The technical term used (in , for instance, the International Rules) for these "hybrid genera" is nothogenera. This word nothogenera is a sly dig at the nature of these combinations: the word nothogenera can be translated into plain English, somewhat freely, as phoney genera. And that is apparently what many botanists think of them. Was Jane McGary pulling our legs when she said that the x used with these names is the multiplication sign rather than the letter x? Is there a difference? Are the other mathematical symbols which superficially look like letters really something else? Inquiring minds want to know! Here's an editorial question: does one write "the nothogenus xAmarygia" or "the nothogenus Amarygia"? The former strikes me as redundant. Jim McKenney firstname.lastname@example.org Montgomery County, Maryland, USA, zone 7, where I'm beginning to wonder if I'm becoming a nothobotanist or a nothophilologist - in either case, high aspirations for a gadfly!.