What are the differences between Cyps, Paphs and Phrags?

Discussion in 'Taxonomy' started by Kevin, Mar 18, 2010.

Slippertalk Orchid Forum

Help Support Slippertalk Orchid Forum:

  1. Mar 19, 2010 #41

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Guest

    Thanks. So, after 38 posts, we get back to what I thought all along. I was just hoping there was a way, but it seems there isn't. Thanks for all the thoughts and discussion - I sure learned some stuff here!
     
  2. Mar 19, 2010 #42

    parvi_17

    parvi_17

    parvi_17

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2006
    Messages:
    1,418
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    Well what we were discussing about the number of locules in the ovaries, as well as the distribution, and growth habit and structure, are the main things that distinguish them. There is also some molecular evidence out there to support the current classification of the species. I think this group is still somewhat poorly understood, but taxonomists are making some headway.
     
  3. Mar 19, 2010 #43

    NYEric

    NYEric

    NYEric

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Messages:
    47,157
    Likes Received:
    83
    Location:
    New York City Apartment
    Age has something to do with experience but it is not all that matters. I've seen a few slipper orchids in my time and I can tell you I've seen some leave o nslippers that I thought were phrags and they were paphs. End of story. I didn't make any belligerent comment to you today and now I have to go back thru all my posts to ensure that I haven't in the past. If I offended you with my "pity" emoticom I apologise. No problem.
     
  4. Mar 19, 2010 #44

    parvi_17

    parvi_17

    parvi_17

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2006
    Messages:
    1,418
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    Okay well you were the one making remarks about age so maybe next time you should think before you speak. And I really hope you don't expect me to believe that that emoticon was not a sarcastic, passive-aggressive thing to include in your comment. If you seriously can't remember a time when you were belligerent towards me then you are just oblivious to your own comments. But I will speak no more of it here. I don't want to fight with you, especially not in public. If you have anything more to say to me then please send me a PM because I will not reply to you here.
     
  5. Mar 20, 2010 #45

    VAAlbert

    VAAlbert

    VAAlbert

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2006
    Messages:
    113
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    it's not so tough

    All of the conduplicate guys are much more similar to each other, IMHO, than the numerous genera of oncidioid orchids. I segregated Mexipedium from Phrag, but later sunk Mex and Phrag into Paph to reflect this. For the record, I prefer keeping Mexipedium separate since it can be -- but you can accept any classification you want; Mex, traditional Phrag, and traditional Paph are each monophyletic.... and form a monophyletic group together relative to Cyp and Selen. I just made Paph names available for many Phrag species, as well as for Mex, in case others would prefer to call them all Paphs.... like some people would rather have a whole bunch of Oncidiums (or whatever the earliest legal name is) instead of a bunch of genera. Yes, molecular data currently support Mex as distinct, or as a Phrag if you like. That conclusion was based on 2 DNA regions .... and I'm not yet convinced exactly how Mex is related to Paph and Phrag, so my lab is investigating this further with a whole bunch of genes. Mex and Phrag chromosomes are considerably smaller than those of Paphs. Yes, Phrag is trilocular, Mex is at the tips & uni at midsection, and Paph is unilocular. Cyp is uni, Selen is tri. But there are three carpels there no matter what; the locularity business is just a matter of the degree of their fusion.

    Yours,

    Vic Albert.
    http://biology.buffalo.edu/Faculty/Albert/albert.html
     
  6. Mar 20, 2010 #46

    NYEric

    NYEric

    NYEric

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Messages:
    47,157
    Likes Received:
    83
    Location:
    New York City Apartment
    Talk about sarcastic and passive agressive!

    Ok I would but since you've chosen not to accept PM's from me you're obviously having a hissy fit and should pull your panties back up. If you don't want to air your issues in public, dont! You don't mean enough for me to get very upset about though so I'll just reiterate what I said and state, "Peace man."
     
  7. Mar 20, 2010 #47

    smartie2000

    smartie2000

    smartie2000

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    ...I was going so say that we could seperate phrags and paphs into several other genera if we wanted to. I am glad we did not, otherwise we be just as convoluted as the Oncidium or Cattleya alliance.
    (I bet some taxonomists hate orchids because so many unneccessary genera were created...or so many similar species)

    Phrags and paphs don't breed into each other (at least not very easily). That is one good reason to accept them as sperate genera. But assessing the ability for hybridization is not used so often in botany when compared to zoology. Of course there were other characteristics already discussed that are more important.
     
  8. Mar 20, 2010 #48

    kentuckiense

    kentuckiense

    kentuckiense

    Debaser

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2006
    Messages:
    2,103
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Eric, please refer to rule 8 at http://www.slippertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=18. While Joe's messages were certainly confrontational and could be considered insulting, you stooped to a direct ad hominem attack and insulted his masculinity. Consider this to be your first warning.

