Talk:Flowering plant

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Old talk is at Talk:Magnoliophyta

Teleological style[edit]

I haven't had time to look through the whole article, but even the first few paragraphs are phrased as if evolutionary developments have a purpose, e.g. flowers have evolved to allow angiosperms to occupy more niches. This phrasing implies a purpose behind the evolution, rather than natural selection. I don't have time to rewrite this, so I am asking for someone else to do it.Hinakana (talk) 13:52, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

Edit warring over style[edit]

Let's play by the rules, folks. This page was originally American English, so it remains. Fertilisation was originally British English, so it stays. The edit warring must stop. Pollinator 04:47, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Back links[edit]

I agree that having "back links" is a bad idea. There is no end to that, and most back links should be in the text anyway, so a redundancy that adds very little - Marshman 08:22, 1 Oct 2003 (UTC)

Aren't links to prominent containing groups the reason behind the taxoboxes?

Not clear what the question is? Does this relate to the idea of "back links" or a separate issue? BTW, rewrite of "gymnosperms" place here is an improvement - Marshman 19:07, 1 Oct 2003 (UTC)

What I mean is that it seems to me back links should be inherently redundant, because the more important ones will be listed in the "scientific classification" section of the taxobox anyways. As I understood it, this was one of the main reasons we had the taxoboxes (which are frequently a nuisance, I think at least, so better serve some useful purpose). Thanks for the appreciation, btw. :)

Then my answer is yes. So it seems like we are generally in agreement with User:Maveric149 who removed the back links added by User:Glenn. - Marshman 19:59, 1 Oct 2003 (UTC)

ARG!!! This is the only page that I found that had WikiPedia and back links in it! how am I supposed to follow the schema that people have already made?

I gotta make it navagatable!'s wiki...


Jaknouse added an alternate division into three classes (Magnoliopsida - Liliopsida - Rosopsida) into the taxobox. I have taken it down for the moment, since the taxobox is a bad place for discussing different systems, and this change seemed to be based on the understanding that it was the phylogenetic system and included only monophyletic groups. However, the proposed scheme does have the advantage of placing most flowering plants in monophyletic groups, and I'd like to suggest we consider adopting it as the wikipedia standard. What it would mean for most flower pages is changing "Magnoliopsida" to "Rosopsida" in the taxobox. -- Josh

I disagree with this approach. I understand that the system is still in flux, but the three-class system is still far closer to accurate than the two-class system, and I feel that we should be revising taxoboxes to try to gradually get closer to reflecting reality. Thus, if I'd taken one system out of the taxobox, it would have been the Liliopsida-Magnoliopsida dichotomy, which is a false one. jaknouse 01:07, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

It's definitely not false. It represents real structures of the plants in question, and it does reflect their evolutionary relationships. The problem with it is that it includes a paraphyletic group, which many taxonomists object to. But others do not, and in any case, the palaeodicots are also paraphyletic so the three-class system would be just as false. In fact, I've done a close look at alternate class schemes, and there are none that reflect current phylogenies and eliminate paraphyly that I could find.

However, if you re-read what I wrote, you will see that I'm in favor of using the three-class system, or possibly one that splits the palaeodicots even further. I would have proposed it a long time ago, but it was hard enough to get people to stop using Cronquist, and in light of the above it didn't seem worth the effort. Since you've proposed it independently, it may be time to re-evaluate that. But it affects a lot of pages, and isn't something that should be changed without some concensus. -- Josh

A problem is that the APG (I and ) II system(s) don't use formal ranks between Division and Order; perhaps if you don't want to go straight to the full list of orders (perhaps listing the orders in the text, so that links to pages for the orders would be helpful; putting the full list in the taxobox would be infelictious formatting - alternatively link to the lists of orders and families are APWeb), you'd need to replace Classes with something like Subordinate Clades, with Amborellales, Nymphyales, Austrobaileyales, Chloranthales, Ceratophyllales, Magnoliids, Eudicots and Monocots (don't trust my spelling). This isn't a polytomy, the last five froming an euangiosperm node. I'm also not sure about subsuming palaeoherbs into magnoliiids. If you do something like this you'd probably want to worry about the Magnoliopsida and Liliopsida pages, which I see currently have lists of orders.
I note in passing that the Tilia page refers to a Judd system, presumably referring to Judd et al, Plant Systematics: A Phylogenetic Approach. I think this is actually APG I. Do you want to clear references to systems other than APG II (other than in historical discussion) from WikiPedia. You can find some info on various systems at with references. Stewart R. Hinsley
Indeed it seems like a bad idea to list Magnoliopsida and Liliopsida. If the taxoboxes are supposed to follow APG II then this is definitely out. Even following Cronquist it is not all that good an idea. I am in favor of either a three way split, or for leaving this blank and including it in the text. Brya 16:33, 23 September 2005 (UTC)
Flowering plants
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Classes and orders

Rosopsida (eudicots)
Liliopsida (monocots)
Basal groups ("palaeodicots")
   Magnoliid orders

Brya, what would you suggest for subordinate pages, like oak? I think it would be difficult to keep the classes blanked on all those pages, so we would probably have to use classes Rosopsida and Liliopsida, at least. In that case, maybe we should use a mixed list, something like at right? Josh

Why are we bolding class names, listed in the table and less stable than common names?)[edit]

1. Because they are very helpful for understanding the article;
2. They aren't all listed in the table;
3. Because one at least definitely is stable, as it includes the type genus of the whole set
PLEASE PUT THEM BACK! - MPF 00:31, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

They aren't all listed in the table because they aren't all part of the standard we are using. Some other systems add classes like the Piperopsida and Asteropsida which we haven't mentioned at all, and nobody has complained about their absence. The only stable one is the Liliopsida - the Magnoliopsida, which include the type genus, are in fact one of the least stable, because they vary from the entire dicots to a small group of four orders. There's nothing special about these classes.

I don't see how bolding the class names is helpful for understanding the article. To me, it's only distracting. This is especially true here, because the common names of the groups in question are by far more common, constant, universal, and useful. In short, the bolding is idiosyncratic, and appears to be based on false assumptions about how important mentioning these particular classes is. But if you think it's so mysteriously critical, I'm not going to waste my time trying to stop you from bolding them. - Josh

The text changes you made were an improvement over my copy edits and made the "need" for bolding less obvious. Still, I think it is generally a good idea to bold the major subdivisions (s.l.) of a taxon (and this is done elsewhere) as these are essentially technical terms (see Technical Terms) at this level. Whether they appear in the taxobox or not is immaterial; whether they are "stable" or not is immaterial. The bolding sets them out as both important and technical in this article; separate from older subdivision names which are technical but now unimportant in this article. Also the taxon should be repeated as part of the bolding - Marshman 16:49, 13 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Problems with list of most speciose families[edit]

With regard to the list of most speciose families, according the Bayer & Kubitzki, Malvaceae, in Kubitzki et al, "The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants V" (2003), Malvaceae (sensu APG) has more than 4300 species, which would put it ahead of the 7th entry on the list; the Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (linked at the article) says 4225. I'm not editing the article, as species counts from different sources may not be comparable. Note also that if Apiaceae (Umbelliferae) and Araliaceae are merged (as has been proposed) the combined number of species in nearly 5000. Stewart R. Hinsley,, PS: Lamiaceae, per Angiosperm Phylogeny Website, has 7173 species. The old Scrophulariaceae was speciose enough to qualify for the list, but it's been chopped into smaller pieces.

