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A botanical name is a formal
scientific name In taxonomy Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classification. The term may also refer to a specific classification scheme. Originally used only ...
conforming to the ''
International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants The ''International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants'' (ICN) is the set of rules and recommendations dealing with the formal botanical name A botanical name is a formal scientific name Science (from the Latin Latin (, ...
'' (ICN) and, if it concerns a plant
cultigen A cultigen (from the Latin ''cultus'' – cultivated, and ''gens'' – kind) or cultivated plant is a plant that has been deliberately altered or selected by humans; it is the result of artificial selection. These plants, for the most part, have co ...
, the additional cultivar or
Group A group is a number A number is a mathematical object used to counting, count, measurement, measure, and nominal number, label. The original examples are the natural numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, and so forth. Numbers can be represented in language with ...
epithets must conform to the ''
International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants The ''International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants'' (ICNCP), also known as the Cultivated Plant Code, is a guide to the rules and regulations for naming cultigens, plants whose origin or selection is primarily due to intentional huma ...
'' (ICNCP). The code of nomenclature covers "all organisms traditionally treated as algae,
fungi A fungus (plural: fungi or funguses) is any member of the group of Eukaryote, eukaryotic organisms that includes microorganisms such as yeasts and Mold (fungus), molds, as well as the more familiar mushrooms. These organisms are classified as ...

fungi
, or plants, whether fossil or non-fossil, including blue-green algae (
Cyanobacteria Cyanobacteria (), also known as Cyanophyta, are a of that obtain energy via . The name ''cyanobacteria'' refers to their color (), giving them their other name, "blue-green algae", though modern botanists restrict the term ' to s and do not ...

Cyanobacteria
), chytrids,
oomycete Oomycota or oomycetes () form a distinct phylogenetic In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molec ...
s,
slime moulds Slime mold or slime mould is an informal name given to several kinds of unrelated eukaryotic Eukaryotes () are organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανισμός, ''organismos'') is any individual ...
and
photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to convert Conversion or convert may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media * Conversion (Doctor Who audio), "Conversion" (''Doctor Who'' audio), an episode of the audio drama ' ...

photosynthetic
protist A protist () is any (that is, an organism whose contain a ) that is not an , , or . While it is likely that protists share a (the ), the exclusion of other eukaryotes means that protists do not form a natural group, or . Therefore, some pro ...
s with their taxonomically related non-photosynthetic groups (but excluding
Microsporidia Microsporidia are a group of spore-forming unicellular A unicellular organism, also known as a single-celled organism, is an organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανισμός, ''organismos'') is any indi ...
)." The purpose of a formal name is to have a single name that is accepted and used worldwide for a particular plant or plant group. For example, the botanical name ''
Bellis perennis ''Bellis perennis'', the daisy, is a common European species of the family (biology), family Asteraceae, often considered the archetypal species of that name. To distinguish this species from other "daisies" it is sometimes qualified as common dai ...

Bellis perennis
'' denotes a plant species which is native to most of the countries of
Europe Europe is a which is also recognised as part of , located entirely in the and mostly in the . It comprises the westernmost peninsulas of the of Eurasia, it shares the continental landmass of with both and , and is bordered by the to the ...

Europe
and the
Middle East The Middle East ( ar, الشرق الأوسط, ISO 233 The international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm (social), norm or requirement for a repeatable technical task whi ...

Middle East
, where it has accumulated various names in many languages. Later, the plant was introduced worldwide, bringing it into contact with more languages. English names for this plant species include: daisy, English daisy, and lawn daisy. The cultivar ''Bellis perennis'' 'Aucubifolia' is a golden-variegated horticultural selection of this species.


Type specimens and circumscription

The botanical name itself is fixed by a
type Type may refer to: Science and technology Computing * Typing, producing text via a keyboard, typewriter, etc. * Data type, collection of values used for computations. * File type * TYPE (DOS command), a command to display contents of a file. * Type ...
, which is a particular specimen (or in some cases a group of specimens) of an organism to which the scientific name is formally attached. In other words, a type is an example that serves to anchor or centralize the defining features of that particular taxon. The usefulness of botanical names is limited by the fact that taxonomic groups are not fixed in size; a taxon may have a varying
circumscription Circumscription may refer to: *Circumscribed circle *Circumscription (logic) *Circumscription (taxonomy) *Circumscription theory, a theory about the origins of the political state in the history of human evolution proposed by the American anthropol ...
, depending on the
taxonomic system Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classification. The term may also refer to a specific classification scheme. Originally used only about biological ...
, thus, the group that a particular botanical name refers to can be quite small according to some people and quite big according to others. For example, the traditional view of the family
Malvaceae Malvaceae, or the mallows, is a family of flowering plants estimated to contain 244 genera with 4225 known species. Well-known members of economic importance include okra, cotton, Theobroma cacao, cacao and durian. There are also some genera conta ...

