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By C. Ritchie Bell (auth.)

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Also, considerable data from studies of morphology, anatomy, cytology, physiology, genetics, ecology, and breeding structure can now be subjected to rapid statistical analysis by computers. The interest, and the problem, in most modern taxonomic work is in accumulating enough representative data to insure a valid conclusion. The amount of time involved and the insurmountable difficulty of getting adequate experimental material make it impossible to study all known plants. Only a very small, but hopefully representative, proportion of plants will receive the thorough study necessary for a relatively accurate and complete understanding of their evolution and present relationships.

De Jussieu, after the death of Bernard. The classification system itself had three main groups: the acotyledons, the monocotyledons, and the dicotyledons. The acotyledons included the algae, fungi, mosses, and ferns. The monocotyledons were subdivided on the basis of the position of the ovary: hypogynous (with the sepals, petals, and stamens attached to the receptacle just below the ovary, thus the ovary superior), epigynous (with the sepals, petals, and stamens attached on or above the ovary, thus the ovary inferior), or perigynous (the sepals, petals, and stamens arising from a ring of tissue, the hypanthium-or floral cup as it is sometimes called-around, but not attached to, the superior 34 PLANT VARIATION AND CLASSIFICATION Fig.

Hardin. 40 VARIATION PATTERNS 41 or "patterns" that make categories evident and classification possible. In many cases a given variation pattern is the result of the action of selective forces on an array of genotypes, and such variation would presumably have evolutionary significance. This variation may insure survival and lead to the ultimate improvement and spread of the organism, or it may be detrimental in some way and lead to the weakening and extinction of the organism. Other variation patterns might have little or no evolutionary significance.

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