Gladiolus in Tropical Africa: Systematics, Biology & Evolution

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Timber Press, 1996 - Gardening - 321 pages
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Peter Goldblatt's Gladiolus in Tropical Africa is the result of more than five years of field, laboratory, and historical research. This research, conducted in the course of a lifelong study of the genera of the iris family, brings order to the heretofore fragmentary and confused state of knowledge about members of the genus in the heart of its geographical range. The book includes detailed information about the discovery of tropical African Gladiolus species, the etymology of their names and a complete account of their synonyms, the morphology and anatomy of the plants, their geographical distributions and habitats, their relationships, and other aspects of their biology, including ecology and ethnobotany. The book is extensively illustrated with 41 color plates, 61 drawings by the internationally recognized botanist and botanical artist, John C. Manning, and 85 distribution maps. A glossary of special terminology, a bibliography, and an index complete the work. Among the introductory chapters of the book is an account of the development of the garden gladiolus. The characteristics of only a few species have been used to yield the array of existing cultivars through hybridization. The illustrations and descriptions in Gladiolus in Tropical Africa reveal that there is much more variation that could be exploited horticulturally to increase the diversity of garden and greenhouse gladiolus.

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