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About that problematic, ex-species plant, Fortunei...

Dear Hosta-Open croonies,
Carolyn posted a message about H. 'Fortunei Obscura'.  I believe the question
asked whether she should purchase it.  The simple answer to that question is,
"Yes", if you don't already have it and you still have room to find it a home.
:-)   The more complex answer is, "Once you have it, and you wanted to know
what species of Hosta it belonged to, would you be able to discover that

W. George Schmidt reduced H. fortunei plants to cultivars.  Now, what was once
H. fortunei var. 'Obscura' becomes H. 'Fortunei Obscura'.  I "understood" the
plant more as H. fortunei 'Obscura' but now I see that we would be incorrect if
we use that name.

So, I have two questions about H. 'Fortunei Obscura':
1) In what species does George, or any taxonimist speaking with authority, now
place this specioid plant?

2) While the taxonimists are normally so very good at helping to straighten out
nomenclature, how did the plant name of H. sieboldiana 'Fortunei' get past the
muster of Mr. Schmid?  That name leaves my head spinning.    Does this actually
indicate that H. 'Fortunei Obscura' could be also referred to as H. sieboldiana
'Fortunei Obscura'?  If so, then I believe I may have answered by own
question.  However, I'm kind of amazed that this whole Fortunei group could be
a grouping within the species sieboldiana; there is more than a little
dissimilarity between these plants...

Could someone help me resolve this enigma?


Andrew Lietzow
(Who, if he comes to the AHS National Convention, should be required to bring
his very own roll of duct tape... :-))

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