Seeking for plant taxonomist help!

I write this post to get in touch with someone or with an authorities in plant taxonomy, not to make changes to the iNat platform, but to see how to revive an old name in a well-known plant. We are facing an historical #drama, we just uncover and very old name but who was published in and lost old trip diary, this name was used just two time, and then forgotten, then this plant was described as a first, with a name used till today. We have the proofs and needed data to improve this name, but we would like to have some guidances, is this the place to meet a taxonomist in plants? :)

apologize if I’m pretty lost :P


Botany journals that accept taxonomic papers would be your best bet.

Is the name a scientific name or a common name ?

a scientific name. Now I think is a very innapropiate question, not sure why I was thinking lol

I’m no scientist. iNat relies on Kew’s POWO for scientific names. I’d think they in turn have ties with Universities in various countries throughout the world. You can get in contact with your local university. As I see it, the scientific name may need to be published with a time stamp. Just for example, like say description of this species was published in 1900, in a journal or book. When you mention diary, I’ve a feeling it is not published. Although the person involved might be a well known collector, or scientist. As said, I’m not scientist. I do not know beyond the basics how this may turn out. Maybe it is valid, rules are in place on how scientific names are published.

What is the name? Some of these situations are easily resolvable by going to primary sources while others represent truly forgotten names. Figuring out which is which often requires looking at the specimens that use those names. If there is no type specimen to refer to, it was probably invalidly published (exceptions have been made in some historical examples). [taxonomist speaking here, though not one familiar with the Flora of Chile]



The first step should probably be a careful examination of the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi and plants, available in English at (A Spanish translation is available in PDF through

In particular, I would start with Articles 29 and 30, which define “effective publication” for the purposes of the code. To be effectively published, a name must be used in printed matter distributed to the general public. So a name in a private diary or journal would not meet those conditions; however, if it was published and printed (e.g., many 19th-century scientific expeditions organized and printed their records) it would be effectively published.

Article 38 provides that to be validly published, a new name must be accompanied by some sort of diagnosis or description that distinguishes it from similar species, although in older works, this diagnosis can be extremely perfunctory, sometimes a single sentence or phrase.

I hope this provides some initial guidance. I’ll follow up by private message.


It would be good to know that scientific name in order to give you an answer that could be as most precise as possible.
In some cases there is no strict necessity to revive an old legitimate name but one can propose to conserve a later synonym.

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