Systematics of elms (Ulmus)

Our elm work comprises three major components: phylogenetics, nomenclature, and cultivar registration. We are using DNA sequencing to evaluate the classification of the genus and develop markers useful for identifying cultivars and wild species. There is need in the horticultural community for such tools, and our approach is to develop them in the context of the diversity of the entire genus of natural species. Our nomenclatural work is aimed at making sense of the more than 250 published names for a genus of what is estimated to be 40 or 50 species. A preliminary version of this checklist will be published or made available via a public database in the near future. Finally, we are updating two existing checklists of elm cultivars and assembling data on cultivars described since publication of the last synopsis (in 1995), pursuant to the Arboretum's role as International Cultivar Registration Authority for the genus Ulmus.

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