Problem: It appears that there are several cultivars that are entered in First Class twice, under different names. Is this a mistake?

You are probably referring to some of the Russian cultivars. The International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants (which is the reference authority that we use for naming African violets) states: "When a cultivar appears in a publication using a different language from that of its original publication, the [name] may not be translated (it may however be transliterated or transcribed)." The ICNCP also states that transliteration to or from different alphabetic scripts, one of which employs the Roman alphabet, the standards provided by the current edition of the ALA-LC Romanization Tables published by the United States Library of Congress are to be used.

Therefore, when a cultivar such as is submitted for registration, it must be transliterated from the Cyrillic alphabet to the Roman alphabet, and registered as EK-Boginia Krasoty. The prefix EK stands for the hybridizer, Elena Korshunova, and "Boginia Krasoty" translates to "Goddess of Beauty" in English, but the translated name (EK-Goddess of Beauty) is not to be used for registration.

However, human nature being what it is, English-speaking growers tend to label their plants with the translated names because they are more familiar and easier to pronounce. But the "official" name is the transliterated one (EK-Boginia Krasoty), and the plant must be entered in a show under that name.

In order to make it easier for classification committees, a feature was added to First Class where some of the English-translated names are added to the list of names on the AVML tab. However, when you choose that name, the description at the right lists the transliterated name in the Name field. So if a grower presents a plant labeled EK-Goddess of Beauty, the classification committee will not need to find a Russian translator in order to determine its correct name. When the name EK-Goddess of Beauty is selected, the description at the right lists it with its correct name of EK-Boginia Krasoty. Also, if the AVSA Show Entries program is used with First Class, the correct name will be passed to the entries program.

One other note: This feature is also used for some other cultivars with characters that have diacritical marks, such as Boréal. Without that feature, if you typed "Boreal" you would get a match for Boreal Rose at the top of the list, while Boréal would be just above it on the list, scrolled out of sight. (That's because é comes before e when the computer alphabetizes the list.)

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