I see no problem with editing the Malvaceae in at this time. I think the point of that part of the Wikipedia article is not to have exact, comparable numbers (those can go in the family articles with proper citations and other notes), but to give the reader a sense of how plant diversity is distributed among the families. - Marshman 00:01, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)
For what its worth, no family (other than perhaps the likes of Ginkgoaceae or Amborellaceae!) can ever have an exact number of species cited, as there will always be valid differences of opinion between different botanists as to whether various taxa are distinct at species rank or not; it is best to cite ranges from highest to lowest among reputable authors. A give-or-take of 10-15% difference between authors is quite normal (e.g. the 600-650 total I've cited at Pinophyta). - MPF 08:32, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)
You are right. Although I would accept such figures as we cite as always only approximate, we certainly could either state that fact or give a range as you suggest. The nice thing about a range is that edits will tend to be made to only one of the numbers at any given time. And yeh, you temperate-zoners would change that to Mallow family. The only mallow I've seen is a "False Mallow" ~ 8^)- Marshman 03:51, 16 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I guess that just reflects the temperate origins of the 19th century botanists who named all the families - the family name is usually cited from the name of the type genus, in this case Malva, as this is the one genus that by definition can't be transferred to another family (or if it is, the old family name disappears, like Taxodiaceae). On the same grounds, I guess coffee family for Rubiaceae should be changed to madder (Rubia) family, against any possibility that any botanist ever decides that Coffea doesn't belong in the Rubiaceae. - MPF 11:28, 16 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Common names are common names. I'm opposed to setting rules regarding common names (otherwise the cease to be "common" names). If other than the type Genus is used commonly for a common name, that is what we should go with (or include more that one). Otherwise we would have the poa family instead of grass and the cyperus family instead of sedge. What you are calling the "usual" practice is the rule for establishing the scientific family name. - Marshman 16:38, 16 Sep 2004 (UTC)
But equally, calling the Xaceae the 'y family' if y is no longer in the Xaceae is risky - whereas calling it the 'x family' remains safe. That's what I was thinking - MPF 17:25, 16 Sep 2004 (UTC)
As said, there is no standard for vernacular names of families. If you were to go for x family you have to lose "daisy family" - daisy, unqualified, is Bellis, not Aster, Aster being Michaelmas daisy or just aster. In some cases you can use terms like legume family (Fabaceae), composite family (Asteraceae), umbellifer family (Apiaceae) or labiate family (Lamiaceae); but there are problems in that the family bounds could be changed, e.g. ISTR classifications in which composites were broken into more than one family. OTOH, dead-nettle family for Lamiaceae is less than ideal as well. Other possible usages include aroid, bromeliad, gesneriad and palm families, where we have vernacular names which correspond to the families as a whole. Stewart R. Hinsley

If they're any use, figures from The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening (but note they are Cronquist taxonomy):

  1. Asteraceae: 21,000 species
  2. Orchidaceae: 17,500
  3. Fabaceae: 16,400
  4. Poaceae: 9,000
  5. Rubiaceae: 10,400
  6. Euphorbiaceae: 7,950
  7. Malvaceae: 1,550
  8. Cyperaceae: 3,600
Also . . .
Lamiaceae: 5,600
Liliaceae: 4,640 (includes several other families now usually split off)
Scrophulariaceae: 4,450
Myrtaceae: 3,850
Ericaceae: 3,350
Apiaceae: 3,100
Rosaceae: 3,100

You give no date for this source, so I cannot see how we could use it reliably. - Marshman

Sorry, 1992, so it is 12 years old now and starting to show it :-) MPF 17:25, 16 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Addition of material from 1911 Encyclopedia[edit]

I guess, other than the perhaps considerable work it might take to update this massive amount of material in an article that need not be the center of all the various sub parts, my biggest problem is that expounding to this extent on the various subjects under "angiosperms" is a bit redundant with the articles that are intended to be where such expansion takes place. I do see value in having such an approach (I think it works quite nice in the article Hawaii, for example), so I'm not blanket opposed to it; but it will require some careful pruning to get readers to move on to the "main" articles if subheaded subjects are over-written here. - Marshman 01:52, 3 Nov 2004 (UTC)


Why are there two articles presenting essentially the same information, "Magnoliophyta" and "flowering plants"? Shouldn't the material be combined and one of them redirect?

Magnoliophyta is a Redirect page? - Marshman 19:14, 15 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Accented Greek characters in Wikipedia[edit]

Actually, this is a browser issue. If you use Firefox those polytonic Greek characters show up correctly. See the discussion page under Talk:Greek language. It's unfortunate that Internet Exploder doesn't handle this better, but IMHO it would be a mistake to go through Wikipedia removing these characters.

Why is the basic description of Angiosperm so weird?[edit]

Flowers are not organs! Seed is not contained in flowers, but in fruits! I don't feel like cleaning up information this basic, but this looks wrong. Brya 16:33, 23 September 2005 (UTC)

You are right, it needs tightening up - Marshman 17:20, 23 September 2005 (UTC)
Agreement! Wow! Brya 20:50, 23 September 2005 (UTC)
C'mon. I know there are some hard asses here, and I might even be one on occasion, but when you (Brya) are right, you are right ! %^) I just did a quick "correction" so feel free to advise or change as you see fit - Marshman
Thank you. We will see, I have 'met' only a few wikipedians. I made some changes (in the first few sentences). The rest of the page could do with some attention, but in good time. How is this so far? Brya 16:39, 24 September 2005 (UTC)
Looks ok. Couple of minor grammatical things I will change (later), but the approach is just fine. - Marshman 17:47, 24 September 2005 (UTC)
Thank you. Yes it is hard to get the grammar right, while keeping it short and simple: I suspect the wording can be improved. The law of diminishing returns applies: for every bit of extra readability achieved more effort is required.
I put in quite a bit of work in getting the errors out of the "Classification" part. This was rather bad, and in violation of the ICBN. I suspect here too wording may still be improved, but this is as much as I can do at one go, at the end of a long day. Brya 19:58, 24 September 2005 (UTC)
Sorry to be a pain, but the 'classification' section still doesn't make sense - in fact it now contradicts itself! See below for more details. -- 07:50, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

Is this article the same as Broadleaf?[edit]

I was redirected here from Broadleaf, but the content of this article makes no indication that broadleaf is an alternative name for this topic. We must either break this redirect, or add broadleaf to the first sentence.

