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Science of the Amaryllids

Nature volume 162, page 347 (28 August 1948) | Download Citation



THE American Plant Life Society, organised for the increase and diffusion of knowledge concerning plant-life, issues the year-book "Herbertia", which is devoted to the Amaryllids. Issues for 1946 and 1947 appeared together late in 1947 (from the Society, Box 2398, Stanford, California), and contain some useful papers of scientific interest. A detailed account of "the karyo-systematics of the sub-genus Ajax of the genus Narcissus" (Vol. 13, 1946) is contributed by A. Fernandes and Rosette Fernandes of Portugal. Of about eighteen species, fourteen are diploids, normally with n = 7. Narcissus hispanicus is constituted of diploid and triploid forms, N. tortuosus is triploid, and N. bicolor tetraploid. Fifteen somatic chromosomes are found in N. asturiensis, N. minor, N. pumilus and N. pallidiflorus. Since all the species have the same karyotype, this supports the idea of Baker (1888) that the group is a single, very polymorphic Linnean species. The different forms have arisen by gene mutation and polyploidy.

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