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Home > Non-French items > Synonyms for cultivars names of the pomegranate (Punica granatum L.).


Publication : 2016.
Author : François DROUET.

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Synonyms for cultivars names of the pomegranate


(Punica granatum L.)




 I am interested in Punica granatum L. cultivars for about forty years and I am very glad to see that they know an increasing success with the fruits enthusiasts. I particularly noticed it during the last fifteen years. The knowledge of some of the rare pomegranate cultivars begins to spread among the general public. All around the world, public institutions, non-profit organizations, nurserymen and fruit trees collectors communicate about the most deserving of these cultivars. Rare pomegranate cultivars names more and more appear in press articles, Internet forums, Web sites, and, what is particularly satisfying, in nurseries catalogs.

This enthusiasm is nevertheless accompanied by a drawback that one must know and control: the existence of a rather high number of synonyms among the cultivars names. This synonymy has two sources. Fisrt, a same cultivar may have different names in two areas of the world, and, in some cases, in two regions of the same country. Secondly, it is an annoying habit for some of the American nurserymen to give an English name to those of the foreign cultivars of which names present a spelling rather difficult for them. Most often, the English name is not the translation of the foreign name but is chosen to create a commercial appeal.

I note that if the synonymy is rather important for the pomegranate cultivars, I have not really detected cases of polysemy. Except for a specific point: that of a cultivar name compound of several words which is shortened to a single word. Indeed, if the word which is left to designate the cultivar is present in several cultivars names, this generates a polysemy. The kept single word may designate several cultivars which are different. The typical example is 'Saveh', as we will see later in the article.

I would like to let you know my thought about the cultivars names written with the Latin alphabet when, in  their original form, they are written with a non-Latin alphabet (Greek, Cyrillic, Arab, Perso-Arab, Hebrew, Japanese etc.), or even with sinograms because it exists numerous Chinese pomegranate cultivars. This kind of cultivars is largely represented in the Punica granatum L. species because numerous countries which are part of the natural area of this species do not use the Latin alphabet. In the same case are some of the countries of which agronomic research institutes are creating many pomegranate cultivars for the commercial orchards.

I believe that for these cultivars names it does not exist a unique writing to be retained, because they may be pronounced or written (in the concerned non-Latin alphabet) of various ways from one region to another in their country of origin. Moreover, depending on the used transposition method into the Latin alphabet, the result may be different. At last, I must say that I am very lenient about the orthographic corruptions affecting the most difficult among these transposed names, because most often I must make me too several attempts before writing them properly. So, "iy" or "yi"at the end of the word, an "h" before or after a "k", a single "s" instead of two, a "c" for a "k" or the reverse, this is not very important... We just have to not exceed the level of orthographic corruption allowing everybody to understand which cultivar is concerned.

For the cultivars of the NCGR collection at Davis received from the Kara-Kala agronomic station (Dr G. Levin's collection), I have decided to strictly respect the cultivars names as they are written in the collection directory. Even if I have noticed that in the latter the spelling is sometimes different for two occurrences of a same cultivar. And if I also have noted that, for some cultivars, differences exist for the name spelling between the NCGR directory and the two Dr Levin's books (translated into English from Russian).

I list hereafter the pomegranate cultivars synonyms I know (alphabetical order). Of course, this list is not exhaustive. 

Angel Red: Smith. It is the name with which the cultivar was patented (US PP 16578 P3) before being distributed with the trademarked name Angel Red.

Bhagwa: Sunduri.

Bint-el-Basha: Bashaur, Bazzari, Baknuvi, Khashabi.

Cherabani: Cherab.

Devidisi: Camel's Tooth.

Eseili: Baladi.

Eversweet: Armchat. It is the name of the Lebanese cultivar which was patented, then distributed with the trademarked name Eversweet.

Favorite: Lyubimyi ---- The trademarked name Favorite was given by Jim Gilbert, nurseryman in Oregon, to a cultivar he imported from southern Russia in 1991. Jim Gilbert does not indicate the Russian name of the cultivar, but according to some American nurseries, in particular Edible Landscaping, it is the cultivar Lyubimyi. I point out that this cultivar is also present in the NCGR collection at Davis (Identifier DPUN 121), where it was received in 1999 from the agronomic station of Kara-Kala (Turkmesnistan).

Girkanskii: Miagkosemyannyi Chernyi ---- The cultivar Miagkosemyannyi Chernyi is not cited in the NCGR collection directory. But there is in this directory a cultivar with a close name: Miagkosemmyannyi Rozovyi (DPUN 139), which is distinct from Girkanskii (DPUN 149). The cultivars Miagkosemmyannyi Rozovyi and Miagkosemyannyi Chernyi are different. Dr G. Levin gives a separate description of  them and indicates that the second is a synonym of Girkanskii (Pomegranate, G. M. Levin, Third Millenium Publishing, pp.109-110, 2006). I have noted that Girkanskii is written Girkanskiy in the book (translated into English from Russian).

