I thought about nipping the flower scape but decided against it in favor of hoping the plant might possibly reseed itself. They seem to be happy where they are currently growing although I only have the original three plants purchased a few years ago.
 
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In the populations that I monitor, plants bloom about 4 years after coming up the first time. During this time they form groups of stems (I am calling a stem the underground portion from which the cirlce of leaves arise) by rhizomes. I find that after blooming once or twice, that stem does not bloom again, but the newer stems do on about their fourth year up. I find that seed set is fairly cyclical so there is good bloom for a couple of years then less until the newer stems are old enough. So some years it seems that nearly all stems are blooming then for a couple of years there are few until newer stems are old enough. I have not noticed strong correlation with rain or temperature during the season leading up to bloom.

I know there is a literature about this - I will look for it.

Ron
 

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