Well, broadleaf plants (really "broadleaf trees" are a reference to forest trees that are not conifers (=needle-leaf trees). While perhaps not the best place to redirect, it is correct in the sense that almost all broadleaf trees are flowering plants (but not all flowering plants are broadleaf trees). We can look for a better place to redirect to (like forest maybe?), but your suggestion assumes all redirects go to a subject containing your original search word, which is not the case, not necesary, and not desirable as a generality in my opinion. - Marshman 21:09, 27 January 2006 (UTC)
I've put it back to flowering plant, as 'broadleaf' is a term meaning a flowering plant with broad leaves, as opposed to conifers or grass, etc. Redirecting it to forest is wrong, as one can also have e.g. broadleaf weeds in a lawn or wheat crop. It might be better redirected to dicotyledon, as monocotyledons are not usually considered broadleaf plants (tho' some, e.g. aroids, probably would be). Or maybe better yet, a page of its own. Ideas welcome. - MPF 10:47, 10 May 2006 (UTC)
It would be a good idea to have a small paragraph in the article explaining this. Richard001 23:58, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
I know of two usages for broadleaf - as a term for dicotyledonous trees, contrasted with conifers, and as a term for dicotyledonous weeds, contrasted with monocots. Dicotyledon would seem the best redirection target, unless it's split between tree or forestry and weed, or given its own entry. Lavateraguy 19:39, 20 June 2007 (UTC)
  • I'm not sure about all of you people, but growing up around farming, broadleaf almost always refers to broadleaf weeds (which I think is what Lavateragyuy was referring to when he said 'dicotyledonous weeds'), something this is generally undesirable and is often killed with herbicide. It seems to me that a disambiguation page is the appropriate solution here. There are at least four things broadleaf can refer to and I think broadleaf weed could probably merit a page in its own right, considering the amount of herbicide used to address it. Any thoughts?--Mergi 20:11, 8 October 2007 (UTC)


Could this picture be included in the artice?

Flower in Monatan De Oro.JPG

--BorisFromStockdale 00:53, 28 January 2006 (UTC)

In general it is better to identify the plant and then include the picture in the article on that plant. This article is too generic to just include pictures of plants that have flowers beyond some very good representative examples. Also visit Wikimedia to see where your picture fits in there; that exposes to others that may be seeking what you have. - Marshman 20:20, 30 January 2006 (UTC)

Reason for angiosperm dominance?[edit]

It seems I remember from back in my school days that angiosperms became so prevalent because they reproduced sexually, perhaps giving them a better chance to evolve and adapt by mutation than hermaphrodite plants? Perhaps someone who has this knowledge can expand on it in the origin section, I'd love to know the reason behind it! --Fxer 16:06, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

They usually make fruit (dry like peanuts, or fleshy like apples,strawberrys etc.), so this helps to protect the seed. The seeds provide it with nutrients. The flowers attract insects and other animals to help with sexual reproduction, and they have pollen, which can be carried great distances on the wind to the next plant.

Vessel elements are present in the vast majority of angiosperms and have contributed to their dominance. This should be mentioned. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Treebearded (talkcontribs) 06:22, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

1911 EB stuff (again!)[edit]

I've hidden (<!-- --> tags) the 1911 EB paragraphs titled "Internal structure", "Vegetative organs", "Fertilization", "Embryology" and "Fruit and seed" - since they were added a year and a half ago, no-one has made any significant attempt to clean up and update them (and barely even wikilink anything!). They are so out of date that I suspect they'd be better off deleted and re-written completely. Thoughts, anyone? - MPF 00:17, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

  • The language of the EB 1911 material is slighly esoteric - but there are definatley some things in there that are basic features of flowering plant biology that are not defined in the article otherwise. I will have a go at making the content more digestible, since this is a really basic concept that an encyclopedia should cover.--Peta 00:30, 17 May 2006 (UTC)
More than 'slightly'!! I'd agree there's content in it which is valuable, but I suspect editing/updating it is going to be more bother than re-writing afresh. But by all means have a go! - MPF 00:40, 17 May 2006 (UTC)
Trimmed. It really could use a pi to show the differences in the vascular anatomy - whicle the text is not hard to understand, it would be easier to understand with a diagram.--Peta 01:01, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

This article should also mention vessel elements, most angiosperms have them (gymnosperms don't)and they are a significant factor in the dominance of angiosperms —Preceding unsigned comment added by Treebearded (talkcontribs) 06:19, 21 June 2008 (UTC)


I don't understand the systematic relationship between magnoliophyta, magnoliophytina and their classes. Which are the flowering plants: magnoliophyta or magnoliophytina? Could someone please describe this in the article? Thanks very much. --Eleassar my talk 12:20, 6 November 2006 (UTC)


I propose we merge the information in the Angiospermae article here: It has a lot of useful information explaining the multiple possible names for the division: This is good, and would be useful in the lead. I doubt this is particularly controversial, but it seemed polite to ask first.Adam Cuerden talk 08:55, 26 November 2006 (UTC)

Agree (and remove POV suprageneric italics when doing so) - MPF 13:14, 26 November 2006 (UTC)
Yes, and merge the monocots one into the monocotyledons article, while we're at it. KP Botany 23:15, 26 November 2006 (UTC)
I think they should be merged to Angiospermae —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 07:03, 14 December 2006 (UTC).
agree, but there should be a section discussing the taxnonamic names and ranks that have been applied to this group (with authorities), so that the article doesn't continue to get questions like the one posted below. --EncycloPetey 22:02, 1 January 2007 (UTC)

Magnolia as representative genus?[edit]

Is there any rationale as to why Takhtajan, Cronquist, Dahlgren, and Thorne use Magnolia as the base genus for the division/class name, as opposed to any other flowering plant genus? -- 15:33, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

I assumed it was because their classification systems make the Magnolia their basal group (order?) of plants. However, assumptions aren't that useful. Anyone with a clear answer? As for EncycloPetey's comment about section on names, yes. KP Botany 22:28, 1 January 2007 (UTC)

Magnoliophyta, angiosperms[edit]

Why is this article in both categories?! --Eleassar my talk 21:53, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

That's because the Class Taxon for angiosperms has more than one name, and the experts are still bickering as to which one is correct. Personally, the one I remember learning in class is Angiophyta, but I've also seen Angiospermae, Anthophyta, and Magnoliophyta in a few different places. There are probably a few more alternative names that I can not think of off hand. -The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 06:41, 8 December 2009 (UTC)

Classification history garbled[edit]

From that time onwards, so long as these Gymnosperms were, as was usual, reckoned as dicotyledonous flowering plants, the term Angiosperm was used antithetically by botanical writers, but with varying limitation, as a group-name for other dicotyledonous plants

The above sentence makes little sense and completely contradicts the rest of what is said. Perhaps rather than "from that time onwards", the writer means "for a brief period thereafter"? "these Gymnosperms" is too unspecific for the conclusion of a paragraph discussing a succession of different uses for the word - which Gymnosperms?

Perhaps there should be a division between 'history of' and 'current' classification, or if not, then perhaps this paragraph needs to be rewritten more clearly? The chronological narrative needs to be much clearer. I would do it myself, but I'm not confident that I have understood the original intention well enough, and don't know enough to write a new history myself.

-- 07:59, 6 April 2007 (UTC)


I had never heard the term "Magnoliophyta" before, and when I was redirected to this article, after seeing no mention of it in the first paragraph, my eyes alighted on the infobox and the picture of the magnolia. I jumped to the (at the time) obvious conclusion that "Magnoliophyta" was some taxonomic term specific to magnolias, which it now seems is not the case.

