D. adelae fower mystery

From: Jonathan (jmitchell@webaccess.net)
Date: Sun Mar 28 1999 - 14:07:42 PST

Date: Sun, 28 Mar 1999 15:07:42 -0700
From: Jonathan <jmitchell@webaccess.net>
To: cp@opus.hpl.hp.com
Message-Id: <aabcdefg983$foo@default>
Subject: D. adelae fower mystery

Hello all-

I was recently browsing through my copy of Peter's "The Savage Garden",
and came across the story of how originally only dull whitish flowers
were known on D. adelae, but then over a period of time they were
apparently extirpated or converted by a red flowered form.

Indeed, when I looked in my copy of Slack's book (which is from the
mid-70s) D. adelae is listed as having "brownish white flowers, among
the dullest in the genus." But all plants and modern photos I have ever
seen have the red flowers!

What is going on here? It seems unlikely that the one form would be
TOTALLY eliminated by the other, either through hybridising or grower
selection in favor of the one over the other, but I cannot think of any
other explantation.
I am even further confused considering Peter's statement that "even
material from the older variety eventually turns red"! What possible
mechanism could explain this?

Thank you very much for helping me answer this question-

-Jonathan Mitchell

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