Plant Database forum: Propogating synonyms

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Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
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eclayne
Aug 8, 2012 8:09 PM CST

Plants Admin

Is it appropriate to add all of the Latin Name synonyms of a species to all of that species cultivars? Vice versa? The idea being consistency throughout. Via a batch proposal to Dave.
Evan
[Last edited by eclayne - Aug 8, 2012 8:10 PM (+)]
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Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Aug 8, 2012 9:04 PM CST

Plants Admin

I never add all of the synonyms to anything. There usually are so many of them and some are so obscure that they might be of no interest to our database users. I concentrate on making the appropriate changes for synonyms that are currently listed as separate entries and for cultivars that are currently identified by a synonym in the database. I suppose this is only a half-measure, but Brassica rapa, for instance, has more than 100 synonyms on The Plant List. I wouldn't want to scroll through all of those just to find out something about a specific cultivar.
[Last edited by zuzu - Aug 8, 2012 9:05 PM (+)]
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Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
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eclayne
Aug 8, 2012 9:45 PM CST

Plants Admin

I agree with you about many of the synonyms not being terribly useful for our purposes Zuzu. What I'm referring to is a species entry has x number of Latin Name synonyms listed in our DB while a cultivar entry may have y.

Should the species entry and all of it's cultivars have the same list of synonyms?

Using Brassica rapa as an example:

Brassica rapa:
Brassica rapa 'Joi Choi': Bok Choy (Brassica rapa subsp. chinensis 'Joi Choi')
Brassica rapa 'Soloist': Chinese Cabbage (Brassica rapa subsp. pekinensis 'Soloist')

3 different sets of synonyms with a large list in the species entry.


Evan
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Aug 8, 2012 11:06 PM CST

Plants Admin

I think not, Evan. These are both Bok Choy and the cultivars originally were listed under those synonyms. The other synonyms for B. rapa have nothing to do with Bok Choy and don't really belong on the pages for those cultivars.
[Last edited by zuzu - Aug 9, 2012 12:49 AM (+)]
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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
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dave
Aug 9, 2012 6:33 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I'll defer to what the consensus is on this. I agree that a long list of synonyms isn't terribly useful for our database, unless those synonyms are really needed to help people nail down the specific plant they have and they might be looking for it by its old name.
Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Database Moderator Forum moderator Aroids Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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eclayne
Aug 9, 2012 8:59 AM CST

Plants Admin

If there are synonyms, as in the B. rapa example, which would confuse rather explain then it's probably not a good idea. I'd guess this is something we'll have to deal with case by case in lieu of a DB wide magic wand change.

Again in the B. rapa example, the "mother" species having a longer list of synonyms which pertain to all it's cultivars. I like this approach especially if we could have an hyperlinked species name. ex. Brassica rapa 'Joi Choi'.
Evan
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Aug 9, 2012 3:50 PM CST

Plants Admin

I must be missing something obvious or perhaps misunderstanding the point of this suggestion, but it sounds like a lot of unnecessary work. Someone wanting to know all of the synonyms of B. rapa (or at least all of the ones previously listed as separate entries in our database) would be able to find them in the B. rapa entry, but a link on the cultivar page to the list of B. rapa synonyms, many of which pertain to turnips, broccoli raab, and mustard spinach, probably would be confusing or irrelevant to someone looking up a particular Bok Choy cultivar.

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