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Browse the Botanical Definitions

In addition to searching through the individual botanical definitions you may now benefit also from browsing the extensive information gleaned through our research. This list has been compiled in alphabetic order according to the genus or species..

To browse the definitions please click on one of the buttons below to see the section under that letter. In some cases there may be no words under a particular letter.

 

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Definitions
Pinellia [genus name] commemorates an Italian botanist, humanist, scholar and bibliophile, Gian Vincenzo Pinelli (1535-1601), who is especially remembered for his extensive library. His library was famous in Europe and contained ultimately over 8500 printed works and hundreds of manuscripts (in various languages including Greek, Latin and Arabic) which were acquired over 50 years, many of them via Europe's then new-fangled 'booksellers'. Pinelli encouraged learning and, in the last half of the 1500s, was widely known for offering access to his private library to any serious-minded enquirer, academic and non-academic alike. He maintained a herb garden and, after the death of the Italian physician and botanist, Luca Ghini (1490-1556), who was a professor of medicine at Bologna and created both the first known herbarium and the first botanical garden, Pinelli transcribed some of Ghini's papers which were sought after as Ghini had left no published works. In addition to his library Pinelli also collected mathematical instruments. He was interested too in optics (he lost the sight of one eye after a childhood accident), and he learnt to play a musical instrument. Authorities note he detested travelling yet he established a wide network of eminent correspondents from all over Europe. [See Pinellia.]

Pinguicula [genus name] is derived from Latin pinguis (fat) with reference to the greasy-looking leaves. [See Pinguicula.]

pinnatifolia is derived from pinnata (a feathery arrangement of leaflets on each side of the common stalk) and Latin -folia (leaved) components meaning 'with leaves in feathery arrangements'. [See Hicksbeachia pinnatifolia.]

pinnatum is a botanical reference to the leaf-shape meaning 'a feathery arrangement of leaflets on each side of the common stalk'. [See Platymiscium pinnatum.]

Piper [genus name] is derived from a Greek name peperi that itself comes from Sanskrit pippali or, some say, Bengalese pippul, and is a classical Latin name. [See Piper.]

Piscidia [genus name] is derived from Latin piscis (fish) and caedo (kill, cut down, strike, beat) components with reference to the use as fish poison.

Members of this family (Leguminosae) absorb nitrogen from the air. Through the bacterial nodules on their deep growing roots, they will introduce nitrogen to the soil (and aerate it), to the benefit of neighbouring plants and any following them in the same soil. [See Piscidia.]

pisifera is derived from Latin pisum (pea) and -fer (bearing, carrying) components. [See Chamaecyparis pisifera.]

Pistacia [genus name] is derived from Greek pistake (pistachio) which itself comes from a Persian name. [See Pistacia.]

Pistia [genus name] is derived from Greek pistos (water) with reference to an aquatic environment. [See Pistia.]

Pithecellobium [genus name] is derived from Greek pitheco- (monkey, ape) and ellobion (ear-ring) components.

Initially Pithecellobium was spelt Pithecollobium.

Members of this family (Leguminosae) absorb nitrogen from the air. Through the bacterial nodules on their deep growing roots they will introduce nitrogen to the soil (and aerate it) to the benefit of neighbouring plants and any following them in the same soil. [See Pithecellobium.]


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