Ghost


euphorbia_lactea_ghost_crest

Euphorbia lactea crest “Ghost”

So many things going on here. First we have a crest, a process of fasciation, possibly caused by a virus, whereby the growing tip, the apical meristem, grows perpendicular to the stem rather than from a single point as normal.

Then we have the “ghosting” where by the plant has lost most of it’s chlorophyll, also probably through a virus. Now normally for a ghost plant to survive, myco-heterotrophy will provide the food needed as it takes advantage of a symbiotic relationship with certain fungi. However, in this particular case, this ghosted crest has not successfully developed it’s long-term relationship to the fungi to be able to comfortably rely on them enough, or at all. So off to the grafters we go.

And we see that this crest is in fact grafted onto another euphorbia which serves as the rootstock for this ghosted crested scion.

And all this just so that we may enjoy this stunning plant. Or for you, this photo.


    
    
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