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  Alocaisa gageana
From: "Barbara" <hcward416 at comcast.net> on 2009.08.06 at 21:27:37(19647)

I purchased a plant labeled as Alocasia gageana aurea variegata but think I read somewhere that aurea is not the proper name. I did a search on the Aroidean but did not find the correct name. I am a novice but would like to make sure the names are correct. I would appreciate any help.




From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.08.09 at 01:58:01(19667)

Thiswill be almost certainly Alocasia macrorrhizos in one of its numerous colourforms. Alocasia gageana was described from northern Burma and is an nom. dub.




From: "Christopher Rogers" <CRogers at ecoanalysts.com> on 2009.08.09 at 19:39:55(19672)
Howdy, Pete!

I thought I had a handle on the large green, entire leaf margin Alocasia. My understanding was that A. gageana had a green erect spathe, leaf sinus reaching petiole; A. odora has a yellow erect spathe, and; A. macrorhiza had a reflexed yellow spathe, with the leaf sinus not reaching the petiole. I am not sure how A. robusta is separated out. So, I am surprised to hear that A. gageana is a nomen dubium. Can you help me out on separating these beasts?


From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.08.10 at 06:52:58(19676)
Hi Christopher,

These trans-Himalayan large-leaved Alocasia are taxonomic beasts! I’ve
recently tackled the northern Thai species and this is the current status
for those that I investigated.

What you describe as gageana is almost certainly odora; also it is very
likely that gageana is a syn. of odora BUT the type (of gageana) is missing
(presumed desctroyed) from Berlin and Engler’s description is too incompl ete
to pin the name.

What you have as odora (yellow spathe) is definitely A. navicularis.

Alocasia macrorrhizos is almost certainly OK, but spathe colour is very
variable, from white, pinkish, purplish, and ‘yellow’ (actually somewhat

All of these species produce pairs of inflorescences arising in the leaf
axil (actually terminal on a branching module and then displaced by a new
leaf and thus appearing axillary.

Other names for the transhimalaya in this ‘macrorrhizos/odora’ complex are:

Alocasia cadieri Chantrier, Rev. Hort. 26: 326 (1939)
Alocasia cochinchensis, Pierre ex Engl. & K.Krause Pflanzenr., IV, 23E: 103
Alocasia decipiens Schott, Bonplandia (Hannover) 7: 28 (1859)
Alocasia decumbens Buchet, Bull. Mus. Natl. Hist. Nat., II, 11: 417 (1939)
Alocasia evrardii Gagnep., Fl. Indo-Chine 6: 1150 (1942)
Alocasia fallax Schott, Bonplandia (Hannover) 7: 28 (1859)
Alocasia fornicata (Roxb.) Schott, Oesterr. Bot. Wochenbl. 4: 410 (1854)
Alocasia grandis Clemenc., Rev. Hort. 1868: 380 (1868)
Alocasia grata Prain ex Engl. & Krause, Pflanzenr., IV, 23E: 93 (1920)
Alocasia hainanensis K.Krause, Pflanzenr., IV, 23E: 91 (1920)
Alocasia hainanica N.E.Br., J. Linn. Soc., Bot. 36: 183 (1903)
Alocasia lecomtei Engl., Pflanzenr., IV, 23E: 90 (1920)
Alocasia liervalii Hérincq, Hort. Franc.: 243 (1869)
Alocasia longifolia Engl. & K.Krause, Pflanzenr., IV, 23E: 103 (1920)
Alocasia montana (Roxb.) Schott, Oesterr. Bot. Wochenbl. 4: 410 (1854) -
almost certainly the correct name for A. hynosa
Alocasia putii Gagnep., Fl. Indo-Chine 6: 1150 (1942)
Alocasia tonkinensis Engl., Pflanzenr., IV, 23E: 91 (1920)

A LOT to do!

Alocasia robusta produces clusters of up to 20 inflorescences in the
‘middle’ of the plant, with the entire cluster then ‘pierced’ by th e newly
emerging leaf, and is not part of the above complex, being closest to A.
puber, A. sarawakensis, etc.



From: Eric Schmidt <leu242 at yahoo.com> on 2009.08.10 at 14:12:59(19682)
So Alocasia gageana is not a valid species ? What is the small, dwarf form called A. gageana here in the nursery trade. Sometimes it is sold as Alocasia 'California'? Is this a form or cultivar of A. macrorrhizos or A. odora ?



Eric Schmidt

From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.08.11 at 09:33:23(19689)

Alocasia gageana Engler is a valid speces in that it is a validly
published name but because the type is missing (presumed destroyed in
Berlin during WWII, we're simply not sure WHAT it is except that
anything in cultivation with this name attached is 99.9% certain NOT
to be A. gagenana sensu Engler.


From: "Christopher Rogers" <crogers at ecoanalysts.com> on 2009.08.11 at 17:58:27(19696)

Thanks, Peter! So, obviously I had a few things confused. I am glad to know you are working on the group, and I hope that I can get a reprint when you publish.

You said that these plants send up a pair of inflorescences. My A. odora and my A. macrorrhizos have sent up single inflorescences, paired and sometimes three inflorescences. Am I seeing something different, or could this be ecophenotypic variation?

I really enjoy the genus Alocasia, and I do want to learn all I can about the taxonomy. I appreciate your help, and if you ever need any help with freshwater crustacean taxonomy, let me know. I be happy to return the favor!

Thanks for the help!




From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.08.12 at 09:07:10(19698)
The Alocasia account for the Flora of Thailand will be in press by year end and should be published sometime first quarter 2010. There is a precursor paper: A review of Alocasia (Araceae: Colocasieae) for Thailand including a novel species and new species’ records from S.W. Thailand. Thai For. Bull. (Bot.) 36: 1 – 17 (2008) but unfortunately I have no reprints as yet.

I should have said that the ‘pair’ of inflorescences is an average; the important thing is actually the displacement, giving the inflorescence modules an leaf-axillary appearance.

Thanks for the offer of assistance with our freshwater crustacean queries; what we really need at the moment is a coleopteran taxonomist to help us with naming the beetles that we are trying to identify!

Very best




From: "Christopher Rogers" <crogers at ecoanalysts.com> on 2009.08.12 at 21:16:48(19710)
Okay, the axillary aspect makes far more sense, and fits with what I have growing and what I have seen in SE Asia.

I will see what I can find out for you on the beetles . . .




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