Malvaceae
has been expanded in some modern approaches to include what were formerly considered to be several closely related families. Some botanical names refer to groups that are very stable (for example
Equisetaceae Equisetaceae, sometimes called the horsetail family, is the only extant Extant is the opposite of the word extinct Extinction is the termination of a kind of organism or of a group of kinds (taxon), usually a species. The moment of extinctio ...
,
Magnoliaceae The Magnoliaceae () are a flowering plant Flowering plants include multiple members of the clade Angiospermae (), commonly called angiosperms. The term "angiosperm" is derived from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anyth ...
) while for other names a careful check is needed to see which circumscription is being used (for example
Fabaceae The Fabaceae or Leguminosae,International Code of Nomenc ...

Fabaceae
,
Amygdaloideae Amygdaloideae is a subfamily within the flowering plant Flowering plants include multiple members of the clade Angiospermae (), commonly called angiosperms. The term "angiosperm" is derived from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: ...

Amygdaloideae
, ''
Taraxacum officinale ''Taraxacum officinale'', the dandelion or common dandelion, is a flowering Herbaceous plant, herbaceous perennial plant of the Dandelion, dandelion genus in the family Asteraceae (syn. Compositae). The common dandelion is well known for its yell ...

Taraxacum officinale
'').


Forms of plant names

Depending on
rank Rank is the relative position, value, worth, complexity, power, importance, authority, level, etc. of a person or object within a ranking A ranking is a relationship between a set of items such that, for any two items, the first is either "ranked ...
, botanical names may be in one part (
genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure ...
and above), two parts (various situations below the rank of genus) or three parts (below the rank of species). The names of cultivated plants are not necessarily similar to the botanical names, since they may instead involve "unambiguous common names" of species or genera. Cultivated plant names may also have an extra component, bringing a maximum of four parts: ;in one part :
Plant Plants are predominantly photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to Energy transformation, convert light energy into chemical energy that, through cellular respiration, can later be released to fuel ...

Plant
ae (the plants) :
Marchantiophyta The Marchantiophyta () are a division of non-vascular plant, non-vascular embryophyte, land plants commonly referred to as hepatics or liverworts. Like mosses and hornworts, they have a gametophyte-dominant life cycle, in which cells of the plan ...
(the liverworts) :
Magnoliopsida Magnoliopsida is a valid botanical name for a class of flowering plant The flowering plants, also known as Angiospermae (), or Magnoliophyta (), are the most diverse group of Embryophyte, land plants, with 64 Order(biology), orders, 416 Family ...
(class including the family
Magnoliaceae The Magnoliaceae () are a flowering plant Flowering plants include multiple members of the clade Angiospermae (), commonly called angiosperms. The term "angiosperm" is derived from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anyth ...
) :
Liliidae {{Unreferenced, date=December 2009 Liliidae is a botanical name at the rank (botany), rank of subclass (biology), subclass. wiktionary: circumscription, Circumscription of the subclass will vary with the wiktionary:taxonomic system, taxonomic syst ...

Liliidae
(subclass including the family
Liliaceae The lily family In human society A society is a Social group, group of individuals involved in persistent Social relation, social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same spatial or social territory, typically subject ...

Liliaceae
) :
Pinophyta Conifers are a group of cone-bearing seed plants The spermatophytes (; ), also known as phanerogams (taxon Phanerogamae) or phaenogams (taxon Phaenogamae), comprise those plant Plants are predominantly photosynthetic eukaryotes of the Kin ...

Pinophyta
(the
conifers Conifers are a group of cone-bearing seed plants, a subset of gymnosperms. Scientifically, they make up the division Pinophyta (), also known as Coniferophyta () or Coniferae. The division contains a single extant class, Pinopsida. All exta ...

conifers
) :
Fagaceae Fagaceae is a family of flowering plant The flowering plants, also known as Angiospermae (), or Magnoliophyta (), are the most diverse group of Embryophyte, land plants, with 64 Order(biology), orders, 416 Family (biology), families, approximat ...
(the
beech Beech (''Fagus'') is a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of extant taxon, living and fossil organisms as well as Virus classification#ICTV classification, v ...

beech
family) :''
Betula A birch is a thin-leaved deciduous In the fields of horticulture Horticulture is the art of cultivating plants in gardens to produce food and medicinal ingredients, or for comfort and ornamental purposes. Horticulturists grow flowers, frui ...

