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Re: [aroid-l] Typhoniums linked

  • Subject: Re: [aroid-l] Typhoniums linked
  • From: Rand Nicholson writserv@nbnet.nb.ca
  • Date: Fri, 7 Feb 2003 12:22:03 -0400

Your Lordliness:

I subscribe to a few other lists, notably an orchid and carnivorous plants list, where the naming of names is sometimes discussed by knowledgeable people with hammers and battleaxes a-flailing, though usually more civilized. Although sometimes fun from an onlooker's point of view (I keep very still and try not to make eye contact), one can appreciate the underlying seriousness of what is being attempted. Many times it has been brought home, the importance of getting it right amongst a sometimes bewildering (to me) confusion of criteria, historical inaccuracies, various schools of thought (ie: Lumpers and Splitters) and , of course, the personal take of some involved regarding the rules and guidelines of taxonomy itself. So, I do not mock the science or the attempt to classify things as they should be in order to allow me to say for certainty that my A. fargesii _is_ indeed A. fargesii and not A. franchetianum (which, by the way, it turned out to be - I think).

Typhonium venosum (see, I said it! Hardly hurt at all.) came to me as a "Voodoo Lily" with a burbling exhortation of how it would "flower hugely and gorgeously on your windowsill from the naked bulb without being potted into soil!" Who amongst us could resist that? And it did what they said.

After I regained consciousness I found out everything I could, which was _very_ difficult at that time, (my email was still a decade away in the early eighties) about the amazing beast, my first bulbous Aroid, and decided that Sauromatum guttatum was a keeper (much to the disgust of my friends and family who had witnessed the event).

You see, I had a lot invested in the name as well as the plant which still lives on today, happily flaunting its inflorescence each spring like clockwork _out_ of doors in fresh moving air in a nice roomy pot with some of its offspring. Now the place is crawling with various Aroids and I could not be happier. I bend a knee before your phalloid wisdom m'Lord and If you find that you must rename any of them I will dutifully make the appropriate labels and use them freely, as I have a large supply of markers and labels are cheap. And I actually do want to know what I have, am growing, and be able to find good information on them. Names are, indeed, important.

(I should also get points for restraint in complying with your expectations regarding any answer to your question. Significant restraint, when one considers possible responses, which, of course, I haven't.)

You will forgive me though, I trust, if I dance The Aroid Dance of Joy _if_ an old friend returns? And have a bit of fun with this along the way?

Best Regards,

Rantless Rand
z5b (I wish) Maritime Canada

Ranting Rand,

You are absolutely right. Us taxonomists make life complicated at times. On
the other hand, plant people are inherently conservative in this, not
appreciating the scientific dynamics of taxonomy, which after all IS
science. What would happen if scientific developement stopped? (I don't
expect a smart-ass answer to this!!!!!!! o.k.!!!!!)

Congrats with your Sauromatum labels! Don't throw 'em away just yet!!!!!!!!


Lord P.

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