This is the season for dreaming by the fire with seed catalogs. Are you baffled by some of the catalog Latin lingo? Here's a quick guide:
- Genus is in Capitalized italics
- Species is in lower case italics
- Variety can include size, color, habit or more. The variety is often in 'single quotation marks', especially if it is named after a person or place.
- The catalog then often adds the common name, commentary, and suggestions for companion plantings.
For an example, let's look at a humorous listing from a mock nursery catalog put out by Shady Deals Nursery:
Colocasia esculenta 'Pelosii' (Nancy's Revenge Elephant's Ear) $5,000. A real first of its kind! While we find this attractive, we've also found it to be quite aggressive and very detrimental to nearby bushes, so watch it closely. A superb choice for the West Coast.