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Author Topic: Understanding Latin ~ Species Names  (Read 1304 times)

stuartdaly88

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Understanding Latin ~ Species Names
« on: June 20, 2015, 05:51:38 AM »
Most of these come from this website: http://theseedsite.co.uk/latin.html

It is really useful to understand these Latin words that are commonly used in the species name for taxonomy.
It gives a better understanding of the plant and especially when you encounter new plants with one of these terms used:) sometimes the species name may be a combination of two words to describe characteristics of the plant eg micro = small & carpa = fruit so a species could be 'microcarpa' = small fruited
Also note that sometimes a species name is based on who found it eg Livingstone=livingstonei
Please add anymore you know and I will edit this list and keep it alphabetical :)

abyssinica = from Abysinnia (Ethiopia) (North Africa)
acaulis = stemless
aestivalis = flowering in spring
alba = white
alpestris = from mountains
alpicola = from mountains
alpina = from the alps
altissima = tallest
america = from America
angustifolia = narrow-leaved
annua = annual
antha = -flowered (e.g. micrantha = small-flowered)
arboricola = living on trees
arctica = from the arctic
arenaria = from sandy places
argentea = silvery
armata = prickly
arvensis = of the field
aurantiaca = orange
aurea = golden, yellow
australis = from the south (not necessarily Australia)
autumnalis = of autumn
azurea = blue
barbata = bearded, hairy
bellidifolia = with leaves like those of a daisy
borealis = from the north
bulbifera = bearing bulbs
bulgarica = from Bulgaria
caerulea = blue
caespitosa = dense
campanulata = campanulate, like a bell
campestris = of the field
canadensis = from Canada
canariensis = from the Canary Isles
capensis = from the Cape, South Africa
chilensis = from Chile
chinensis = from China
chrysantha = yellow
clivora = from the hills
coccinea = red
compacta = compact
decidua = deciduous
densiflora = dense-flowered
digitata = (leaves) like a hand, with five lobes
edulis = edible
esculenta = edible
farinosa = floury, powdery
ficifolia = like a fig leaf
flava = yellow
flora = -flowered (e.g. viridiflora = green-flowered)
flore plena = with double flowers
florida = floriferous
foetida = with an unpleasant smell
folia = -leaved (e.g. tenuifolia = narrow-leaved)
foliosa = leafy
fruticosa = shrubby
gigantea = giant
glabra = smooth
glacialis = from cold areas
glutinosa = sticky
graeca = from Greece
graminifolia = with grassy leaves
grandiflora = large-flowered
grandis = big
helvetica = from Switzerland
hirsuta = hairy
hispida = bristly
humilis = short
hyemalis = of winter
incana = grey
inodora = unscented
integrifolia = entire, undivided (leaves)
japonica = from Japan
lanata = woolly
lanceolata = lance-shaped (leaves)
latifolia = wide-leaved
livingstonei = named by Livingstone
longiflora = with long flowers
longifolia = with long leaves
lutea = yellow
macrantha = large flowered
macro- = large- (e.g. macrorhiza = large-rooted)
macrocarpa = large-fruited
macrophylla = with large leaves
macrorrhiza = with large roots
maculata = spotted
magellanica = from the south of South America
magenta = magenta
magna = big
majus = bigger
maritima = maritime, near the sea
maxima = biggest
mexicana = from Mexico
micrantha = small flowered
microphylla = with small leaves
millefolia = with many (thousands of) leaves
minima = small
minor = smaller
montana = from mountains
multiflora = many flowered
muralis = growing on walls
nana = small
nocturna = nocturnal
ochroleuca = cream
odorata = perfumed
officinalis = with herbal uses
ovalifolia = with oval leaves
pallida = cream
palustris = from marshes
parvi- = small- (e.g. parivflora = small-flowered)
parviflora = small flowered
parvifolia = with small leaves
pauci- = few- (e.g. pauciflora =few-flowered)
pauciflora = few-flowered
paucifolia = with few leaves
pendula = hanging
perennis = perennial
phoenicea = purple
-phylla = -leaved (e.g. macrophylla = large-leaved)
pinnata = with pinnate leaves
poly- = many (e.g polyantha = many-flowered)
polyphylla = with many leaves, leafy
praecox = early, of spring
pratensis = field
procumbens = creeping
prostrata = prostrate
pulverulenta = dusty
pumila = small
punica = red
purpurea = deep pink
pygmaea = small
quercifolia = oak=leaved
rediviva = perennial
rivalis = from near rivers
rivularis = from near rivers
rosea = rose pink
rotundifolia = round-leaved
rubra = red
rupestris = of hills
rupicola = of hills
russica = from Russia
sanguinea = blood-red
sativa = cultivated
saxatilis = of rocks
scaber = climbing
scandens = climbing
semperviva = perennial
sibirica = from Siberia
sinense = from China
somnifera = inducing sleep
spicata = spiked
spinosa = spiny
stellata = starry
sulphurea = yellow
sylvestris = of woods
tenuifolia = with thin, narrow leaves
texensis = from Texas
tomentosa = tomentose, woolly
trifoliata = trifoliate, with three-lobed leaves
umbellata = unbellate, with flowers in an umbel
velutina = velvety
vernalis = of spring
villosa = hairy
violacea = violet
viridis = green
viscosa = sticky
vitifolia = with leaves like a vine
volubilis = twining
vulgaris = common
« Last Edit: June 20, 2015, 06:04:22 AM by stuartdaly88 »
Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.
-Jean-Jacques Rousseau

cory

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Re: Understanding Latin ~ Species Names
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2016, 01:16:56 PM »
Interesting list of terms I read all the time but don't always take time to look up their meaning.  I will read through your list for the next few days in hopes I can remember most of them.

Cory

 

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