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Re: Off-topic: examples of botanical nomenclature

  • Subject: Re: Off-topic: examples of botanical nomenclature
  • From: "Tom Croat" <Thomas.Croat@mobot.org>
  • Date: Fri, 1 Oct 2010 13:25:49 -0500

Dear Steve:

	I think that you will have a hard time coming up with something
with more than 55 synonyms. If you do it will be some widespread taxon,
like Poa annua, a grass. It would have to be one that is variable and
ranges all over the world.  Most aroids are too endemic to have many


-----Original Message-----
From: aroid-l-bounces@www.gizmoworks.com
[mailto:aroid-l-bounces@www.gizmoworks.com] On Behalf Of Steve Marak
Sent: Friday, October 01, 2010 11:12 AM
To: Aroid list
Subject: [Aroid-l] Off-topic: examples of botanical nomenclature


This appeal for help is somewhat off-topic, so please excuse it (and 
delete it, if you're not interested).

I'm looking for examples of a couple of things in the area of botanical 
nomenclature, and I can think of no better group to ask than the people
this list.

The first is the most complex example of a valid (and preferably, 
currently accepted) name, of any plant (i.e., not restricted to aroids),

whether that complexity comes from ranks below species or multiple 
authorities or both. One of the best ones I have now is:

Paphiopedilum barbigerum Tang & Wang var. coccineum (Perner & Herrm.) 

which conveniently (for me) even has a synonym, but I'm looking for 
something even more complex, if it exists. Knowing the publication would

be nice, too, but is not essential for what I'm after. (Examples of 
similar complexity to the above but using other ranks - subsp., f., etc.
would also be appreciated.)

The second question is what plant, again regardless of family, has the 
most synonyms? I'm aware of one poor orchid with, if I counted
55, but I suspect there are plants even more confused about their 
identities out there. For my purposes I'm concerned only with whether
name now appears as a synonym of the currently accepted name and not so 
much how it got there (i.e., whether it was validly published and later 
reduced to synonomy, nom. illeg., etc). I realize that whatever 
the answer is, it can change, but again that's not a concern for me at

All help or pointers to good places to find the answer myself will be 
appreciated. I've spent plenty of time on Tropicos, IPNI, etc., but my 
oddball questions are not easily answered with those tools - or perhaps
just don't know how to ask them.


-- Steve Marak
-- samarak@gizmoworks.com
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