I wonder if it would be better not to use magnolia as an example here, and/or explain "Magnoliophyta" in a few words in the opening paragraph for the benefit of people who have been redirected here? At the moment the term is not mentioned until some way down the page in the middle of a fairly dense passage. Matt 16:26, 22 April 2007 (UTC).

Don't they have anything about filament? This page is very informative and all, but what about filament? I don't see it.

Yes, I can certainly see how it would be confusing. If the image is to be used I'd suggest moving away from the lead/taxobox area. Richard001 09:13, 19 June 2007 (UTC)


I notice this term redirects here, but the page doesn't mention it at all. Is it a synonym for angiosperms? Richard001 09:10, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

This issue is already discussed further up this talk page. The problem is that broadleaf doesn't match well to taxonomic categories. Lavateraguy 09:19, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

Various flower colors and shapes box[edit]

The box of flashing flower pictures is very distracting (and annoying) for anyone reading the text. It would be better removed and replaced by a single still photo, or maybe the individual photos could go in separately. --Graminophile 21:35, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

I've moved it down to the diversity section - the top was flooded with images and the lower half had nothing. A collage picture of several different families may be a better idea. Richard001 06:34, 22 July 2007 (UTC)

Edit Question[edit]

This paragraph seems to contain unneccecery information:

"In most taxonomies, the flowering plants are treated as a coherent group. Usually this takes the form of a taxonomic grouping, or taxon, which is assigned a rank. For taxa at a rank above the rank of family Article 16 of the ICBN allows either a descriptive name or a name formed from the name of an included family (that in turn is based on a generic name). The most popular descriptive name has been Angiospermae (Angiosperms), with Anthophyta ("flowering plants") a second choice. These names are not linked to any rank. The Wettstein system and the Engler system use the name Angiospermae, at the assigned rank of subdivision."

I would like to edit it to something like this:

"In most taxonomies, the flowering plants are treated as a coherent group, generally a taxon. The Wettstein system and the Engler system use the name Angiospermae, at the assigned rank of subdivision. The most popular descriptive name has been Angiospermae (Angiosperms), with Anthophyta ("flowering plants") a second choice. These names are not linked to any rank. "

but I'm not sure I understand the point of it enough to just go ahead and do it. Any feedback?

Helikophis 18:58, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

I went ahead and made the change.

Helikophis 21:38, 21 July 2007 (UTC)

Most Diverse Families[edit]

The most diverse families of flowering plants, in order of number of species, are:
  1. Asteraceae or Compositae (daisy family): 23,600 species
  2. Orchidaceae (orchid family): 21,950 species
  3. Fabaceae or Leguminosae (pea family): 19,400
  4. Rubiaceae (madder family): 13,183
  5. Poaceae or Gramineae (grass family): 10,035
  6. Lamiaceae or Labiatae (labiate family): 7,173
  7. Euphorbiaceae (spurge family): 5,735
  8. Cyperaceae (sedge family): 4,350
  9. Malvaceae (mallow family): 4,225
  10. Araceae (aroid family): 4,025

This has been mentioned before, but this is out of date. Orchids, as far as I know, are now considered the most diverse plant family. I was under the assumption that Poaceae was second, but I'm not as sure of that one. Anyways, I'm sure that Orchidaceae is first by most modern reckonings. Indeed, the Orchid article is in conflict with this list. Is there a better, newer source available, would synthesizing a list from the latest statistics violate Wikipedia:No original research, and if not, might it be a good idea to remove the list if it is obsolete?? --Vlmastra 02:54, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

Estimates (that's all they are) of the number of species of orchid vary widely - see, for example One problem is disagreement on what's a species and what's an infraspecific taxon or less. Consequently figures from different sources are incomparable. (Another problem is disagreement on familial boundaries.)
I took the figures from the Angiosperm Phylogeny Website, which is the best single source I know and is a recent source, but even in this case the figures are likely to have been collated from multiple sources. It may be inaccurate, but out of date is not a correct characterisation. Lavateraguy 10:57, 31 July 2007 (UTC)
At any rate, that list should have a source cited as the order in which the families are placed and their respective numbers of species (not to mention family circumscriptions; I assume "Fabaceae" is s.l.) do vary widely from one reference to another. MrDarwin 13:52, 31 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes, sources are very important when the same information can come from a wide variety of sources, and differ from source to source, such as even the taxonomy of the plants we discuss. Most current articles I've read placed the Orchidaceae first, but if you're using Stevens at MoBot, I'd go with him doing the latest research, but please do reference it. KP Botany 18:03, 31 July 2007 (UTC)
Stevens is already in the references, so anyone who understands the mechanics of citations can link in the figures for 9 of the families thereto. The figure for Rubiaceae comes from Kew Scientist 30, in a short note on the World Rubiaceae Checklist Project, which references (the Kew website seems to be down at the moment). Lavateraguy 18:33, 8 August 2007 (UTC)
Well, I haven't figured out the mechanics of citations, so feel free to link. KP Botany 18:41, 8 August 2007 (UTC)
I was implicitly saying that I hadn't figured it out either, so we need a 3rd party. Lavateraguy 18:52, 8 August 2007 (UTC)
I was afraid of that, but thought I'd hope otherwise. Another botany editor will take care of it. KP Botany 19:14, 8 August 2007 (UTC)

Hyacinth tree[edit]

Is it a flowering plant? -- Carol 07:29, 4 January 2008 (UTC)

Without 'interrupting' wikipedian style artists who are interested in flowering plants -- Hyacinth is a disambiguation and does not list a tree as an option. Another image of grape hyacinth. Only common names which make it difficult for categorization at commons -- where there are a lot of photographs of both flowering plants and of Magnoliophyta many of which are not 'Hyacinths' (quoting from the description of the grape hyacinth image). The ranking of 'important' to the plant project makes me wonder if it causes people both within the plant project and without to be more concerned about genus and species articles and not so much about these 'impotent' articles. Is it a case of reverse psychology and this ranking system accidentally reduces the value of the upper levels of the importance tree?
Just a few thoughts. No harm in thinking. -- Carol 08:03, 4 January 2008 (UTC)
Heh. What does it mean to be in the category of To do, priority 1 (Top)? And sorry, every time I save this, I see something else which is completely incredible here. -- Carol 08:06, 4 January 2008 (UTC)
Hyacinth tree doesn't seem to be a term in widespread use, or with a consistent designation. There's scarcely any hits from Google; one image appears to be a Laburnum, and another page gives it an alternative name for Thermopsis villosa or carolineana. I can't identify the plant on this page identified as a hyacinth tree, but it looks an odd plant to be given that name - a lilac (Syringa), for example, would make more sense, if one were to assume that a hyacinth tree is a tree with inflorescences similar in shape and size to those of a hyacinth. Lavateraguy (talk) 13:16, 4 January 2008 (UTC)
The placement of the Israeli wheat field under the heading of Economics is quite funny. Is it an accurate representation of the Plant Project? I ask this because (in my limited experience) that kind of economic often seems to tend to make more accurate or more funny (whichever the goal is) things, in this case articles. The images used for this article are not much of either funny or accurate (with the exception of that wheat field, perhaps). From what I gather from my last few days of experience here is that what the economics has done is to cause people, many from the Plant project, to be more interested in (metaphorically speaking) how clean my house is and not investigate their own house before expressing their opinion and their freedom to edit. So, more directly asked here, do you think the Jews wanted or intended to give their wheat field to such a situation? And feel free to use the phrase 'Encyclopedic value' or 'Encyclopedic content' whenever possible to explain the situation here at flowering plants, one of the important plant project articles. -- Carol 21:17, 4 January 2008 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by CarolSpears (talkcontribs)

Cleanup on Section Two[edit]

There seems to be a display problem in the "Evolution" section. The third sentence of the seventh paragraph currently reads,

| title = Biogeochemical evidence for the presence of the angiosperm molecular fossil oleanane in Paleozoic and Mesozoic non-angiospermous fossils | author = David Winship Taylor, Hongqi Li, Jeremy Dahl, Fred J. Fago, David Zinniker, and J. Michael Moldowan | journal = Paleobiology | pages = 179–190 | volume = 32 | issue = 2 | date = March 2006 }}</ref>"}}.

