Plants of hybrid origen
Mon, 14 Jun 2010 11:38:09 PDT
On 14 Jun 2010, at 10:18, Donald Barnett wrote:

> Taxonomy question: if a species of plant is of hybrid origin and the plants are
> producing true uniform plants from seed production would it still be considered
> a hybrid or its own species? In the location of such hybrids they make up 95% or
> more of the plants in the area and one of the parents is no longer found there.
> Any help would be much appreciated.

Supposing the parents are Veriolitsis glomulama and Veriolitsis picasa, you 
would first refer to the hybrids as Veriolitsis glomulama × picasa. When a 
valid botanical description and name for this hybrid have been published, say, 
Veriolitsis × barnettiana, you could then refer to it by that name. It would be 
necessary to search the literature first, to be sure that no one has already 
assigned a name to this hybrid.

However, before you do that, you really need to publish a reasonably scholarly 
article demonstrating that the population you are interested in is truly of 
hybrid origin. In the absence of one of the putative parents, this may be 
trickier to do than you might think. The assignment of a name to the hybrid can 
then be relegated to an appendix.

It's important to note that the "×" is not actually part of the botanical name. 
The key elements in a botanical name are simply a Latinate generic epithet and 
a Latinate specific epithet.

Further, also remember that valid publication of a botanical name in no way 
obligates anyone to use that name. Botanical naming is a matter of opinion, not 
legislation. It is only over time that a name establishes itself in general 
use by consensus. The court of public opinion, you might say.

Incidentally, it's not at all clear that a hybrid taxon has to produce uniform 
plants from seed. The hybridity is simply a fact regarding the parentage.

Rodger Whitlock
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Maritime Zone 8, a cool Mediterranean climate
on beautiful Vancouver Island…

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