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How to name a cross?

This is a discussion on How to name a cross? within the Breeding & Hybridization forums, part of the Orchid Propagation category; No Magnus the plant does not have to be named to enter an exhibition, but ...

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  1. #21
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    No Magnus the plant does not have to be named to enter an exhibition, but if the plant is chosen for table judging and there are more than one plant of the same species or cross only then they are given names.
    Quote Originally Posted by Magnus A View Post
    And in Europe I think you have to give a plant a clone name to enter an exibition. The vendors thereby get clone name on all their exibition plants. And as the same plant can be awarded several times by different society a plant can have several Europeen awards... Plants can even be handed in and be awarded at the same show but in different years (in Europe).

    Though I have only seen the AOS award mentioned when plants are sold, not the Europeen awards.

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    Apart from the award process, I believe that clone designations are up to the plant owner's discretion. If the clone really has no merit apart from sentimental value (Naming a plowhorse Secretariat won't help to it win the Kentucky Derby, after all ) people will simply not use it.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by raybark View Post
    The moniker in the single quotes is the cultivar epithet, where cultivar is short for "cultivated variety". It is simply used to distinguish one particular plant from another of the same species or cross. Whether it is from a sexually- or asexually reproduced source is irrelevant. I think the confusion is that we often refer to that as the "clonal name".
    Agree with most of what you say here, Ray, but just to get extra-nitpicky I disagree that an orchid 'clone' is the same thing as a 'cultivar.' While many people (wrongly, IMO) use them interchangeably, and cultivar can refer to a strain comprised of one asexually-propagated individual, they're not entirely equivalent. As I was taught, 'cultivar' (cv.) refers to any type or strain developed through selective breeding or other cultural practices, while '[botanical] variety' (var.) is a naturally-occurring strain formally described as a distinct sub-population of a species. Whereas 'clone' always refers exclusively to a genetically unique individual, which as noted before could be the entirety of a cultivar but more often would be only a member if belonging to a cultivar at all. Many people also use cv. and var. in confusing ways, for example calling coerulea and alba cultivars/color forms 'varieties' whether or not they merit the designation in hort/botanical terms. Not that it really matters much, obviously there's a horticultural vernacular that doesn't have to correspond exactly to 'correct' formal use of terms (plus of course people may just disagree on use of terms), but personally I find the distinction between 'clone' and 'cultivar' a useful one to maintain...

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by raybark View Post
    The moniker in the single quotes is the cultivar epithet, where cultivar is short for "cultivated variety". It is simply used to distinguish one particular plant from another of the same species or cross. Whether it is from a sexually- or asexually reproduced source is irrelevant. I think the confusion is that we often refer to that as the "clonal name".
    Okay. Got it. It's to name one plant, whether produced sexually or asexually. That makes sense. So I could go ahead and name my lobbii something now if I wanted (not that it would do any good at this point, but theoretically, I could, since there was no cultivar or clonal name attached to it and the seller never returned my question about a cultivar name.)

    Quote Originally Posted by gnathaniel View Post
    As I was taught, 'cultivar' (cv.) refers to any type or strain developed through selective breeding or other cultural practices, while '[botanical] variety' (var.) is a naturally-occurring strain formally described as a distinct sub-population of a species. Whereas 'clone' always refers exclusively to a genetically unique individual, which as noted before could be the entirety of a cultivar but more often would be only a member if belonging to a cultivar at all.
    Okay...I'm really confused now. I seem to be getting different opinions within this thread...some are saying that a name in single quotes (be it a cultivar or clonal name) can only apply to one plant from a cross and that exact plant's clones, but not its siblings. (Please see Ray's quote above, where he says a name in quotes is to distinguish ONE plant from a cross from others of the same cross, be it sexually produced or asexually.) But you are saying that the cultivar name can apply to a whole "strain," which would imply to me that it could follow all the offspring of those two exact parent plants?