I assume that someone was attempting to create a link or something, and that it didn't go well. Could someone figure out what this person was trying to say and tidy it up a little?

That problem was fixed five minutes after it was introduced. That you observed it several hours later suggests that you may be getting your version from an out of date page cache somewhere. Lavateraguy (talk) 20:26, 11 May 2008 (UTC)

Ecological niche?[edit]

Niche is something of a contested term, but in ecological terms I believe it refers to all the environmental factors which influence an individual. As such a niche can not be empty and can not be broadened as this article suggest. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Treebearded (talkcontribs) 06:11, 21 June 2008 (UTC)


Anthophyta is commonly used, fide Google, as a synonym of Angiospermae (Magnoliophyta, etc). It's counterintuitive, but the usage of anthophyte and Anthophyta differs significantly. (A disambiguation page for Anthophyta pointing here and at anthophyte might be a sensible idea.) I think that Anthophyta be put back here, but a citation to the primary literature for that usage would be nice. Lavateraguy (talk) 13:34, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

Hmm, I guess you may be right, although (1) a lot of people don't pay attention to fossils, in which case the distinction may disappear (a google search for "Anthophyta Bennettitales" will show examples where Anthophyta includes these basal fossils), and (2) angiospermae gets a lot more google hits than Anthophyta. The 2008 paper I cited at anthophyte doesn't use either term as such, but "anthophyte clade". Perhaps under synonyms for this article we should say "Anthophyta (see also anthophyte)"? Not too keen on a disambiguation page, but I can certainly see the case for having Angiosperm mention anthophyte and/or Anthophyta somehow. Kingdon (talk) 14:55, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
Part of the anthophyte hypothesis is that Gnetales is the sister group (among clades with living representatives) to angiosperms. (Molecular data has gymonosperms monophyletic, and, often, Genetales embedded in conifers.) So the distinction remains in the absence of fossils. Your suggestion of "Anthophyta (see also anthophyte)" seems to hit the spot. Lavateraguy (talk) 15:07, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

Several major current botany textbooks use the name "Anthophyta" for the flowering plants. These include the Bold, Alexopoulos, & Delevoryas Morphology of Plants and Fungi (note that Delevoryas was a paleobotanist!) and the Raven, Evert, & Eichhorn Biology of Plants (which is arguably the leading botany textbook in English). "Anthophyta" is also listed among the synonyms for the Angiospermae in the 2007 Cantino et al. paper where Angiospermae is redefined under the PhyloCode.

I too have seen many discussions of the "anthophytes" and "anthophyte clade" in reference to a larger group that includes fossils, and sometimes the gnetophytes as well. However, I have never seen the "divisional" name Anthophyta applied to that group, despite the implied connection. --EncycloPetey (talk) 16:23, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

Well, my current thinking is that we can disregard this for the purposes of the article (we shouldn't make readers wade through too much about names and the history of classifications, and this area hasn't really settled down fully), but I can point to American Journal of Botany. 1999;86:326-332 where it says "Although these authors concur on the assignment of the Bennettitales to the Anthophyta, the phylogenetic position of the Bennettitales within the Anthophyta remains controversial". Kingdon (talk) 18:02, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
For clarification, which can we disregard for the purposes of the article? The name Anthophyta, or the ambiguity with the more broadly defined group? --EncycloPetey (talk) 18:59, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
The latter, although by now it is verging on "I don't care any more" :-). Kingdon (talk) 01:39, 10 July 2008 (UTC)

Wrong citation[edit]

The Classification section cites a Palmer, Soltis, and Chase article for the number of species in each group, but the linked reference is entirely about the origin of major lines of algae and plants via endosymbiosis and other large scale issues. It does not count any counts of species within the eight angiosperm groups. --EncycloPetey (talk) 23:20, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

OK, I found it. The information is hidden only in a single figure in the paper; we ought to specifically meantion Fig.2 in the citation; I'll add that now. --EncycloPetey (talk) 23:29, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
I don't think {{cite journal}} has a syntax for this; I think the best solution might be to put the figure number (or page number) outside the template invocation. The main reason I don't routinely cite page/figure numbers is that it doesn't fit so well with multiple uses of the same ref tag (each to a different page). Still, I understand the problem you found, of not knowing where in a paper (or book!) to look. Kingdon (talk) 01:39, 10 July 2008 (UTC)
In this case, I've added it parenthetically as part of the page number, since the same figure is repeatedly referred to for species counts. The "proper" way to do this would be to have a separate Notes and References section, but that method is more common for arts or humanities articles and gets messy for scientific articles. --EncycloPetey (talk) 06:31, 10 July 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, but "pages" is not for the page number you are citing; it is for the page numbers of the whole article, or the page number of the first page. At least, that's how I read the documentation for {{cite journal}}. Now, whether User:DOI bot or anything else will actually get confused, I don't know. There is also a style guide question of whether a human reader would care about the distinction. Maybe it isn't a big deal to use pages either way.
As for the other problem, about multiple references to different pages, I agree that separate Notes and References sections provide a pretty good solution. My doubts on that are not so much about science versus humanities as such, but about whether maintaining the separate sections is so error prone that as an article gets edited you end up with things like notes which refer to references which are gone, or references which no longer have anything pointing to them. Well, and making the reader look back and forth between the two sections. Kingdon (talk) 13:41, 10 July 2008 (UTC)
Any time in the past the I have brought issues like this to the citations template discussion pages, I've been given "workaround" solutions, and was advised to add the information under the wrong parameter to do so. I have yest (out of at least three major problems pointed out) to have someone say "Well, then let's get the template fixed to cover that," so I have no illusions that a positive solution would be forthcoming this time either. --EncycloPetey (talk) 16:41, 10 July 2008 (UTC)

I have tried to add Bruce Cornet's published findings of fossil evidence Balanophoracea in Triassic coal deposits. These keep being edited. I think it is important that a discussion include Cornet.[edit]

Mikems (talk) 14:49, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

Bruce Cornet? You mean the guy who found an "alien triangular robotic probe" in Ordovician rocks? Hesperian 23:11, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