Betula
'' (the
birch A birch is a thin-leaved deciduous hardwood tree of the genus ''Betula'' (), in the family Betulaceae, which also includes alders, hazels, and hornbeams. It is closely related to the beech-oak family Fagaceae. The genus ''Betula'' contains 30 to ...

birch
genus) ;in two parts :''
Acacia ''Acacia'', commonly known as the wattles or acacias, is a large genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of extant taxon, living and fossil organisms as well as V ...

Acacia
'' subg. ''Phyllodineae'' (the wattles) :'' lchemilla'' subsect. ''Heliodrosium'' :''
Berberis thunbergii ''Berberis thunbergii'', the Japanese barberry, Thunberg's barberry, or red barberry, is a species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit o ...

Berberis thunbergii
'' (Japanese barberry) a species name, i.e., a combination consisting of a genus name and one epithet :''
Syringa ''Syringa'' (lilac) is a genus of 12 currently recognized species of flowering plant, flowering woody plants in the olive family (Oleaceae), native to woodland and scrub from southeastern Europe to eastern Asia, and widely and commonly cultivate ...

Syringa
'' 'Charisma' – a cultivar within a genus :''Hydrangea'' Lacecap Group – a genus name and Group epithet :''Lilium'' Darkest Red Group – a genus name and Group epithet :''Paphiopedilum'' Greenteaicecreamandraspberries grex :snowdrop 'John Gray' – an unambiguous common name for the genus ''Galanthus'' and a cultivar epithet ;in three parts: :''
Calystegia sepium
Calystegia sepium
'' subsp. ''americana'' (American hedge bindweed), a combination consisting of a genus name and two epithets :''
Crataegus azarolus
Crataegus azarolus
'' var. ''pontica'' (a Mediterranean hawthorn) :''
Bellis perennis ''Bellis perennis'', the daisy, is a common European species of the family (biology), family Asteraceae, often considered the archetypal species of that name. To distinguish this species from other "daisies" it is sometimes qualified as common dai ...

Bellis perennis
'' 'Aucubifolia' – a cultivar :''Brassica oleracea'' Gemmifera Group – a species name and Group epithet ;in four parts: :''Scilla hispanica'' var. ''campanulata'' 'Rose Queen' – a cultivar within a botanical variety :apart from cultivars, the name of a plant can never have more than three parts.


Components of plant names

A botanical name in three parts, i.e., an
infraspecific name In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science Science (from the Latin word ''scientia'', meaning "knowledge") is a systematic enterprise that Scientific method, builds and Taxonomy (general), organizes kno ...
(a name for a taxon below the rank of species) needs a "connecting term" to indicate rank. In the ''Calystegia'' example above, this is "subsp.", for
subspecies In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactio ...
. In botany there are many ranks below that of species (in zoology there is only one such rank, subspecies, so that this "connecting term" is not used in zoology). A name of a "subdivision of a genus" also needs a connecting term (in the ''Acacia'' example above, this is "subg.",
subgenus In biology, a subgenus (plural: subgenera) is a taxonomic rank directly below genus. In the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, a subgeneric name can be used independently or included in a binomen, species name, in parentheses, placed b ...
). The connecting term is not part of the name itself. A taxon may be indicated by a listing in more than three parts: "''Saxifraga aizoon'' var. ''aizoon'' subvar. ''brevifolia'' f. ''multicaulis'' subf. ''surculosa'' Engl. & Irmsch." but this is a classification, not a formal botanical name. The botanical name is ''Saxifraga aizoon'' subf. ''surculosa'' Engl. & Irmsch. (''ICN'' Art 24: Ex 1). Generic, specific, and infraspecific botanical names are usually printed in
italics In typography File:metal movable type.jpg, 225px, Movable type being assembled on a composing stick using pieces that are stored in the type case shown below it Typography is the art and technique of typesetting, arranging type to make wri ...
. The example set by the ''ICN'' is to italicize all botanical names, including those above genus, though the ''ICN'' preface states: "The ''Code'' sets no binding standard in this respect, as typography is a matter of editorial style and tradition not of nomenclature". Most peer-reviewed scientific botanical publications do not italicize names above the rank of genus, and non-botanical scientific publications do not, which is in keeping with two of the three other kinds of
scientific name In taxonomy Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classification. The term may also refer to a specific classification scheme. Originally used only ...
:
zoological Zoology ()The pronunciation of zoology as is typically regarded as nonstandard, though it is not uncommon. is the branch of biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical s ...
and
bacterial Bacteria (; common noun bacteria, singular bacterium) are a type of biological cell. They constitute a large domain of prokaryotic microorganism A microorganism, or microbe,, ''mikros'', "small") and ''organism In biology, an ...
( viral names above genus are italicized, a new policy adopted in the early 1990s).


