To John O'Shanassy   February 1859

Monthly report on the proceedings of the Gov Botanist and on the labours in the botanic and zoologic Garden for January 1859.1


Beyond carrying out the ordinary work of the season, we were employed in forming a new walk westward from the palm-house and laying drainlines along it. On the ground, formerly granted for the formation of the zoologic Garden, but for which we have now adopted the name "northern ground", an earth-and stone-wall has been thrown up for the consolidation of the fence, and the undulations in some parts of the lawns have been levelled. Seeds have been extensively collected, and parcels of them were dispatched to the Gov. Gardens of Kew, Liverpool, Brisbane and Bourbone. To each of the two latter localities went also a case of living plants, whilst one was received from Mr F. Bailey of Wellington and the shipment of two is announced from Brisbane. Some other interchanges have also been effected on a smaller scale. Botanical specimens recently secured have been transmitted to Kew, Vienne and Sydney for the public collections.

The departure of the "Victoria" to Cape Howe having been more protracted than was anticipated, the Gov. Botanist journey to that place has been postponed, partly however also in expectation of the arrival of the Alpacas pr "Goddess".

The fencing of the last portion of the zoolog. or northern ground will according to the contractors information be completed in the course of February. For new fencings in the southern reserve plans have been submitted, according to which a portion of the old fence will form together with the new ones the limits of roads and walks, to be lined with umbrageous trees, whilst cross-fences will divide the ground into various paddocks for the reception of animals. A plan for the enlargement of the aviary and forming a bower at it has been submitted to the Hon. the Chief Commissioner of public works and met with his approval.2 14 Canaries received their liberty and are since the last weeks seen in various parts of the garden, showing however the desired predeliction for the neighboorhood of their yet housed former companions. An application for a boat and a verandah has been made;3 both being absolutely required, the former to save time in superintending the work on the northern ground, the latter to mitigate the excessive heat of the low office-building at the summer season and its dampness, which proves so injurious to the valuable collections, during the winter season. The enclosure for the Russian trophie guns is completed and will be embellished with grass turf &c at the proper season.

The work on the herbarium has been continued and the new plants discovered on the M'Allister River have been examined. The Governor of South Australia has honored this office with the transmission of the plants, collected during Mr Babbage's expedition. These will be examined in spare hours and the Gov. Botanist solicits, that a short enumeration of them may be printed at the Gov. Printing Office and that 50 copies of this issue may be permitted to be sent to the South Australian Government.

Ferd. Mueller, M.D. & Ph.D.4

Registered, 8 February 1858.
Plan not found.
Application not found.

The attention of the Under Secretary, J. Moore, was drawn to the request in the last paragraph of M's report, and Moore commented on 9 February: 'Let him send in a Requisition and it will be approved'. For the published report, see B59.10.02.

See also J. Moore to M, 11 February 1859.

Please cite as “FVM-59-02-00d,” in Ɛpsilon: The Ferdinand von Mueller Collection accessed on 28 September 2021,