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Re: [Aroid-l] Philodendron 'Santa Leopoldina'

  • Subject: Re: [Aroid-l] Philodendron 'Santa Leopoldina'
  • From: Bluesea <chammer@cfl.rr.com>
  • Date: Sat, 24 Feb 2007 12:50:35 -0500

Based on the photos I've seen of P. spiritus-sancti ('Santa Leopoldina') and all the other philodendrons erroneously called 'Santa Leopoldina', there can be no mistaking the real thing based on the strikingly narrow leaf blade length to width ratio.  To my mind the only philodendron that can legitimately be called 'Santa Leopoldina' is the one the Brazilian locals have endeared with this name for perhaps centuries.  And that plant is P. spiritus-sancti. 

There is no argument whatever to be made regarding 'first publishing rights' of the name 'Santa Leopoldina' since it is not a scientific name under the control of botanical nomenclature. 

In any case, those who have labeled these various species and hybrids with the name are in error, including Graf.  The name 'Santa Leopoldina' comes originally from the Brazilian people of the P. spiritus-sancti habitat, they coined it for this particular plant, so it cannot be placed on any other philodendron.  I do understand there are a couple of forms of spiritus-sancti with minor physical differences, such as reddish reverse.  But almost without exception, the philodendrons being erroneously called 'Santa Leopoldina' have little physical similarity to the real spiritus-sancti, and can be dismissed very easily.

central Florida

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