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Cultivated plant taxonomy The word cultivar originated from the need to distinguish between wild plants and those with characteristics that arose in cultivation, presently denominated cultigens. Botanical historian Alan Morton noted that Theophrastus in his Historia Plantarum Enquiry into Plants "had an inkling of the limits of culturally induced phenotypic changes and of the importance of genetic constitution" Historia Plantarum, Book 3, 2, 2 and Causa Plantarum, Book 1, 9, 3.
In Species Plantarum, Linnaeus enumerated all plants known to him, either directly or from his extensive reading. Most of the varieties that Linnaeus enumerated were of "garden" origin rather than being wild plants.
In the nineteenth century many "garden-derived" plants were given horticultural names, sometimes in Latin and sometimes in a vernacular language.
From circa the s, cultivated plants in Europe were recognised in the Scandinavian, Germanic, and Slavic literature as stamm or sorte,  but these words could not be used internationally because, by international agreement, any new denominations had to be in Latin.
The cultigen is a species, or its equivalent, that has appeared under domestication — the plant is cultigenous. I now propose another name, cultivar, for a botanical variety, or for a race subordinate to species, that has originated under cultivation; it is not necessarily, however, referable to a recognized botanical species.
It is essentially the equivalent of the botanical variety except in respect to its origin. Bailey created the word cultivar, which is generally assumed to be a portmanteau of cultivated and variety.
Bailey never explicitly stated the etymology of cultivar, and it has been suggested that it is instead a contraction of cultigen and variety, which seems correct.
Cultigen Bread wheat, Triticum aestivumis considered a cultigen, and is a distinct species from other wheats according to the biological species concept. Many different cultivars have been created within this cultigen. Many other cultigens are not considered to be distinct species, and can be denominated otherwise.
The words cultigen and cultivar may be confused with each other.
A cultigen is any plant that is deliberately selected for or altered in cultivation, as opposed to an indigen ; the Cultivated Plant Code states that cultigens are "maintained as recognisable entities solely by continued propagation".
Therefore, all cultivars are cultigensbecause they originate in cultivation, but not all cultigens are cultivars, because some cultigens have not been formally distinguished and denominated as cultivars. Algavar[ edit ] The word algavar is a portmanteau of cultivar and algaereferring to specific strains of algae with desirable traits that have been created and maintained through engineered propagation.
Aubrey Davis,  the term is used in the microalgae cultivation industry, a field in which other non-standard terms eg.
The basic category of cultivated plants whose nomenclature is governed by this Code is the cultivar. This is the sense of cultivar that is most generally understood and which is used as a general definition. The Cultivated Plant Code emphasizes that different cultivated plants may be accepted as different cultivars, even if they have the same genome, while cultivated plants with different genomes may be regarded as the same cultivar.
The production of cultivars generally entails considerable human involvement although in a few cases it may be as little as simply selecting variation from plants growing in the wild whether by collecting growing tissue to propagate from or by gathering seed. Named cultivars of Hosta and Hemerocallis plants are cultivars produced by micropropagation or division.Chris, this is a very common questions.
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