Well, I can see you're skeptical. But remember that the calculus was invented by someone who spent a lot of time studying the Book of Revelation and the seven-headed dragon and devising time charts for the apocalypse. Just because a botanist says he has taken a ride or two in a flying saucer doesn't disqualify him from doing science and publishing. Heck, I wager to say a lot of scientists play Santa Claus, talk to their dogs, and their kids believe in the tooth fairy. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Mikems (talkcontribs) 00:43, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

We're comparing Bruce Cornet to Isaac Newton now? But you're quite right: being a fruitcake does not disqualify him from publishing. So do get back to us when he has succeeded in publishing this work in a scientific journal, as opposed to on your website. Hesperian 00:49, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

Well he has, in Vasanthy, G., Cornet, B., and Pocock, S.A.J., Evolution of prosangiosperms during Late Triassic, proangiosperms during Late Trias Geophytology 33 (1 and 2) 99-113 (2004) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:37, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

That article is a perfectly acceptable source... but it contains no mention of Balanophoraceae; on the contrary, it is about proangiosperms, whereas Balanophoraceae is quite derived. Furthermore the findings in this paper are broadly consistent with the accepted timeline, whereas you're presenting a counter-theory. And one can hardly consider it fair to present these as Cornet's results when he isn't even the primary author.

The specific claim you're inserting is that there is evidence that Balanophoreae arose in (or before) the Triassic. Show me a reliable source that supports this claim (not your website).

Hesperian 02:06, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

Why I'm sure something here must be inaccurate[edit]

I, for one, learned plant taxa with ranks (Domain (Always Eukarya for plants): Kingdom (Always Plantae for plants): Phylum (AKA Division): Class: Order: Family: Genus: Species) in Biology 111. What is with all the unranked clades? Somebody here needs to do some more research. These taxa ARE ranked. Let's just accurately figure out how. -The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 06:33, 8 December 2009 (UTC)

Actually, the recent Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classifications don't have ranked taxa between order and class or division. So we have division Magnoliophyta (or whatever) including Mesangiospermae including eudicots including core eudicots including Pentapetalae including rosids including malvids including order Malvales. There is a recent paper proposing ranks for some of these taxa, but it compresses the ranks greatly compared to past practice (if I recall correctly is pushes flowering plants down to a subclass), rather than raising the ranks of green algae taxa.
But I agree that it's not clear why flowering plants was put down as unranked. Lavateraguy (talk) 10:17, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
A lot of unranked taxa would mean that the ranks were disputed rather than non-existent, technically speaking. (There are also groups such as protostomic animals that are polyphyletic and therefore not taxa at all and so rightfully unranked, but still talked about because they have some physical characteristic in common, in that case a "first mouth" that develops earlier in the blastocyst than the anus does. Such groups are frequently the logical exact opposites of true taxa. In the aforementioned example, the opposite of a protostome would be a deuterostome, an animal with a "second mouth" that develops later in the blastocyst. As it happens, the Superphylum Deuterostoma includes the Phyla Echinodermata and Chordata, the latter of which includes the Subphylum Vertebra.) Back to the Phylum (or Division if you insist) Magnoliophyta, I should think there would be a paper like the one you mentioned near the end. I can't help but think it strange that unicellular green algae are now thought to share a kingdom with true plants, which are multicellular. It wouldn't surprise me if that were the cause of all the commotion when it comes to plant taxonomic ranks.
We all knew the so-called Kingdom Protista was a false taxon and that we had to get rid of it someday, but it leaves difficulties in figuring out the taxonomy of such things. There are also these organisms called chaonoflagellates, which gave rise to the Kingdom Animalia just as green algae gave rise to the Kingdom Plantae. So, it beats me as to why green algae are thought to be members themselves of the Kingdom Plantae to which they gave rise, whereas choanoflagellates are understood to be members of a separate kingdom from which the Kingdom Animalia diverged. (Kingdom Amoebozoa?) Granted, the exact choanoflagellate from which the very first animal (which would have been a small sponge) speciated is now extinct, but so is the exact green alga (which I guarentee was freshwater) from which the very first multicellular plant (which I would guess to be a small, completely submerged, otherwise liverwort-like organism) speciated. (By the way, I would be willing to bet that the small sponge and underwater liverwort that were the very first animal and the very first multicellular plant are also now extinct.) Anyway, some more new discoveries are perhaps needed to clear up all this. -The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 14:56, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
The paper I mentioned turns out to be referenced in the article - it's Cantino, Philip D.; James A. Doyle, Sean W. Graham, Walter S. Judd, Richard G. Olmstead, Douglas E. Soltis, Pamela S. Soltis, & Michael J. Donoghue (2007). "Towards a phylogenetic nomenclature of Tracheophyta". Taxon 56 (3): E1–E44.
A taxon is unranked if the authors haven't assigned it a rank; there is no need for there to be a dispute on the rank. There are only so many ranks in the Linnaean system, even when modified to include things like Cohort and Legion. Consequently it is quite possible to end up with more nested taxa than there are available ranks, and this leaves some taxa umranked. For example the family Malvaceae is divided into 7 subfamilies. The subfamilies are grouped into two taxa - Byttneriina and Malvadendrina - both of which are unranked. Between Malvadendrina and the subfamilies Malvoideae and Bombacoideae is another unranked taxon - Malvatheca. There are two more unranked taxa - Core Malvoideae and Eumalvoideae - lying between the subfamily Malvoideae and the tribes Hibisceae, Malveae and Gossypieae. Even with infrafamily and supertribe, you can't fit Malvadendrina, Malvatheca, Core Malvoideae and Eumalvoideae in there, and if you push the tribes down to infratribe you've got no place from the current subtribes and generic alliances. Some people want to do away with ranks altogether - see Phylocode. Dinosaur systematics is another field that makes extensive use of unranked taxa.
As you may recall the original Linnaean plant kingdom include bacteria, fungi, and a wide variety of protists, as well as land plants (embryophytes). The concept has been narrowed. But there are now 3 defensible altenative clades with which to equate the Kingdom Plantae - Archaeplastida (organisms with primary chloroplasts), Viridplantae (green algae and plants) and Embryophyta (land plants). The concept that a kingdom must be either multi-cellular or uni-cellular is not tenable. Fungi have both unicellular and multicellular representatives; chromists (Kingdom Chromista) have both unicellular and multicellular representatives; red algae have both unicellular and multicellular representatives; green algae have both unicellular and multicellular representatives. It turns out to be the case that green algae are paraphyletic with respect to land plants, so if land plants were to be ranked as a kingdom you'd end up with several (perhaps 9) green algal kingdoms.
Animals are part of a group known as Opisthokonta, which also includes fungi, nucleariid amoebas, fonticulid slime molds, icthyosporeans, corallochyrtrids, capsasporid amoebas, ministeriid amoebas and choanoflagellates. Amoebozoa is thought to be the sister group to this. The Kingdom Choanozoa was proposed to hold all opisthokonts other than fungi and animals, but as this is a paraphyletic group I expect that this will not meet with general enthusiasm. Between Opisthokonta (unranked) and Kingdom Animalia are two other unranked taxa - Holozoa and Filozoa. Lavateraguy (talk) 15:57, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
Most red and brown algae are unicellular, but I'm well aware that not all are. The same is true for most green algae. What is more important than the number of cells is their general structure. One can distinguish plants, animals, and fungi from each other by the basic structures of their cells. Naturally, the be-all-and-end-all of taxonomy is the genome. It indicates the levels of similarity necessary for the various taxonomic levels. Such similarities are, of course, brought about by means of common ancestry. At any rate, green algae are paraphyletic because multicellular plants arose from them. So, here is my remaining question. The very first sponge (which was the common ancestor of the Kingdom Animalia and therefore the very first animal) speciated during the Ediacaran Period from a now-extinct colonial choanoflagellate species, or so we learned in Biology 110. Would this not make choanoflagellates paraphyletic while excluding the Kingdom Animalia? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:40, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
If by brown algae you mean phaeophytes, they are almost entirely multicellular.--Curtis Clark (talk) 04:19, 9 December 2009 (UTC)
Living choanoflagellates are not, as far as is known, paraphyletic with respect to animals. One study has ministeriid amoebas closer to animals than are choanoflagellates (and the similarity of sponge choanocytes to choanoflagellates has been said to have been overstated). While it is a reasonable assumption that the earliest animals evolved from a colonial opisthokont, I would refrain from concluding that this was a choanoflagellate - fungi evolved multicellularity more than once, so perhaps filozoans evolved coloniality more than once. Lavateraguy (talk) 21:38, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
Unless the sources are going to agree about the ranks, I'm not sure what to do in taxoboxes other than the unranked_* parameters. I'm not sure creating a distinction between "unranked" and "variously ranked" would help the reader. Kingdon (talk) 18:35, 15 December 2009 (UTC)

