Malus × heterophylla Spach

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Credits

Julian Sutton (species), Nick Dunn (cultivars)

Recommended citation
Sutton, J. & Dunn, N., 'Malus × heterophylla' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/malus/malus-x-heterophylla/). Accessed 2021-05-12.

Genus

Glossary

hybrid
Plant originating from the cross-fertilisation of genetically distinct individuals (e.g. two species or two subspecies).
included
(botanical) Contained within another part or organ.
synonym
(syn.) (botanical) An alternative or former name for a taxon usually considered to be invalid (often given in brackets). Synonyms arise when a taxon has been described more than once (the prior name usually being the one accepted as correct) or if an article of the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature has been contravened requiring the publishing of a new name. Developments in taxonomic thought may be reflected in an increasing list of synonyms as generic or specific concepts change over time.
variety
(var.) Taxonomic rank (varietas) grouping variants of a species with relatively minor differentiation in a few characters but occurring as recognisable populations. Often loosely used for rare minor variants more usefully ranked as forms.

Credits

Julian Sutton (species), Nick Dunn (cultivars)

Recommended citation
Sutton, J. & Dunn, N., 'Malus × heterophylla' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/malus/malus-x-heterophylla/). Accessed 2021-05-12.

An old, confused name, included only because it is still sometimes seen in books and other listings. Spach (1834) quite carefully described a tree of unknown origin grown in French gardens, suggesting that it resembled what might be expected of a hybrid between an orchard apple and an American species, strongly disagreeing with others’ opinion that it was a variety of M. sempervirens (a synonym of M. angustifolia), and commenting on its pale pink, highly fragrant flowers. Jacobson (1996) equates it with Rehder’s better-defined M. × platycarpa (q.v.). Fiala (1994) maintains the name for hybrids between M. coronaria and M. domestica, since he interprets M. × platycarpa as a variety of M. coronaria. However, Plants of the World Online (Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew 2020) lists it as a synonym of the Mediterranean Pyrus spinosa, although Spach’s description really does not suggest that species. The name is best left to sink into obscurity.