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LUISEANIA OR ALMONDS OR DRAINING?
In the publication about the flowering Mikhailovsky Garden, we already mentioned this beautiful plant. Among gardeners, it is usually referred to as sakura. This is a group of spring flowering plants from the Rosaceae family. This includes plants from the genus: cherry, plum, peach, almond and louisania. Terry varieties of these plants look especially magnificent, in Latin – “f. Plena”, that is, terry form.
In 1855, one of these plants with pale pink terry flowers was brought from China by an English botanist and gardener Robert Fortune. So in Europe, another East Asian flowering shrub appeared. For gardeners in Europe, it did not matter which genus this plant belongs to. The main thing is that it blooms beautifully in a period when there are still few flowering shrubs. But the inquiring minds of European naturalists diligently sought the place of this plant in a single classification system of the plant world.
The first name was proposed by the English botanist John Lindley in 1857. He named this plant – Prunus triloba Lindl. (three-blade plum). It was called a three-blade, because there are three distinct blades along the edge of the sheet. In 1862, the French botanist Eli-Abel Carrier proposed moving this plant to the genus Almonds. In his opinion, the bush should be called Amygdalus lindleyi Carrière (Lindley’s almonds) in honor of the English botanist who described him for the first time. However, this name did not take root. In 1917, the American scientist Percy Ricker again proposed to place this plant in the genus Almonds and named it Amygdalus triloba (Lindl.) Ricker (three-bladed almonds). Among gardeners this name also has fixed. But the story does not end there. In 1955, a Russian and Soviet botanist, a specialist in the flora of Central Asia, Vasily Drobov proposed to move this plant to the genus Peach and named Persica triloba (Lindl.) Drobow (three-lobed peach). The world botanical community reacted coolly to this change. Also, the proposal of Maria Pakhomova to attribute the plant to the genus Luisania was not accepted in the world botanical systematics. In 1959, after extensive research, Pakhomova proposed the name Louiseania triloba (Lindl.) Pachom. (louisania three-lobed).
In the modern project “The Plant List”, developed by the Royal Kew Botanical Gardens (UK) and Missouri Botanical Gardens (USA), this plant is named Prunus triloba Lindl. (three-blade plum). All other names are treated as synonyms. As they say, back to basics.
But only among gardeners this beautiful plant is still called either almond, or the more beautiful name – louisania.
This year, you won’t be able to enjoy the flowering of almonds-louiséanias alive, so we are waiting for you next year. And you already know the difficult history of the formation of the name of this plant.
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