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Thread: South African Droserae

  1. #1

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    Is anyone currently growing any of these plants?

    admirabilis
    aliciae "Plains form"
    coccicaulis
    curviscapa
    esterhuyseniae
    jacobii
    sp. Rhodesia
    sp. malwai
    sp. South Africa

    Also the legitimate species: affinis, alba, burkeana, cuneifolia, galabripes, hilaris, pillosa, trinervia, or venusta?

    I would love to see a discussion of these plants happen, so c'mon all you South African growers, lets get it going!
    "Grow More, Share More"

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    I read a posting on another sight that some one had decided to pin fake names on some of the plants he sold, to improve sales causing kaos in the taxonomy of these drosera? some of the above list where some of the names he had used, did some one acutally do that?does any body know about this?
    [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/mad.gif[/img]

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    noah's Avatar
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    Yes jodajo, this seems to happen a lot, about 90 % of the available seed of these species ends up being spatulata or some other similar "weed". Which is sad, because people get their hopes up only to have them smashed because someone wants to get an extra few bucks.

    Tamlin, you already know but for everyone else I grow affinis and glabripes and possibly sp. rhodesia (also called madagascariensis ssp. rhodesia??).

    I would like to see some discussion among s.a. drosera growers, we need to share information if we want to keep these rarer plants alive and growing.

    cheers,

    noah

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    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    I have coccicaulis..

    At least that is what it is called. From Triffid Park. I am probably one of the worst at IDing Drosera but it seems to fit the description. My understanding is that there is question that it is even a valid species by some people..
    Anyway, here is a picture of the coccicaulis



    I also have trinervia, glabripes.. jacoby (I think)
    Many of these I am trying for the first time so have alot to learn.
    Tony



    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

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    How difficult is it to grow the majority of the south african sundews? would they be easily suited to the cetral to south florida enviroment or would they require special care. I did some reading tonight on some of the names tamlin put up but but other than that these are new to me.I will reserch them further in the next while, but any info. that you could provide for futer reference , or that would help me reaserch these more adequately would be great. i know that they seed copiously and some require dry dormancy, do all of them have these characteristics or just some?
    Thanks JOEL

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    pthiel's Avatar
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    William,

    I have Drosera labelled:
    sp. Rhodesia
    sp. South Africa
    coccicaulis
    burkeana

    that came from pretty reliable sources. I can attempt to get a camera and get photos or are you looking for seed?

    Cheers

  7. #7

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    I brought this up because Robert Gibson and I have been having some good discussion on this topic. For anyone that doesn't know, Robert is a world authority on Droseracae currently working on his PhD.

    First off, as regards to these "bogus" species we have to draw a line between neat looking plants that are fun to grow vs. legitimately published species which have been reviewed by the International Congress of Botanical Nomenclature (ICBN). The first names listed are all "bogus" species. This means that there is no published protologue: which is the description of the plant in Latin published in a Journal of some sort, nor has there been a herborized specimen placed in an appropriate botanical institution. Both steps are necessary to assign legitimate species rank. The problem with names like this is there is no central authority to consult, no type specimen to look at, so the names can mean anything.

    For example, in my conversation with Robert, he mentioned that the coccicaulis he has seen in Australia more resembles what he has seen called venusta here in the states. Tony's plant of coccicaulis looks just like mine: but when Robert and I speak of this, how do I know the plant he has in mind looks like our coccicaulis? Are Tony and I really growing venusta then? Perhaps by comparing photos a consensus could be reached, but what of plants so named that neither of us cultivate? How can we ever determine if we are referring to the same discreet form? We can't. This is why bogus names are so frustrating, and why they are not allowed by taxonomists. It is also why 2 growers with the same named plants often have very different appearing plants.

    If you type in Drosera esterhuyseniae in the ICPS databank, you will see the history of the naming and renaming of this plant. I have spoken with many growers who strongly feel this is a species on it's own, but again, opinions based on small samples don't have much weight. Genetics, metric evaluation and statistics do.

    Jodajo mentions companies pinning these names on plants to beef up their sales catalog. This may occasionally be true, but there are other factors to consider. There is a process of speciation going on with the South African species, and the lines between species blurr. Natalensis is very variable across its range: the lamina can be wedge shaped to orbicular spatulate, the rosettes depressed or even ascending. To look at them, you would doubt that they were the same specie at all. Add to this the fact that natalensis and aliciae intergrade into each other where their range overlaps, and you can begin to see the huge taxonomic problems this complex presents. Aliciae from different populations usually presents different forms. Some of these forms were described and published, but their rank was disputed and here is why:

    To assign species status to coccicaulis for example would open the door for a huge expansion in the number of species assigned to South Africa, based on small observational differences in form. With so much variation within the complex, this is not acceptable, and further work, possiblyin genetics will have to serve to determine species rank. This is the sort of work Vitor Fernandes Oliveira de Miranda is doing in Brazil.

    I hope this explains somewhat why these plants have not been formally classified. However, this does not affect the fact that their forms are of interest to collectors, and this is why the different nurseries and private collectors try maintain these names: they are the only thing that implies distinguishment from other forms. We want to distinguish the beautiful large all red "jacobii" from the common "venusta", and keep it in cultivation, not let it sink into the obscurity of the natalensis complex! Sadly, the names listed mean very little without the location and collection data of the population the plant came from. As I said, the seed could be anything, and from anywhere. Mistakes In ID can happen very easily, and not necessairily by unethical intent. Those without taxonomic bent usually accept a plant or seed as it is given to them, and share it many times never knowing that the material was not bona fide to begin with. Nurseries who acquire seed donated to seed banks by well intentioned but deluded growers often begin to market the material under the name it was acquired. Material like sp. Auyan Tepui (at least for me!!&#33[img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif[/img] turned out to be spatulata, just as Noah said. This species should be renamed Drosera dissapointum!

    Since these plants remain in circulation, so how can we determine what anyone really has under the name? This is where Pete Thiel's proposed photo data base could come in handy. If everyone could post what they had growing under a particular name, there might be a little clarification through observational consensus: if most of the photos looked alike and one didn't, it would be reasonable to exclude that single different plant, and accept the accurancy of the many. Such material might be occasionally reviewed by some very experienced experts if it was centrally available.

    With the South Africans in particular, the classification of the species is very much opinion. Opinion backed by good field study, carries more weight than opinions generated from viewing only a few isolated members of a population. The greater the number examined, the more we will learn.

    Jodajo asks about the cultural requirements. How about it? How do you grow your South Africans? Have you tried different temp. ranges and substrate? I am new to many of these plants too. Tony, how is galabripes doing for you?

    Noah, what form does your sp. Rhodesia take.

    Can either of you post a photo?

    Thanks for the response, and for the chance to share my thoughts. I always wondered why coccicaulis wasn't considered legit, so my conversation with Robert was very illuminating, I hope it helps shed some light into the muddy waters of misidentity.



    "Grow More, Share More"

  8. #8
    gardenofeden's Avatar
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    tony
    your coccicaulis looks very much like venusta I grow.
    venusta
    Stephen
    Sarracenia rosea?...don't be ridiculous!

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