Binary name

For botanical nomenclature, the ''ICN'' prescribes a two-part name or binary name for any taxon below the
rank Rank is the relative position, value, worth, complexity, power, importance, authority, level, etc. of a person or object within a ranking A ranking is a relationship between a set of items such that, for any two items, the first is either "ranked ...
of genus down to, and including the rank of species. Taxa below the rank of species get a three part (
infraspecific name In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science Science (from the Latin word ''scientia'', meaning "knowledge") is a systematic enterprise that Scientific method, builds and Taxonomy (general), organizes kno ...
). A binary name consists of the name of a
genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure ...
and an epithet. * In the case of a species this is a specific epithet: :''
Bellis perennis ''Bellis perennis'', the daisy, is a common European species of the family (biology), family Asteraceae, often considered the archetypal species of that name. To distinguish this species from other "daisies" it is sometimes qualified as common dai ...

Bellis perennis
'' is the name of a species, in which ''perennis'' is the specific epithet. There is no connecting term involved, to indicate the rank. * In the case of a subdivision of a genus (subgenus, section, subsection, series, subseries, etc.) the name consists of the name of a genus and a subdivisional epithet. A connecting term should be placed before the subdivisional epithet to indicate the rank: :''Paraserianthes'' sect. ''Falcataria''


In cultivated plants

In the case of cultivated plants, there is an additional epithet which is an often non-Latin part, not written in italics. For cultivars, it is always given in single quotation marks. The cultivar, Group, or grex epithet may follow either the botanical name of the species, or the name of the genus only, or the unambiguous common name of the genus or species. The generic name, followed by a cultivar name, is often used when the parentage of a particular hybrid cultivar is not relevant in the context, or is uncertain.


See also

(specific to botany) *
Author citation (botany) In botanical nomenclature Botanical nomenclature is the formal, scientific naming of plants. It is related to, but distinct from taxonomy Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the pri ...
*
Botanical nomenclature Botanical nomenclature is the formal, scientific naming of plants. It is related to, but distinct from taxonomy Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such ...
*
Correct name (botany) In botany, the correct name according to the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants (ICN) is the one and only botanical name that is to be used for a particular taxon, when that taxon has a particular Circumscription (taxono ...
*
Hybrid name (botany) In botanical nomenclature Botanical nomenclature is the formal, scientific naming of plants. It is related to, but distinct from taxonomy Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the pri ...
*
International Association for Plant Taxonomy The International Association for Plant Taxonomy (IAPT) is an organization established to promote an understanding of plant Plants are predominantly photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to Ener ...
*
International Plant Names Index The International Plant Names Index (IPNI) describes itself as "a database In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorith ...
*
The Plant List The Plant List is a list of botanical name A botanical name is a formal scientific name Science (from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. La ...
*
Validly published name (botany) In botanical nomenclature, a validly published name is a name that meets the requirements in the ''International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants'' for valid publication. Valid publication of a name represents the minimum requirem ...
*
World Checklist of Selected Plant Families The World Checklist of Selected Plant Families (usually abbreviated to WCSP) is an "international collaborative programme that provides the latest peer reviewed and published opinions on the accepted scientific names and synonyms of selected plan ...
(more general) *
Glossary of scientific naming This is a list of terms and symbols used in scientific names for organisms, and in describing the names. For proper parts of the names themselves, see List of Latin and Greek words commonly used in systematic names. Note that many of the abbreviati ...
*
Biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactions, Physiology, physiological mecha ...
*
Binomial nomenclature In taxonomy Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classification. The term may also refer to a specific classification scheme. Originally used only ...
*
Nomenclature codes Nomenclature codes or codes of nomenclature are the various rulebooks that govern biological taxonomic Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classificat ...
*
Open nomenclature Open nomenclature is a vocabulary of partly informal terms and signs in which a taxonomist In biology, taxonomy () is the scientific study of naming, defining (Circumscription (taxonomy), circumscribing) and classifying groups of biological ...
* Plant epithet *
Taxonomy Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classification. The term may also refer to a specific classification scheme. Originally used only about biological ...
*
Undescribed species In taxonomy, an undescribed taxon is a taxon In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular i ...


References


Bibliography

*


External links

* Adopted by the
International Union of Biological Sciences The International Union of Biological Sciences (IUBS) is a non-profit organization A nonprofit organization (NPO), also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonprofit institution, is a legal entity organized and operat ...
International Commission for the Nomenclature of Cultivated Plants.
Plant botanical definition list
Retrieved 12 November 2016. {{Botany Name Plant taxonomy