Sinningia douglasii Tuber

Many sinningia species have tubers which normally grow partially exposed, with the upper surface above the soil line.  This tuber of Sinningia douglasii shows roots only on the bottom half.  Notice the new shoots emerging from a kind of crown, formed from the dried bases of previous years' shoots.  There are almost a dozen shoots visible in this picture.  Fewer than half of them will develop into mature stems with leaves and flowers.  The others are insurance, in case something happens to the primary shoots. 

S. douglasii can be found in Brazil growing as an epiphyte.  In 1999, the Gesneriad Research Foundation (GRF) travelers in Brazil saw it growing in the furrows of tiled roofs, where enough plant debris had accumulated to support opportunistic vegetation.

See also another picture of a sprouting S. douglasii tuber.

See also the picture of a flowering plant on Ron Myhr's Gesneriad Reference Web.

Douglasii: tuber