This has been an interesting thread. I find myself very often trying to decipher the roots of Latin names. Knowing the meaning makes it much easier to memorize the names. While we can't be absolutely sure of the author's meaning of a specific epithet without looking into the original literature (even then it may still be unclear), we can make a few guesses. I would have to agree with the guesses so far that 1) canadensis is a misnomer where Linnaeus thought it came from Canada, and 2) it probably refers to a hallow where the plant was first collected -- suffixes which ends in "ensis" refers to locality of a specimen. Here are a few useful suffixes which we often encounter in Latin nomenclature: locality: -ensis (canadensis) = refers to the locality of the specimen or the range of the species -cola (volcanicola) = living on or the vicinity of possessive: -ii (shawii) = literally means "of Shaw" or "belonging to Shaw", masculine form which means that Shaw must be a man. -ae (barbarae) = "of Barbara", feminine form -iana or -ana (namaquana) = can also be used to indicate belonging to a person or a place -orum (vocanorum) = also belonging to, but plural and often used for objects, masculine form -arum = same as orum, but feminine Nhu Berkeley, CA -- few things are blooming but flowering buds abound!