    Joe, I understand that you are frustrated, but there are better ways to handle things. Referring to someone as "oblivious" isn't one of the ways. So, again, consider this a first warning to you.

    I think I can speak for the rest of the moderating staff when I say that I certainly enjoy a good, solid discussion of slipper orchid biology, but only when the discourse remains civilized. So, I'd like to highly encourage both parties of this disagreement to cease with the back-and-forth and get back on topic so we can continue what I would certainly describe as a very interesting and thought-provoking thread. I love it when we have a topic that requires us to pull the books off the shelves and look up journal articles.

    Let's get back to that and do it in a civilized fashion.
     
  9. Mar 20, 2010 #49

    kentuckiense

    kentuckiense

    kentuckiense

    Debaser

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2006
    Messages:
    2,103
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Thanks for the input, Dr. Albert. I wonder how much furor there would be Mex, Paph, and Phrag were all combined into one genus. Obviously, it is biologically sound, but I'm guessing some of us here would take to the streets and flip over cars. Opinions?
     
  10. Mar 20, 2010 #50

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Guest

     
  11. Mar 20, 2010 #51

    smartie2000

    smartie2000

    smartie2000

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    I think they do have reason to change up some things. Sometimes the taxonomists don't get it right the first time. I always did think Laelia purpurata looked too much like a Cattleya. I am glad they made that change, it is Cattleya purpurata now and it will take time to adjust.

    As well much of the changes were due to new methods and technologies such as molecular phylogenetics. This is the use of structure of the DNA to provide insight on the evolutionary relationships of the species. This recent reclassification are mostly based on this. Some of the history seen in DNA, may not be morphologically seen. There are reversal of characters in plant evolution that make morphology tricky to use. This is where DNA comes in.

    I believe sometimes mitochondrial DNA is used, and this DNA is only passed from the female parent. For example you would have your mother's mitochondrial DNA and not any of your fathers. Over long time spans mitochondrial DNA would mutate due to repeated replications. Scientists can trace the evolutionary relationships of an organism using this DNA.

    But you must have valid species specimen for this analysis, otherwise there will be mistakes (and there were mistakes!). If you took a Paph bellatulum, and it was really a Paph wenshanense look-alike (natural hybrid of concolor and bellatulum) your results would be very different, because all mitochondrial DNA was from the pod parent of the initial natural hybridizing (could have been either concolor or bellatulum).

    Molecular methods are beyond my scope of knowledge. Many genes are used, and types of DNA

    One of my previous botany professor was not a fan of Orchidaceae, who's interest is molecular phylogenetics and evolutionary biology. I never got to asking her why, but I have guesses...ironic that she is the one that taught me enough to type in this thread. But she was so wrong about the biology of Cypripediums!
     
  12. Mar 20, 2010 #52

    Rick

    Rick

    Rick

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    12,765
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Leiper's Fork, TN

    Without focusing on the exceptions I think you can go back to one of Tom's posts (with enhancement).

    Cyps - generally found in temperate-subarctic regions of northern hemisphere, plicate (pleated) leaves, mostly deciduous in winter.

    Paphs - tropical Asia and South Pacific. Conduplicate leaves, normally wide, never grass like.

    Phrags - tropical South America. Conduplicate leaves, normally narrow, many are grass like.

    This will get you out of trouble most of the time.

    BTW I believe that if you go back far enough into the evolution of the taxonomy of plants (somewhere in the 1800's) all slipper flowers from all the primary groups were classified as Cyps. The nomenclature splitting into the primary genera we see now I believe happened late in the 1800's.

    It's probably important to note that taxonomy is very dynamic with the names of plants and animals changing all the time.
     
  13. Mar 20, 2010 #53

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Guest

    This was my original question:
    This, I knew, and is easily explained, but it says nothing about the flowers. Most photos you see of orchids, slipper orchids included, do not show the plant (Thanks NYEric for insisting on whole plant photos - you're not the only one who likes this:)). So, if only looking at a photo, which most of the time would only show the flower, how do you tell the difference? The answer, again, seems to be there is no answer.
     
  14. Mar 20, 2010 #54

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Guest

    Yes, I'm sure they have a reason, but it almost seems like a make-work project and status for some. As for the species you mentioned, at least it's not a Sophronitis anymore! So, I guess that taxonomist got it wrong? And the one who is calling it a Cattleya is right? At present, I am completely confused by the long-petalled Phrag species. I need to see a name beside a photo to know which is which. I have a Phrag wallisii, which is not that any more, but is warszewiczianum, which, I think, used to be the name for another species. And who decided that the Phrags should have one species called warszewiczianum, and another called warszewiczii? Isn't that more confusing?

