Galanthus alpinus var. alpinus
5th March 2018
Galanthus alpinus has a complicated taxonomic history and the current arrangement
has emerged tentatively from the mists of time and text. The names G.alpinus, G. caucasicus
and G. bortkewitschianus are clearly allied, possibly overlapping entities.
At present G. alpinus and G. caucasicus seem to be (possibly partial) descriptions of the same taxon
and in that case, the name G. alpinus has priority.
Under that arrangement G. alpinus is a widespread but uncommon species
from the Caucasus, Transcaucasus and adjacent Russia and Turkey. Galanthus bortkewitschianus is a sterile triploid plant
found only in a single relatively tiny population in Russia. It is now treated as a distinct (and unusual)
variation within a larger species, as G. alpinus var. bortkewitschianus. As a direct consequence
all of the variability within plants across the rest of the range are referred to G. alpinus var. alpinus.
This is the one I grow. There probably aren't many clones in cultivation so it may be the only one anybody grows, who knows.
Almost certainly it has been selected as the clone that responds best in cultivation in the UK so it may not be entirely
representative of the species.