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Proceedings of the International Plant Propagator's Society

Vol. 33


Ruth Kvaalen

pp: 473-479

To review how plant names are formulated, what makes a name legitimate, and why and how to register a cultivar name, let us follow an example. You are on a fishing trip. A storm comes up, the boat sinks, but you make it safely to a deserted island where there is no evidence that man has ever set foot before. While awaiting rescue, you discover some small trees that look very similar to Hibiscus syriacus, but the flowers and growth habit are different from any hibiscus that you know. Some specimens of this plant bear yellow flowers: others have finished flowering and have set seed. You gather seeds and specimens and, when rescued, you take your plant specimens with you.

Once safely at home, you try to determine the identity of the mystery plant by using keys in books such as Rehder's Manual of Cultivated Trees and Shrubs, but your specimens just do not fit the keys or descriptions. Having exhausted your own resources to identify the plant, you send it to a taxonomist at a local

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