    Let me see if I'm getting the gist here. So, Nat, you are saying that if I were to cross my unique lobbii with another unique plant, could I then call all the progeny by the same 'cultivar name?' Do I need to designate that it is a "strain" in that case if it applies to all of the progeny?

    Basically I want to cross my unique lobbii with something else. If the result is a plant that is unique from the rest of the crosses of those two species plants already out there, could I give all the progeny of my two plants a cultivar name, to distinguish them from every other cultivar of the same two parent species? For example, if I get really cool, branching lobbii-looking plants as offspring, could I call them all Phaleanopsis (appropriate grex here) 'Crazy Lobby' strain?

    Then if I were to clone one particular plant that is outstanding, I could further distinguish it by giving it a clonal name as well? So that plant would then be called something different still to distinguish it from the rest of the strain. It could be Phalaenopsis (appropriate grex) 'Crazy Loony Lobby.' And then any asexual clones of that plant would carry the 'Crazy Loony Lobby' clonal name, right?

    Please tell me I have this straight now!

    Quote Originally Posted by raybark View Post
    One last thing - in your first post you said something to the effect of "they are seedlings, not clones". How do you know that? If the vendor is selling Phal. Corona 'Lemon Bomb' plants that are true clones, but simply small plants, they would be indistinguishable from sexually-reproduced Phal. Corona seedlings. Again I view the confusion as being terminology-based: "seedling" is often used to mean "small, immature plants", and not necessarily to indicate "grown from seed". Unless you know that vendor to be unknowing or disreputable, you're probably OK to trust that they are clones of the original plant.
    I know they are seedlings (as in "raised from seed," not "baby plants") because in the auction he says "The flower picture is of another flower from this cross and will show what the flower should look like." I've seen this guy listing these before, and he has used phrases like, "We are expecting bright yellow flowers similar to the picture above." This leads me to believe they are produced from seed and not genetic duplicates.

    Will someone please straighten me out on whether a 'cultivar name' can apply to only one plant or many plants derived by the same "selective breeding?" I want to know what to name my babies from whatever I decide to cross this particularly outstanding lobbii with!

  5. #25
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    Orchids have two names. First the grex name...so there is a cross. All offspring of that cross are labeled as (ABC x XYZ) if the cross (or grex) is unregistered. If the breeder wishes to register it, it then gets a grex name (which refers to orchids from that cross only). A bit like the "Jingleheimer-Smith" family...all of Joe and Mary Jingleheimer-Smiths kids are "Jingleheimer-Smiths".

    The name in single quotes denotes a certain particular orchid. Like little Jimmy J-S, Little Nancy J-S, etc. They may both be out of the same cross, but they'd be offended to be called each other's names, right? For orchids this name is sometimes referred to as a clonal name, sometimes as a cultivar epithet. Nowadays, usually I hear clonal name. But all with the same clonal name have to be exactly the same in terms of DNA...so, they must be divisions or clones, not just siblings from the grex (and yes, I find it confuing that divisions, which are not cloned, still are referred to as having clonal names...but it means an exact copy, not aq lab-produced clone, so divisions still count).

    The owner of a particular plant can register a clonal name, but typically only the breeder can name the grex (unless a plant is awarded and so needs a grex name, and the breeder cannot be found or declines to registers that cross). And, the grex must be named before its individual plants receive clonal names (which is why sometimes the breeder must be tracked down to name the grex).

    I hope this helps.

  6. #26
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    Here's how I understand it. If you cross your unique lobbii with another orchid, it gets the same grex name as any other cross of those two orchids. If the cross (grex) has not been named, you get to register it if you so wish...normally breeders don't pay to register every cross they make, but just the best ones.