Testing Flower[edit]

testing flower plant new section include in this articles —Preceding unsigned comment added by Hari krishu (talkcontribs) 11:39, 4 January 2010 (UTC)

Cladogramm update[edit]

Hey, any reason not to make the Cladogramm in the clasification section more detailed? Eg along these lines. The info on the relationships not being resolved seems to be outdated to me. Regards Sean Heron (talk) 20:28, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

Inadequate context tag[edit]

Probably the best placed one I've seen in a while. This article never says what an angiosperm is, or it buries it. The lead should start with that. --Kleopatra (talk) 04:40, 1 December 2010 (UTC)


Sorry to raise what looks like an old issue again, but I've just been redirected to this article after typing in broadleaf as the only search term into the Wikipedia search box. Additionally, if one types broadleaf tree into the search box a list of results is currently returned featuring this article as the first item. I have no expertise in this subject area, but as a native English speaking layperson it strikes me as odd that a search for the first term leads directly here with no disambiguation page for clarification, and the search for the second term returns the results described, again with no disambiguation. Terms such as broadleaf and broadleaf tree are in common usage, amongst laypeople at least (with reference to this subject area), and I was trying to discover what they actually mean in order to verify that I have the correct French translation (or correct translations) for a university project. The article Broad-leaved tree does appear in third place in the search results for broadleaf tree, but a disambiguation still seems appropriate to me. Wikipedia is currently a little bit confusing on the matter in my humble opinion as a non-expert on this topic. Admittedly, a google search for broadleaf tree does currently return the appropriate Wikipedia article. Beejaypii (talk) 15:12, 4 November 2011 (UTC)

I've added redirects for broadleaf tree and broad-leaf tree, as regional orthographic variants. Lavateraguy (talk) 17:36, 4 November 2011 (UTC)
Ah, simple as that. Thanks for your response. I didn't want to make any changes myself having read earlier discussions about the term broadleaf on this page, and not having any specialist knowledge of biological classification. Beejaypii (talk) 18:23, 4 November 2011 (UTC)


Should the comparison not extend to liverworts (9,000 species fide WikiPedia), hornworts (~100) and gymnosperms (approaching 1000)? Lavateraguy (talk) 10:00, 11 October 2012 (UTC)

I just picked the top two in the table at Plant#Diversity for the sake of supporting the comment in the lead that flowering plants are the most diverse group. I would certainly suggest adding gymnosperms; not sure about the other bryophyte groups which are less well known to most general readers I suspect. Peter coxhead (talk) 15:11, 11 October 2012 (UTC)

Reproductive turnaround[edit]

I believe there is a misconception in this article. Angiosperm pollen may germinate within within minutes of landing on a receptive stigma; cf gymnosperm fertilisation delay of circa 12 months. The rapid turnaround of the angiosperm pollen production-fertilisation cycle per se is not the explanation for angiosperm dominance. Reductio ad absurdum, in 150 million years the angiosperm is still only one year ahead of the gymnosperm game.

The key issue for Wikipedia is not whether this is a correct partial explanation for the dominance of angiosperms, but whether reliable sources say that it is. Unfortunately this is a poor article in terms of its referencing, so we can't tell whether sources do claim this. Peter coxhead (talk) 09:57, 15 November 2013 (UTC)
Found one citation, which points to some others, but yes indeed, that material needs careful re-editing if someone wants to take on the task, perhaps adding a definition of "programic phase" somewhere in the wiki. Sminthopsis84 (talk) 16:12, 15 November 2013 (UTC)

Well-intentioned edit removed (may be useful info IF it's explained more)[edit]

"The distinction between angiosperms and gymnosperms was already made by Theophrastus (4th or 3rd c. BC), although differently as it is made today." Greene, E. L. & Egerton, F. N. (ed.) (1983). Landmarks of Botanical History: Part 1. Stanford: Stanford University Press, p. 210, [1]. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:24, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

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Phylum, folks[edit]

Granted, it is from a pharmacological journal. That being said, this paper calls the group of all flowering plants the Phylum Magnoliophyta, not the unranked Magnoliophyta. Here: Furthermore, it is from last year, so that eliminates the "oh, but that's decades old" objection that one might otherwise hear.

Also, the more recent literature definitely favors the name Magnoliophyta rather than "Angiospermae" and other such alternatives. The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 18:48, 10 July 2017 (UTC)

