Defining Baramin by the Floral Formula

Hibiscot

Hibiscot

Flowering Plant Identification

Almost every part of a plant can be used to help in identification. Leaves are the most common and usually visible for most, if not all, of the year. Bark, roots, and fruit / spores are less commonly applied, but sometimes very useful. Among the Angiosperms (flowering plants), the flowers are very useful in helping to determine a kind. There have been various methods of describing the flower parts used over the years. This author finds the floral formula quite useful.

Parts of the Flower used in the Floral Formula

Calyx
The calyx is the outer whorl of a flower. It is composed of sepals which enclose the flower bud during development. They are often green and leaf-life.
Corolla
The corolla is the second whorl of the flower. It is composed of petals which are often conspicuously colored and enclose the reproductive organs.
Androecium
The androecium is the third whorl of a flower. It is composed of stamen, the male reproductive organs of the flower. The stamen contains a stalk called a filament and the anther where the spores are produced.
Gynoecium / Pistil
The gynoecium is the innermost whorl of the flower. It is composed of carpel(s), the female reproductive organs of the flower. A carpel contains the stigma, style, and ovary.

The Symbols in the Floral Formula

Although the floral formula has existed for some time, there have been few attempts to standardize the system. The following symbols represent those that will be frequently encountered.

  • K or CA – represents the calyx
  • C or CO – represents the corolla
  • P – represents the perianth (when the calyx and corolla are fused)
  • A – represents the androecium
  • G – represents the gynoecium
  • G – an inferior ovary position
  • G – a superior ovary position
  • AG – a fused androecium and gynoecium
  • K5 – a calyx with 5 sepals
  • K&#9315 – a calyx with 4 fused sepals
  • C4(2) – a corolla with usually 4 petals, but rarely 2 petals
  • A – an androecium with many stamen (by some authors used for any number greater than 12)
  • Floral Formula

    The floral formula uses the morphological structure (form) of the flower including the calyx / sepals (K), corolla / petals (C), androecium / stamens (A), and the gynoecium (G). For example, if a flower has 5 petals it would be designated as C5. Other additional symbols are included in the formula such as: C? which represents 5 fused petals, C8 many petals (usually any number greater than 12), G an inferior ovary, and a G a superior ovary.

    Meaning of Complex Floral Formula

    A relatively simple and straightforward floral formula suggests that a kind is well defined and delineated from other kinds. For example, A4 shows a kind with 4 stamen. A more complicated floral formula with many elements, especially something in parenthesis, suggests a poorly defined kind which is in need of more work. For example, A4(8) shows a kind that usually has 4 stamen, but in rare cases has eight. This could be caused by incorrectly attributing a small group of plants within the kind. A doubling of the number could also represent some form of polyploidy (doubling of the chromosomes) that occurred within the kind.

    Floral Formula

    Plant Taxonomy includes the use of the Floral Formula. This represents the Calyx, Corolla, Androecium, and Gynoecium. The various combinations of these characters are suggested as representing the individual Created Kinds / Baramin level and can be expressed in a floral formula such as the Malvacibar Kind (including the Hibiscus) with a formula of CA3-5 CO5 A G1-∞.

    XXXVID. Last Updated: 10/01/2016
    Todd Elder

    Todd Elder

    Todd Elder has a deep desire to understand and experience Creation. As a Baraminologist, his current research includes developing the Katagenos Species Concept, the Natanzera Classification System, and the Floral Formula Method of determining Plant Kinds. As an author and speaker, his books and seminar materials are designed to encourage a growing relationship with the Creator.
    Todd Elder

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