    Then if you had one particular plant of that grex that is outstanding, you could further distinguish it by giving it a clonal name. So that then that plant and any of its divisions or clones (ie, genetical duplicates) of that plant would carry the clonal name.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kmac View Post
    Orchids have two names. First the grex name...so there is a cross. All offspring of that cross are labeled as (ABC x XYZ) if the cross (or grex) is unregistered. If the breeder wishes to register it, it then gets a grex name (which refers to orchids from that cross only). A bit like the "Smith" family...all of Joe and Mary Smiths are "Smiths"

    The name in single quotes denotes a certain particular orchid. Like little Jimmy Smith, Little Nancy Smith, etc. They may both be out of the same cross, but they'd be offended to be called each other's names, right? For orchids this name is sometimes referred to as a clonal name, sometimes as a cultivar epithet. Nowadays, usually I hear clonal name. But all with the same clonal name have to be exactly the same in terms of DNA...so, they must be divisions or clones, not just siblings from the grex (and yes, I find it confuing that divisions, which are not cloned, still are referred to as having clonal names...but it means an exact copy, not aq lab-produced clone, so divisions still count).

    The owner of a particular plant can register a clonal name, but typically only the breeder can name the grex (unless a plant is awarded and so needs a grex name, and the breeder cannot be found or declines to registers that cross). And, the grex must be named before its individual plants receive clonal names (which is why sometimes the breeder must be tracked down to name the grex).

    I hope this helps.
    Thanks, Kathi. Yep, all of this I pretty much understand. I'm not confused between grex and clonal name, or who is qualified to name each. I'm confused as to whether there is a difference between 'clonal name' and 'cultivar name' as Nathaniel defined them above. He described a cultivar name as the following: 'cultivar' (cv.) refers to any type or strain developed through selective breeding or other cultural practices
    .

    So if the cultivar name can apply to a strain or "type," that would imply that more than one plant can be covered under the umbrella of the cultivar name. I understand the definition of "clonal name" (one plant, or a division of that plant...or any plant that is genetically identical to it through asexual reproduction of some sort...meristem, tissue culture, etc). And I understand that this name would not be able to be applied to siblings of the same batch (hence your "Don't call me my sister's name) reference. (Which was cute, by the way!)

    What I'm wondering is how to tell if a name in single quotes is a clonal name or a cultivar name, and, whether a cultivar name can apply to more than one plant within the same batch that is produced by the same specific process of "selective breeding," but which are not necessarily genetically identical. And thus, if the cultivar name is shared by different plants, does that need to be indicated in any way...like by saying "strain" after the name.

    For example, I recently purchased a Phalaenopsis amboinensis var flava 'Main Show' strain. Does this mean 'Main Show' is a cultivar name, and all the siblings of the plants bred in this bunch carry the 'Main Show' strain name? (I won it at auction and have seen others listed by the same seller under the same 'Main Show' strain name, so it would appear this is a cultivar name that applies to a particular "batch" of plants).

    Or does it mean that one of the siblings of this bunch happened to get awarded and was then given the clonal name 'Main Show,' and the seller is merely telling me that this plant comes from a batch that produced an award-quality plant? And if I use this plant for breeding, can I use the 'Main Show' name at all in the progeny?

    I'm confused as to the implications of the 'cultivar' name applying to more than one plant produced by the same "selective breeding," as Nathaniel defined it above. I hope he pops back in and elaborates.

    Thanks, everybody, again, for all your feedback and explanations! My head is spinning, but I'm learning a lot! I'm definitely going to be printing out this thread once everyone's done pitching in so I can reference it later!

    Okay...so who can tell me what's up with my Phalaenopsis amboinensis var flava that carries the 'Main Show' strain name? Is that what a cultivar name looks like?

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrchidAddict View Post
    Okay...I'm really confused now. I seem to be getting different opinions within this thread...some are saying that a name in single quotes (be it a cultivar or clonal name) can only apply to one plant from a cross and that exact plant's clones, but not its siblings. (Please see Ray's quote above, where he says a name in quotes is to distinguish ONE plant from a cross from others of the same cross, be it sexually produced or asexually.) But you are saying that the cultivar name can apply to a whole "strain," which would imply to me that it could follow all the offspring of those two exact parent plants?
    Jenn you are over complicating it, there is no need for confusion. The name in the single quotes stands for the clone, not for the variety, so the name in quote will only apply to the meristem propagations or divisions of that plant, not its offsprings whereas the variety names will carry on to the offspring. For eg. consider The eg. of Cattleya purpurata var. carnea. The variety carnea distinguishes it from other varieties like var. rubra, var Werkhauserii etc etc. But within the variety carnea there exists variation and individual plants with distinct patterns are assigned clonal names like for eg. Cattleya purpurata var. carnea 'Maria Da Gloria'