Please refer to the variuos Angiosperm Plant Phylogeny papers that are the basis of the most current classification system for flowering plants, and which are the basis for what we use on Wikipedia. --EncycloPetey (talk) 00:24, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
I did, and here is the entire Abstract of APG (2016), copied and pasted verbatim.
"An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (APG) classification of the orders and families of angiosperms is presented. Several new orders are recognized: Boraginales, Dilleniales, Icacinales, Metteniusiales and Vahliales. This brings the total number of orders and families recognized in the APG system to 64 and 416, respectively. We propose two additional informal major clades, superrosids and superasterids, that each comprise the additional orders that are included in the larger clades dominated by the rosids and asterids. Families that made up potentially monofamilial orders, Dasypogonaceae and Sabiaceae, are instead referred to Arecales and Proteales, respectively. Two parasitic families formerly of uncertain positions are now placed: Cynomoriaceae in Saxifragales and Apodanthaceae in Cucurbitales. Although there is evidence that some families recognized in APG III are not monophyletic, we make no changes in Dioscoreales and Santalales relative to APG III and leave some genera in Lamiales unplaced (e.g. Peltanthera). These changes in familial circumscription and recognition have all resulted from new results published since APG III, except for some changes simply due to nomenclatural issues, which include substituting Asphodelaceae for Xanthorrhoeaceae (Asparagales) and Francoaceae for Melianthaceae (Geraniales); however, in Francoaceae we also include Bersamaceae, Ledocarpaceae, Rhynchothecaceae and Vivianiaceae. Other changes to family limits are not drastic or numerous and are mostly focused on some members of the lamiids, especially the former Icacinaceae that have long been problematic with several genera moved to the formerly monogeneric Metteniusaceae, but minor changes in circumscription include Aristolochiaceae (now including Lactoridaceae and Hydnoraceae; Aristolochiales), Maundiaceae (removed from Juncaginaceae; Alismatales), Restionaceae (now re-including Anarthriaceae and Centrolepidaceae; Poales), Buxaceae (now including Haptanthaceae; Buxales), Peraceae (split from Euphorbiaceae; Malpighiales), recognition of Petenaeaceae (Huerteales), Kewaceae, Limeaceae, Macarthuriaceae and Microteaceae (all Caryophyllales), Petiveriaceae split from Phytolaccaceae (Caryophyllales), changes to the generic composition of Ixonanthaceae and Irvingiaceae (with transfer of Allantospermum from the former to the latter; Malpighiales), transfer of Pakaraimaea (formerly Dipterocarpaceae) to Cistaceae (Malvales), transfer of Borthwickia, Forchhammeria, Stixis and Tirania (formerly all Capparaceae) to Resedaceae (Brassicales), Nyssaceae split from Cornaceae (Cornales), Pteleocarpa moved to Gelsemiaceae (Gentianales), changes to the generic composition of Gesneriaceae (Sanango moved from Loganiaceae) and Orobanchaceae (now including Lindenbergiaceae and Rehmanniaceae) and recognition of Mazaceae distinct from Phrymaceae (all Lamiales)."
Not once does it make a case for the name "Angiospermae" over Magnoliophyta. Of course I tried to refer to the full text, but at that point I ran into a paywall.
Furthermore, here is an exact quote from Article III of the Melbourne Botanical Code.
"The principal ranks of taxa in descending sequence are: kingdom (regnum), division or phylum (divisio or phylum), class (classis), order (ordo), family (familia), genus (genus), and species (species). Thus, each species is assignable to a genus, each genus to a family, etc."
Notice: It does not say that an unranked listing is preferable to the rank of Phylum (although it does allow for Division as a synonym for Phylum, much to my surprise). The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 01:25, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
You did not need to paste the Abstract. I have a reprint of all three articles, as do most members of WP:PLANTS who coordinate on this issue. The abstract is the summary. You would need to refer to the article text of APG II and APG III to see the names used above the rank of order. You do not need to quote the Code either. I studied the Code under two of the authors of the most recent revisions. If you wish to propose that WP:PLANTS adopt a different system for classification of angiosperms, you would need to take that issue up with the entire group, and state whose classification system you believe supersedes that of the APG III.
Also, you have misunderstood the purpose of the citation following a scientific name. That citation identifies the author who originally published the name for the group, so a citation for a scientific name will always be an older citation. --EncycloPetey (talk) 02:50, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
I'm well aware that Abstracts are always mere summaries of the full paper. Again, I ran into a paywall.
That being said, the system I would consider preferable to APG would be that used by ITIS (which, by the way, lists the group of all angiosperms as "Class Magnoliopsida"; in which case Class rank rather than Phylum):
Why? Because ITIS is dedicated to systematics for all life rather than just plants in particular. At least attempting to use systems as similar as possible (across all Domains and Kingdoms with respect to lower taxa in each), even with respect to the semantics of taxonomic ranks, is a way of reinforcing the point that there is but 1 Ultimate Clade. To put it another way, absolutely all life is monophyletic if you trace back far enough.
Viral taxonomy begins at the rank of Order (making Orders of viruses more or less equivalent to Kingdoms or even Domains of true organisms), and that makes more sense because viruses are technically non-living and are more than likely polyphyletic besides (each Order having come into existence independently).
Anyway, leaving ranks still widely accepted in animal taxonomy to be unused in plant taxonomy (namely: Phylum, Class, and occasionally Order) has the side effect making plants and animals (as a whole) seem more alien to each other than they really are. Luckily, ITIS (unlike APG) does in fact fill in the ranks in use for animals for plants as well. So I will make that case later, after my Thesis Defense tomorrow (on crayfish behavior and pharmaceutical-based water pollution, by the way). The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 04:22, 13 July 2017 (UTC)
ITIS is not always accurate, APG is written by a collaboration of many angiosperm researchers, and the one that is used by the vast majority of plant researchers writing on the topic. I do not understand your long rant on the perceived closeness/distance of plants and animals, and it seems irrelevant to the subject at hand to be honest.--Kevmin § 19:59, 13 July 2017 (UTC)
There are different proposals for the ranking of major plant taxa. Rather than adopt one when there isn't a consensus it seems reasonable enough for WikiPedia to use the informal clade names of APG. (If I recall correctly Magnoliopsida may refer to flowering plants, but it may also refer to dicots, and also to a much narrow grouping (the magnoliids of APG) Lavateraguy (talk) 23:54, 13 July 2017 (UTC)
Actually higher ranks, and indeed ranks in general, are increasingly ignored in many areas of taxonomy, whether animal, plant or whatever. As is well understood, trying to fit all the important clades into the limited number of Linnean ranks simply doesn't work, and often means demoting taxa far below their traditional rank. (A good example in the English Wikipedia can be found by studying the disputes over the ranking of birds. 'Dinosaur editors' give birds a low rank; 'bird editors' insist on the Class Aves. Both positions can be justified, but they aren't compatible. One result is that most articles on extinct birds, such as Apatornis, don't have a taxon for birds in their taxoboxes, whereas articles on extant birds use Class Aves. ITIS uses Class Aves and the non-monophyletic Class Reptilia, but the latter only works because ITIS doesn't include extinct species. ITIS is far from being an example of a biologically justified classification.) For plants, keeping to the APG system is by far the best compromise. Peter coxhead (talk) 07:16, 16 July 2017 (UTC)
An issue that could be resolved by calling Reptilia a Grade Class, as opposed to simply "Class" which implies a clade. Of course that's outside of our purview to solve in the actual literature.
Anyway, it is mostly plant Articles that ignore ranks for these reasons. Escherichia coli does use the ranks of Domain, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, and Species. One can't deny that there is a convenience in having those terms next to actual taxa, especially to distinguish the formal name of a taxon from what Lavateraguy above pointed out were "informal clade names." The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 03:44, 24 July 2017 (UTC)
Also, I am well aware that APG draws from a large number of experts, but so does ITIS. Despite the attempt by Kevmin to imply otherwise, that is. The Mysterious El Willstro (talk) 03:49, 24 July 2017 (UTC)
ITIS may well draw from experts, but it's very clear from their system that it does not reflect the consensus in some areas of the tree of life, as per my example of the use of Class Reptilia. The consensus classification by experts for angiosperms is that of APG which we use here. Peter coxhead (talk) 09:31, 24 July 2017 (UTC)
Please refer to the variuos Angiosperm Plant Phylogeny papers that are the basis of the most current classification system for flowering plants.--AlfaRocket (talk) 19:55, 27 August 2017 (UTC)

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