The name Arisaema was established in 1831 by German botanist and explorer Von Matius (1794-1868) and was based on three Himalayan species A. costatum, nepenthoides and speciosum which had previously been described and illustrated in 1828 by dutch born surgeon and botanist Nathaniel Wallich who placed them under the genus Arum.
Of course Arisaemas can be found in other regions of the northern hemisphere including the mountain areas of Asia as the Himalaya region, India, China and Japan, and there are two species originated from N. America.
Most arisaemas grow in humus rich soil in filtered light positions. Hardiness varies considerably among the species. Some can be grown in regions where winter temperatures drop to around below -10 Deg C. provided the soil is not water-logged. Tropical species need to be grown in frost free regions. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight, particularly during the hotter times of the day.
We have a small collection of 9 of these very beautiful plants. Most have been grown from seed purchased from various sources. Of these 9 we can only really confirm the identity of 3; flavum, sikokianum and ringens. The others will need careful examination to confirm, or otherwise their identity. We make this point because references in relation to Arisaema are uniform. For example many texts still record that A. amurense can be found in Japan. However, in 1986 japanese botanist Murata revised the group of A. amurense and stated that this species is restricted to continental Asia including Korea, Russia and China and not found in Japan. The similar Japanese species is A. ovale.
We will continue to review our collection.
Japan, South Korea, China and Taiwan.
It typically grows to 40cm tall. Each tuber produces a single stalk containing two glossy green trifoliate leaves, with each leaf having three ovate to elliptic leaflets. From the centre of the leaf stalks rises a cobra-like flower in spring. Each flower consists of a showy, green and purple striped spathe with a hood that covers the inner yellow to white flower spike known as the spadix. Plants go dormant in summer.