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  Alocasia of Thailand
From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.08.27 at 03:14:34(19859)
(File Type Not Recognized: attachments/090903215315-1.pdf)

Dear All,

For anyone interested there is attached to this a recentpaper on the Alocasia in Thailand, including the description of alarge-growing species from the Thai/Cambodian border.

Peter

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From: STARSELL at aol.com on 2009.08.29 at 10:48:04(19865)
Dear Peter,

Thank you so much for posting this paper.

I just googled that exact subject yesterday !

Now, to dive into that paper...

Alison

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From: "Christopher Rogers" <crogers at ecoanalysts.com> on 2009.08.30 at 12:17:25(19872)
Thank you very much, Pete!!!!

D. Christopher Rogers

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From: "Famille FERRY" <jpcferry2 at wanadoo.fr> on 2009.08.31 at 08:51:56(19876)
Dear Peter,

Thank you for this manuscript. He will be very useful for me .

Best regards ,

Geneviève

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From: Tony Avent <tony at plantdelights.com> on 2009.09.04 at 09:44:50(19924)
Pete:

I was just reading over your fascinating paper on Alocasia in Thailand
about both Alocasia cucullata and A. macrorrhizos not being valid
species. If this is the case and they are old cultigens, why would
they not be properly written a Alocasia x macrorrhizos and Alocasia x
cucullata with an appropriate cultivar name for the clone in commerce?

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From: "Marek Argent" <abri1973 at wp.pl> on 2009.09.04 at 12:24:18(19926)
Hello,

Is this document available anywhere on the web?

Marek

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From: ExoticRainforest <Steve at ExoticRainforest.com> on 2009.09.04 at 13:04:27(19928)
I've got it too Tony. I'm attachingthe link to the PDF for anyone that wants to read it but may havemissed Pete's original post.

Be sure and look at the first page index for Pete's work: A reviewof Alocasia (Araceae Colocasieae) for Thailand including a novelspecies and new species records from South-West Thailand

http://www.dnp.go.th/botany/PDF/publications/TFB36.pdf

Steve

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From: Albert M Huntington <amh at ieee.org> on 2009.09.04 at 13:29:25(19931)
Marek,

In addition to Steve Lucas' link:
The document is linked from the message stored in the IAS Aroid-l archives at http://www.aroid.org/aroidl-archive/

Peter has also graciously given us permission to add it to the genera page for Alocasia at
http://www.aroid.org/genera/generapage.php?genus=alocasia

In short, it's everywhere. :)

--Albert

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From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.09.04 at 16:08:49(19934)
Tony:

The x would indicate that they are stabilized hybrid species (nothospecies)
as, for example, the situation with Cryptocoryne x purpurea (a nothospecies
resulting from the stabilization of the naturally occurring hybrid C.
cordata x C. griffithii) this is not the case. Alistair and are both pretty
much convinced that A. cucullata and A. macrorrhizos are stabilied cultigens
(cultons) of A. odora. In cultivation thus they COULD be cited a A.
'Macrorrhizos' and A. 'Cucullata', but that would then lead to problems with
cultons of these. Best to leave the situation as is.

Cheers

Pete

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From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.09.04 at 16:11:22(19935)
Hi,

I attached it to an email posted on aroid-l a week or two back

Alternatively go to:
http://www.dnp.go.th/Botany/Botany_Eng/ThaiForestBulletin/Thai%20Forest%20Bu
lletin_Eng36.html

Download the volume and then extract the pages using a pdf editor such as
Nitro.

Very best

Peter

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From: Tony Avent <tony at plantdelights.com> on 2009.09.05 at 06:29:01(19940)
Pete:

I thought it was botanists/taxonomists who like nice neat nomenclatural
packages. These cultons sound instead like a botanical grab bag into
which all of the unsorted material is dumped. If they are indeed
selections of A. odora, then they certainly need cultivar names with A.
odora as a species. If, as Lari Ann suggests, they are cultivars which
cannot be assigned to a particular species, but are old hybrid groups or
species whose origins have been obscured, they still need a cultivar
name. Newly selected clones from them would then also need cultivar
names. This actually would make these fit much better into neat
nomenclatural packages. We would then know which new cultivar came from
which old cultivar of say, A. macrorrhizos. I tend to like the analysis
from plant breeders and can attest that outside of DNA, this is one of
the best ways to tell what is related to what. That being said, has
anyone done DNA analysis on this group?

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From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.09.05 at 20:18:32(19944)
Tony:

While we certainly like neat packages, those of us working in mega-rich
places are under no illusions that the species often haven't read the same
rule books!

