Amateur Gardening

The achillea naming debacle

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BACK in 1986, the first of several dozen new achilleas came to us from Germany. Their original names were difficult for British amateurs to read and say, so many were given English names. In some cases, the translatio­n was direct, such as ‘Feuerland’, which became ‘Fireland’. One cultivar, ‘Hoffnung’, was given the direct translatio­n name of ‘Hope’, but nurseries felt that ‘Great Expectatio­ns’ (which also means ‘hope’, of course) sounded a better plant name.

This meant that one plant had three different names! It caused much confusion, and led to the rules being changed. Now, plants that have been introduced from abroad, with foreign names, must retain them; sometimes a plant label will give an English translatio­n name, purely as an addition.

 ??  ?? Achillea ‘Feuerland’ (Fireland)
Achillea ‘Feuerland’ (Fireland)

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