Oxalis in IBSA newsletter

AW awilson@avonia.com
Wed, 26 Oct 2011 10:30:05 PDT
It is fascinating to read this input from IBSA. I have a comment and a
question: (1) I assume 'triotyly' is a typo and should read 'tristyly'; (2)
The extract reads ''one of the most adaptable of plants was followed by
descriptions of the major genera and pictures and tips on recognising the
commoner species" I was wondering what was meant by "genera" in this
context. The talk was about Oxalis and, so far as I know it has not (yet)
been split up into other genera.

San Diego

From: pbs-bounces@lists.ibiblio.org [mailto:pbs-bounces@lists.ibiblio.org]
On Behalf Of Mary Sue Ittner

I have mentioned before that I also belong to the Indigenous Bulb
Association of South Africa. They publish a first rate annual bulletin and
also have periodic email newsletters and bulb chats. 
They put on the recent Symposium and two previous ones we were lucky to
attend. I am envious of their monthly meetings in Cape Town where they bring
plants to show their members and also have a speaker.

I was interested in the report on the speaker for the last month since it
was a talk on Oxalis. Many of us were greatly disappointed when Oxalis was
not included in the Color Encyclopedia of Cape Bulbs as this is such a large
genus with many representatives in South Africa and not a lot of easily
obtainable data about telling them apart. Graham Duncan includes a few of
the species in his updated Grow Bulbs, but only a few.

 From the IBSA newsletter I am passing on this paragraph about the talk for
all of you who are interested in Oxalis and not members of IBSA.

>Dr Kenneth Oberlander gave a very fascinating talk, covering the 
>diversity (greatest  in Southern Africa and South America) and ecology 
>of the not-very-well understood family of Oxalis, named for the 
>oxalates found in the plant, comprises the 7th largest genus of the 
>winter rainfall Cape Flora. Here most species are mostly geophytic and 
>widely distributed in habitats ranging from richtersveld, fynbos, 
>karroo, West Coast and the Peninsula. 109 / 270 taxa are on the Red 
>Data list. They are poorly known as many species flower early, before 
>August, but also the genetic diversity or triotyly gives rise to 
>bewilderingly variable flower morphology, where the 3 forms co-exist 
>within a small radius in a 1:1:1 ratio.
>This tantalising glimpse of one of the most adaptable of plants was 
>followed by descriptions of the major genera and pictures and tips on 
>recognising the commoner species.

Mary Sue 

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