Certainly 'species' such as A. macrorrizos and A. cucullata bend the
boundaries a lot. What is of course interesting is that A. macrorrhizos
(notwithstanding its doubtful 'pure' species status) is definitely related
(and here we are talking molecularly) to some unquestionably 'good' species,
such as A. portei and A. flabellifer, which poses even more difficulties. It
is also problematic to lalk about utilization of cultivars, especially those
that are selections of what may themselves be cultivars, albeit so
long-standing that they have effectively stabilized and function as species,
even to the extent that they have lost the ability to hybridize with other
elements of what was once a single gene pool.

Forgive me if I appear to be avoiding answering your suggestion. But the
fact is that I am not sure HOW to answer. The bottom line is that, at
present, we can only be sure that A. macrorrhizos and A. cucculata are NEVER
found away from human disturbance in 'habitat' and furthermore, away from
the attention of horticulturists are remarkable morphologically stable.

As a final thought on this, it is also important to remember that species
framework, and the interspecific crossing is often in nature not just a
matter of 'incompatibility'. Distribution, flowering time even down to the
level of time of day, and how these barriers function to manage
pollinators, or select for a particular pollinator guild, are as much, if
not more, a barrier than simple unrelatedness. If ever an example was needed
of the role of pollinator guild niche selection, the orchids of the
Stanhopineae contain numerous examples.

Cheers

Pete

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From: "Christopher Rogers" <CRogers at ecoanalysts.com> on 2009.09.06 at 12:44:07(19948)
Howdy,

I would also add that there is probably no REAL evidence that these plants are not species. Peter may have evidence against my arguments below. (If so, I hope he tells me). First off, they may be extinct in wild, or just not yet found in the wild.

Secondly, their natural habitat may have been the same natural habitat for human habitation. For example in California, there are fairy shrimp species found nearly always where there is human habitation. However, human habitation and the seasonal wetlands the shrimp live in both occur on flat ground, above the flood areas. Also the human habitation has spread so very much, that it is nearly impossible to find flat land above the flood zones that does not have Humans.

Thirdly, these may be plants that adapted to human habitation areas naturally, due to their ability to handle certain levels of disturbance.

So, speaking as a professional taxonomist who runs into these amazing puzzles from time to time, there are often many explanations to taxonomic and evolutionary problems. Plus, I think the only real difference between a cultivar and a species is natural selection verses artificial selection.

Happy days,

Christopher

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From: Peter Boyce <phymatarum at googlemail.com> on 2009.09.06 at 23:38:47(19951)
HiChristopher,

Well,of course, this all boils down to just what ARE species... and for that matterwhat is REAL evidence??

Leavingthe first of these for better minds then ours, real evidence today alwaysincludes a considerable lump of molecular data (the testability criterion thatmakes science science rather than just informed guesswork), but alltaxonomists and systematists who do fieldwork, especially those fortunate to beworking in some of the so-called ‘hot-spots’ know that mere comparisonof the coding of amino acid bases into proteins is only a part, possible only atiny part, of the story, just in the same way that humanness is based on aconsiderable number of virtually unquantifiable ‘characters’ that atpresent no amount of high-tech wizardry is able to measure. All we can say isthat the considerable fieldwork that has been undertaken in the past 2centuries in the ‘habitat’ of A. macrorrhizos and A. cucullata hasfailed to produce one even one individual that was not in association withhuman disturbance and that for the moment the matter rests with the evidentcaveat that lack of evidence is not the same as no evidence.

Cheers

Peter

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From: Tony Avent <tony at plantdelights.com> on 2009.09.07 at 15:09:11(19961)
Pete:

Thank you for the enlightening clarification. I am now more confusedthat ever, but on a higher level and about different things.

In some ways we are more confused than ever, but we feel that we areconfused on a higher level and about more important things.

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From: "Christopher Rogers" <crogers at ecoanalysts.com> on 2009.09.08 at 07:37:53(19968)
Good morning, Peter!

That was in part the point I wanted to make, but never actually got around
to it. Too much field work at the moment (as if there can ever be too much
field work). Your point is equally important that molecular techniques is
only one tool in the tool box, and it even goes awry at times. Genes won't
amplify, viruses mix up the genes, amplification alters the genes, different
genes giving different data . . . sigh.

We so often only get a part of the picture that no real conclusion can be
reached. Another important point is that the factors delimiting one taxon
are not necessarily applicable to any other taxon; families, genera and
species are not necessarily equal. Each was formed by different selective
pressures at different times in different ways.

With the range of possible explanations and unanswered questions, I have no
problem leaving those two plants as "species" until more evidence one way or
another rolls in.

Happy days!

Christopher

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