A friend of mine, Kelly Griffin, is one of the world’s foremost hybridizers of aloes, which means he creates new plants without the approval of Mother & Father Nature. When one creates a new plant, one gets to name it. Some of Kelly’s hybrids named by him include:
Aloe ‘Bright Star’
Aloe ‘Christmas Carol’
Aloe ‘Coral Edge’
Aloe ‘Draculas Blood’
Aloe ‘Raspberry Ruffles’
Aloe ‘Papa Woody’
Mother & Father Nature sometimes create hybrids on their own, so simply calling it a hybrid in the plant community doesn’t work because people want to know if it’s a natural hybrid or a human-created hybrid.
There are two ways to write the name of human-created hybrids, one using cv. to mean cultivar, and the other to put the name of the cultivar in single quotes.
Sometimes hybridizers name plants after people (‘Papa Woody’). Other times they name them because of what the plant looks like or what it reminds them of.
One of the more interesting cultivars in the plant world is this one:
Its name is Lophocereus schottii cv. Big Penis Cactus. It’s a name that is difficult to say in polite company and, perhaps, not safe for viewing at work.
I had four of these plants until I gave one away yesterday to a friend who owns a plant nursery. The following picture shows the other three, with the small one at right being the one I gave away. The middle plant is about four feet tall.
And now you know….