    Laelia purpurata var carnea 'Maria Da Gloria'
    Or

    Cattleya purpurata var. carnea 'Hihimanu' DSC_0013.JPG
    Or as one master grower Mauro Rosim names them just as no.5, no.7 etc etc

    Laelia purpurata Lindley & Paxton - var. carnea '#5'

    Laelia purpurata Lindley & Paxton - var. carnea '#7'

    Laelia purpurata Lindley & Paxton - var. carnea '#9'

    If any of them are crossed to each other or any other clone of Cattleya purpurata var carnea or even selfed, the resulting offspring will be Cattleya purpurata var. carnea but none of the clonal names can stick to the offspring. Though the variety remains the same var. carnea.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gnathaniel View Post
    Agree with most of what you say here, Ray, but just to get extra-nitpicky I disagree that an orchid 'clone' is the same thing as a 'cultivar.' While many people (wrongly, IMO) use them interchangeably, and cultivar can refer to a strain comprised of one asexually-propagated individual, they're not entirely equivalent. As I was taught, 'cultivar' (cv.) refers to any type or strain developed through selective breeding or other cultural practices, while '[botanical] variety' (var.) is a naturally-occurring strain formally described as a distinct sub-population of a species. Whereas 'clone' always refers exclusively to a genetically unique individual, which as noted before could be the entirety of a cultivar but more often would be only a member if belonging to a cultivar at all. Many people also use cv. and var. in confusing ways, for example calling coerulea and alba cultivars/color forms 'varieties' whether or not they merit the designation in hort/botanical terms. Not that it really matters much, obviously there's a horticultural vernacular that doesn't have to correspond exactly to 'correct' formal use of terms (plus of course people may just disagree on use of terms), but personally I find the distinction between 'clone' and 'cultivar' a useful one to maintain...
    I agree 100%. I don't believe I stated that "clone" and "cultivar" are synonymous, but that folks often use them as such, hence the potential source of confusion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Halloamey View Post
    Jenn you are over complicating it, there is no need for confusion. The name in the single quotes stands for the clone, not for the variety, so the name in quote will only apply to the meristem propagations or divisions of that plant, not its offsprings whereas the variety names will carry on to the offspring. For eg. consider The eg. of Cattleya purpurata var. carnea. The variety carnea distinguishes it from other varieties like var. rubra, var Werkhauserii etc etc. But within the variety carnea there exists variation and individual plants with distinct patterns are assigned clonal names like for eg. Cattleya purpurata var. carnea 'Maria Da Gloria'
    Thank you!!

    I'm pretty sure I get it now. Basically, whenever a name is in quotes, it refers to one particular plant's genetic code. All plants bearing that name must be absolutely identical genetically. Any type of seed propagation, be it selfing or crossing, invalidates that name. Only actual clones, whose genetic makeup is completely identical to the original, will carry the name in quotes.

    Okay. Whew!!

    Thank you everybody for all of your help! I feel like I owe everyone who has pitched in to this thread one huge hug!! Or at least one very enthusiastic round of applause!


    One last question: (this should be an easy one, hopefully!). As I understand it, there are no implied patents on clones, right? (None of the clones I purchased ever came with a "propagation prohibited" notice on the tag like so many other plants do.) So if I come up with an award-winning cross, then I clone it and sell it, there's nothing stopping anyone else from buying it, cloning it themselves, and selling it under the same name, correct?

    That seems a bit unfair to growers who come up with brilliant crosses...once they sell one, there's nothing stopping the world from cloning the heck out of it, eventually reducing its value.

    Is there some sort of patent process that I don't know about? Are the clones I purchase patented and I just don't know it?

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