7 Interesting Herbarium Specimens and other historical records

Interesting Herbarium specimens and other historical records.

Pedicellated and Sessile Blossoms
Figure 1 Fig. 1: G. D. Ehret's 1748 illustration of 'Lilio narcissus Africanus' Miller which is obviously a form of Crinum scabrum. Linnaeus identified it as a questionable Amaryllis zeylanica Beta in his Species plantarum editions I and II, and referenced it from 'Ehret Pict. 5, f. 2'. Ehret often improved upon his drawings, so imperfections or abnormalities occasionally appear. His plate of Amaryllis belladonna in the 'Herbal of Count Palatine' is a prize example.
Figure 2 Fig. 2: The original specimen of Genus Crinum Linn. in Hortus Siccus Cliffortianus 127.1. This is the Crinum americanum Linn. lectotype specimen. Note the drip-tips on the tepal apices as cited by Linnaeus in Species plantarum I: 292, 1753. Few, if any past botanists ever noted this distinctive character-essentalis identification-feature cited by Linnaeus.
Figure 3 Fig. 3: The original long overlooked Wm. Aiton 1785 type specimen of Amaryllis ornata L. f. in Aiton's Hort. Kew II: 226, 1811. Also Syn. Crinum broussonetii (Redout‚) Herbert in Bot. Mag. t.2121, 1820. And finally syn. Crinum ornatum (Aiton) Bury sensu F. N. Hepper. (Note. There is obviously a major genetic distinction between Aiton's above two-flowered specimen and Mrs. Bury's multiflowered specimen). Linnaeus often broad interpretation of a species commonly resulted in lumping remotely related or distinct plants. Banks, Aiton, and many others in the 1785-1820 period were strict Linnaean followers, thus the A. ornata confusion.
Figure 4 Fig. 4: Misidentified as the type specimen of Crinum distichum Herbert sensu Afzelius, now British Museum specimen #1. The original title across base of sheet was: "Amaryllis ornata Linn. fil. Cape Coast Lily form" [Ghana]. The specimen was next identified as a Crinum broussonetii Herbert, also as Amaryllis ornata var. uni-pluriflora Ker-Gawler in Bot. Mag. t.2121, 1810 [Use fig. only, exclude all names and synonyms in this last reference.] The foliage is not rigid enough to be a C. distichum. The true identity remains a question.
Figure 5 Fig. 5: Crinum foliis carinatis in Fl. zeyl. 127., Linnaeus' original C. asiaticum.

The above etching in Hermann's original sketch in his Horti acad., which Linnaeus documented into his Flora zeylanicus: 127, 1747, as C. asiaticum, his original type species. This bulb is now C. defixum Ker-Gawler. The error developed since K.-G. used an erroneous Linnaeus reference from Species plantarum II, but not present in Ed. I.

Figure 6 Fig. 6: Umbellar structure and flowering order of C. moorei and C. asiaticum by Muller-Doblies, with permission.

[Top] Double spiral arrangement of a C. asiaticum's umbel. The pedicellated umbels are spiral cymes which have coiled up and thus flower sequentially.

[Bottom] Single spiral arrangement of C. moorei umbel.

Note, sessile flowered Crinum have group arrangements for the buds where the bud-groups flower semi-sequentially. There is a distinct evolutionary separation between the two types.

According to Muller-Doblies and G. Ledyard Stebbins the pedicellated umbels like C. asiaticum and C. moorei are composed of cymes which originally resembled those of Gladiolus. These had coiled up to form a helicoid cyme, a 'determinate' type of umbel where the single pedicellated blossoms flower sequentially. In contrast, the sessile flowered umbels display group flowering. These umbels were derived from 'indeterminate' compound racimes where each distinctive bud group flowers sequentially. As noted by Herbert, the sessile flowered Crinum are essentially tropical in habitat while the pedicellated are subtropical. There is a distinctive evolutionary separation here which becomes evident on ones attempted selfing of interspecific hybrids like C. 'Ellen Bosanquet' or C. x herbertii where one parent is sessile and the other pedicellated.