Rain Lilies

J.E. Shields jshields@indy.net
Thu, 21 Nov 2013 17:02:37 PST
This raises not only the question of how good are some of the "accepted" 
names but -- especially if they are really documented -- of just what is a 
species in rainlilies?

So many of the rainlilies seem to be mainly apomictic that the sexual 
concept of a species -- an interbreeding population -- becomes 
untenable.  Microbiologists and mathematicians are questioning the 
relevance and indeed even the applicability of the species concept to 
asexually reproducing microorganisms.  Is every clone (in rainlilies, every 
apomictic maternal line) a distinct biological entitity?  Are there as many 
"species" of  rainlilies as there are apomicticly reproducing 
individuals?  Peter Grant wrote a book (30 years ago?) about plant 
speciation in which he used rainlilies and their apomictic maternal lines 
as examples of a challenge to the very concept.  The problem does not 
appear to have gotten any simpler in the intervening years.

Jim Shields

At 12:42 AM 11/22/2013 +0000, Alberto wrote:
>Worse, for a good number there is no evidence of an herbarium voucher of 
>them even existing.

Jim Shields             USDA Zone 5
P.O. Box 92              WWW:    http://www.shieldsgardens.com/
Westfield, Indiana 46074, USA
Lat. 40° 02.8' N, Long. 086° 06.6' W

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