Agronomy and Horticulture Department


Date of this Version



The American Naturalist, Vol. 48, No. 566 (Feb., 1914), pp. 87-115


Copyright 1914 R. A. Emerson


The inheritance of variegation has special interest and importance in genetics. It is with forms of variegation that the only two certainly known cases of non-Mendelian inheritance have had to do. I refer to Baur's experiments with Pelargonium, in which crosses of green-leaved and white-leaved forms exhibited somatic segregations in F1 that bred true in later generations, and to Correns 's work with Mirabilis, which showed green and white leaf color, to be inherited through the mother only. De Vries's con- ception of "ever-sporting" varieties was apparently founded largely upon the behavior of variegated flowers in pedigree cultures, from which he reached the conclusion that the variegated color pattern and the monochromatic condition arising from it as sports are non-Mendelian in inheritance. Correns, however, has shown that in Mirabilís jalapa the inheritance of these sports is distinctly Mendelian, and the results of East and Hayes indicate the same for Zea mays. In this paper I shall present data from maize and attempt to show how they can be interpreted in strictly Mendelian terms.