Sorbus leyana

This example of Ley's whitebeam is one of the genetic curiosities of the Genetics Garden. Through a complex reproductive process called apomixis, Sorbus microspecies can become fixed in tiny populations as the offspring are genetically identical. Wild representatives of Sorbus leyana are limited to perhaps twenty examples at a handful of sites in the Brecon Beacons. While the botany is fascinating, in early autumn it is the clusters of tawny orange fruits against digitate leaves which put this medium sized tree on the plant picks.
The Garden has a very important collection of Sorbus microspecies - for more see left.

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