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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
Lychnis [genus name] is derived for some authorities from Greek lychno- (lamp, flame, light) with reference to the brilliantly coloured flowers or the past use of the leaves of a woolly species (such as rose campion, now Silene coronaria) as lamp wicks, and is a classical name. Others have suggested that it is the Greek name of a scarlet flower. [See ... .]

lycoctonum is made up of Greek lyco- (wolf) and -ctonos (murder) components meaning 'wolf's bane'. [See Aconitum lycoctonum.]

Lycopersicon [genus name] is derived from Greek words lyco- (wolf) and Latin persica (peach) components. It was originally the name for an Egyptian plant before its transfer to the American tomato genus - and at the beginning of the 21st Century it has moved yet again and has been absorbed into the Solanum genus. [See ... .]

Lycopodium [genus name] is derived from Greek lyco- (wolf) and podion (little foot) components with reference to the plant's shape. [See Lycopodium.]

Lycopus [genus name] is derived from Greek lyco- (wolf) and pous (little foot) components with reference to the plant's shape. [See Lycopus.]

Lycoris [genus name] commemorates a beautiful Roman actress, Lycoris, whose stage name was Cytheris and who was one of the mistresses of Mark Antony (c.83-30 BC), the Roman triumvir. Some authorities quote Cicero (106-43 BC) who, in 46 BC, described her behaviour in male company when he was visiting Volumnius Eutrapelus' home. Apparently she reclined when protocol would have required her to be decorously seated, and it was noted that such licence was permitted from an actress. She is believed to have been the freedwoman and lover of Eutrapelus hence one of her names, Volumnia, and when Mark Antony sought her for himself Eutrapelus relinquished her. This action is said to have given Eutrapelus considerable power and importance eventually in Roman society. [See Lycoris.]

lyonii commemorates the name of William Scrugham Lyon (1851-1916) an American plant collector, rancher and nurseryman. Born in New York, he then lived in California from 1871-1902 and for the last twenty of those years was involved with plants, primarily collecting, cultivating and writing about them and successfully running Occidental Nurseries (which eventually changed its name to Elysian Gardens). From about 1893 he specialised in cacti and succulents. In 1902 he moved to Manila and joined the Philippines' Bureau of Agriculture as an 'expert in tropical horticulture' and 'in charge of Division of Plant Industry' and introduced many fruit trees there. Eventually he left the Bureau and then established another nursery where until his death he concentrated on tropical orchids. [See Prunus lyonii.]

Lysichiton [genus name] is derived from Greek lysi- (unfasten, release, loosen) and -chiton (tunic) components with reference to the open protective leaf-like spathe which is released or shed from the fleshy fruit spike (spadix) when the fruit ripen. [See Lysichiton.]

Lythrum [genus name] is derived from Greek lythron (blood) with reference to the colour of the flowers. [See Lythrum.]

lycopersicum is derived from the genus name Lycopersicon which is based on the Greek words lyco- (wolf) and Latin persica (peach) components, and is a Greek name for a different plant (probably Egyptian). [See Solanum lycopersicum.]


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