Gorda de Jativa: Gordo de Jativa, Jativa.

Granada: Grenada ---- This name is wrong because the cultivar was patented with the name Granada  (US PP2618 ; the patent has expired), but it is largely used in the USA. I point out that a cultivar with the name Grenada is present in the NCGR collection directory, at Davis (identifier DPUN 6). The name of this cultivar is stated "not verified". Also are present in the directory three cultivars named Granada, all with a different origin (identifiers : DPUN 172, DPUN 279 and PI 37817). For two of these cultivars, it is stated "not verified" for the name, and for the other it is stated "local name".

Hamod: Zaiti, Krari, Hushmashi, Grenadier Citronné.

Kara Bala Miursa : this cultivar is registered with the NCGR at Davis (identifier PI 483113). I point out that it is not a synonym of Bala Miursal (identifiant PI 483110). It is a selection (bud sport) of Bala Miursal, considered by Dr G. Levin as of higher quality than Bala Miursal: more intensive dark crimson color of the pericarp, darker color of arils and better flavor (Pomegranate, G. M. Levin, Third Millenium Publishing, page 30, 2006). Moreover, according to Dr Levin's opinion, Bala Miursal is a sortotype.

Larkin: Marianna.

Mellissi: Thlat-Bint-Basha.

Mollar de Elche: Mollar.

Mollar Rojo: MR-100 (Mollar Rojo is not a synonym of Mollar de Elche. It is a rather recent Spanish obtention for the commercial orchards).

Nikitski Rannii: Crimson Sky.

Paper Shell: Spanish Sweet.  

Purple Hear: Pink Ice, Pink Satin.

Ras-el-Baghil: Baghali, Ahmur, Himri, Battaki.

Romman Chouall: Romman Chouab.

Saartuzski: Saartuzski (Yalta) ---- Usually, when a name in parenthesis follows a cultivar name, it indicates a synonym. In the case of the Saartuzski cultivar, "Yalta" is not a synonym. The cultivar was received in 1982 at the Byron USDA center (Georgia) from the agronomic station of Kara-Kala (Turkmenistan), then transferred to the NCGR of Davis in 1997. It was registered in the collection list of the NCGR with "Saartuzski (Yalta)" in the "Name" rubric. In fact, Yalta is the origin of the cultivar in the Kara-Kala collection. It means that the cultivar was introduced to Kara-Kala from the Nikita Botanical Garden, founded in 1812 (Nikita being a small locality near Yalta, the well known town in Crimea). For me, the origin "Yalta" would have been mentioned in the "Source history" rubric of the cultivar descriptive notice, not in the "Name" rubric. I think that the cultivar name must be written Saartuzski, without "(Yalta)", because that creates a confusion.

Salavatsky: Russian.

Saveh: Shavar ---- This cultivar name is also a typical case of polysemy. The word 'Saveh' (an Iranian town) is part of several cultivars names: Alk Pust Ghermez Saveh (identifier PI 483098 in the NCGR collection directory at Davis), Entek Habi Saveh (PI 483100), Shirin Pust Ghermez Saveh (PI 483102), Tabestani Malas Biranden Saveh (PI 483105). I have encountered several cultivars simply named  'Saveh' by their owners. This shortened name obviously generates a polysemy...

Sumbar: this cultivar is registered with the NCGR at Davis (identifier DPUN 147). I point out that there is an other cultivar present in the directory which has the name Sumbarskii (DPUN 132). One may wonder if the two cultivars are synonyms. They were received from the agronomic station of Kara-Kala at the same date (27/01/1999) and their location codes in the Kara-Kala collection are different. So, I think that they are two distinct cultivars found in the Sumbar Valley, in Turkmesnitan.

Sirenevyi: Purple.

Trabels: Tripolitana.

Valenciana: Mollar Valenciana.

Zubejda: Zubejda (Denau) ---- Denau is not a synonym of Zubejda. It indicates the origin of the cultivar in the Kara-Kala collection, from which Zubejda was introduced in 1982 to the USDA center of Byron, Georgia (then transferred in 1997 to the NCGR of Davis). It was registered in the collection list of the NCGR with "Zubejda (Denau)" in the "Name" rubric. Denau (Russian), Denov (Uzbek), is a rather important town in the extreme south of Uzbekistan. At Denau, it existed an experimental agronomic station devoted to subtropical crops, where B. Z. Rosanov conducted selection works of cold hardy pomegranate cultivars, then of soft seeded pomegranate cultivars. B. Z. Rosanov was one of the Dr Levin's correspondents (Dr Levin was the curator of  the pomegranates collection at the agronomic station of Kara-Kala, Turkmenistan. This collection consisted of 1.117 accessions). For me, the origin "Denau" would have been mentioned in the "Source history" rubric of the cultivar descriptive notice, not in the "Name" rubric. I think that the cultivar name must be written Zubejda, without "(Denau)", because that creates a confusion.



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