What is a bulb?

Nhu Nguyen xerantheum@gmail.com
Mon, 07 May 2012 10:18:58 PDT
Thanks to all who have added to this conversation. This topic comes up once
in a while, and we usually settle to a similar conclusion as already stated
by several people.

For fuzzy taxa that don't quite fit our wiki definition, we only include
them if they don't belong to a group of plants that have many people
dedicated to them and where lots of good resources and cultural information
are already available. The succulents belong to this group. I think the
wiki generally picks up weird taxa that don't quite fit into any one
group's interest. Despite this, we still get good hits on these pages.

This brings us to Dylan's question:

> I don't know why it is the case that there should be a random sampling of a
> few orchid genera on the wiki and a few aroids (groups with their own
> dedicated fan clubs) while these decidedly geophytic succulent genera have
> been omitted, but it would be good to ad some of the latter to balance the
> necessarily heavy weight of the petaloid monocots.

The random sampling all has to do with people interested in working on the
pages. It's the same with omission, we didn't omit them on purpose, but
they appear omitted because no one had create a page for them. If anyone
has an interest in their group (say geophytic succulents) the wiki space is

And finally, why not orchids with pseudobulbs? The "pseudobulb" on the
Whatisabulb page refers to fleshy pseudobulbs such as those found in Crinum
and Ismene. When we get to epiphytic orchids, there's a whole world out
there with many, many societies (almost one in every major city) and many
dozens of forums. With so much resources and human power dedicated to them,
the PBS wiki does not need to be involved and we have decided to focus its
power generally on geophytes. And another reason for exclusion is that the
majority of them would never survive the cultural treatments that we use to
grow most bulbs.


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