    Anyway, this was not mean to be a taxonomy thread - I just wanted a straight-forward explanation of what you are looking at when you see a Phrag flower and a Paph flower side-by-side to tell which is which.
     
  15. Mar 20, 2010 #55

    smartie2000

    smartie2000

    smartie2000

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    The reason they had to change was because the type specimen (the first plant collected for description and then stored in a herbarium) of warszewiczianum was not really a warszewiczianum. They made a mistake and linked this plant to the dark pouched variety.

    Phrag wallisii is not a name used for another species anymore. wallisii is a synonym of warszewiczianum. This is the Phrag with the lighter coloured pouch, often creamy coloured. (wallisii may stick to me for horticultural purposes, because I cannot mix up this way) Phrag warszewiczianum was described earlier than wallisii, so the epithet warszewiczianum was honored.

    Phrag powowii was then used as the new description in 2004 for the darker coloured Phrag after the discovery of the error. However, I noticed recently Phrag warscewiczii is currently used. I looked it up and "warscewiczii" was used in 1873, when Phrags were classfied as Selenipediums. Due to honoring of the first discriptor, warscewiczii is the epithet should be the name used in scientific literature. It was not neccesary to coin the name Phrag powowii, because an epithet name already existed.
    I prefer to use popowii for horticultural purposes, because there will be no accidental confusion, popowii is not similarly named to any other long petalled Phrag.

    In this case name changes reflected the honoring of the first non-errorous descriptors of the plant. Scientists work their entire life, and they do deserve this right.
    Correct me if I am wrong about anything above. This case is more twisted than the usual.

    In conclusion, in science the acceptable names should be:
    Phrag warszewiczianum is light coloured
    Phrag warscewiczii is dark coloured

    There are other differences between the two besides colour that makes then separate species.

    If you dont want to be confused horticulturally, I suggest not using Phrag warszewiczianum as a name. I am not sure everyone would agree with me.
     
  16. Mar 20, 2010 #56
    totally in agreement, as long as the difference between horticulture and taxonomy is kept. ;) Within the orchid world i very often see that people complain about the work of taxonomists and botanists, like putting horticulture as a priority when naming plants, which is compeltelly wrong... comments liek "how can I continua following the correctname of my Cattleya Guarianthe Sophronitis Laelia Purpurata or whatever it is called now or tomorrow!!?" (no kidding, this was copied and translated from another forum!) are totally ridiculous... IMO (P.S.- No intention to offend anyone here or on other forums with my opinion!)
     
  17. Mar 20, 2010 #57

    Rick

    Rick

    Rick

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    12,765
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Leiper's Fork, TN
    As long as you are strictly looking at flower photos you are 100% correct.

    Looking up some old names was kind of interesting.

    In the 1890's Paphs and Phrags were just called Cyps pretty universally, however the history for Phrag sargentianum is funny:

    in 1901 Kraenzlin called it Cypripedium sargentianum
    in 1897 Hallier called it Paphiopedilum sargentianum
    in 1900 Rolfe called it Phragmipedium sargentianum
    in 1898 Pfitzer called it Phragmopedilum sargentianum

    The very common Phrag longifolium also went through a pretty crazy naming history:

    It was a Cyp as early as 1852 to 1898
    With some overlap with Paph around 1892.
    It also spent some time as Selenepedium 1869 to 1888
    Phragmopedilum starting around 1898
    and ending up as Phragmipedium as early as 1903

    Fortunately the total number of slipper species (of all 5 present genera) is very small compared to other orchid genera, so you can memorize the flower pictures easier.
     
  18. Mar 21, 2010 #58

    Lance Birk

    Lance Birk

    Lance Birk

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
    Messages:
    182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Aside from all the hyper-ventilating in this thread only Rick has come close to the answer....

    It is simply a matter of geography.

    All the known lady's slipper orchids are separated by regions.

    End of story.
     
  19. Mar 21, 2010 #59

    Rick

    Rick

    Rick

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    12,765
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Leiper's Fork, TN
    However, what's good for the goose is not always good for the gander from the taxonomist point of view.

    There presently are "Bulbophyllum" species present in tropical Asia, Africa, and South America.
     
  20. Mar 21, 2010 #60

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Kevin

    Guest

    I thought the story ended a while back, when it was established that there is no way to tell them apart by looking at them. How can you tell geography when looking at a plant and/or flower? And besides, Paphs and some Cyps both are from Asia, although not in the same habitat. Phrags and Selenipedium are both found in South America.
     

Share This Page



arrow_white