From Joseph Hooker   22 June 1872

June 22 /72.1

My dear Baron

I have several letters to thank you for, which I shall now proceed to discuss.

I have already informed you of the safe arrival of the noble Tree Ferns & of our having seen to their despatch to their destinations.2 The noble Dicksonia you have given us is pushing fronds. The Alsophila not yet but we do not despair of it. It is covered with a light canvas petticoat! to keep its flanks moist & stored in the most favorable place for growth.

Our Dicksonias are the wonders of the world, all owing to my never allowing a dead frond to be removed — & the great Todea retains its luxuriance, it having now some 300 fronds on it, wholly through my treatment. I have it stood in a shallow pan, surrounded with blocks of stone & ferns, backed by a layer of soil confined by cask staves.

I hope that you have passed your ordeal. I am far from the end of mine — Gladstone supports that Ayrton through thick & thin, & my friends are hitherto foiled in their attempts to get my correspondence which has been called for in both Houses of Parliament. The enclosed address will reveal to you my position, & so I need say no more.3

I shall take care that when you send me the live plants named after the D. of Buckingham (whose name I forget) arrive to send his Graces Gardener their share.4

I am delighted to hear that you have more Chatham Island plants, but disappointed that they contain no more novelty.5 Will no one ever go to Antipodes Bounty6 & Emerald Islands7?

I enclose Mr Baker's answer about the Fern.

We have just lost Mr Kingston a very active assistant in the Herbarium, who has died of the rupture of a blood-vessel in the Lungs.8

Thanks for the note about arillate Tiliaceae9 — a fact I knew well having often examined the aril of I think Echinocarpus in India — I cannot tell how I allowed such an oversight to pass in the Gen. Plant.10

The Rubiaceae went to press today, but will take some months to print — we can verify every quotation in the proof as well as Mss. from the works themselves.

Bentham has finished the Euphorbiaceae for the Australian Flora & is now at Calycereae for Gen. Plant. — the Compositae are all ready for press.

Can you send us your species of Hymenophyllum?11 The best way is to establish them on billets of Tree fern & nail them to the top of a Ward's case of plants.

Ever very sincerely yr

Jos D. Hooker












Letter bears the embossed emblem: 'Royal Gardens Kew'.
J. Hooker to M, April 1872 (in this edition as 72-04-00)?
Following this letter in the file are cuttings from The Times, 30 July and 9 August 1872, reporting the progress of Hooker's dispute with A. S. Ayrton, Chief Commissioner of Works. However, it is clear from the dates that these are not the address to which Hooker refers. See also MacLeod (1974).
See M to J. Hooker, 1 March 1872.
See M to J. Hooker, 24 April 1872 (in this edition as 72-04-24a).
Sub-Antarctic island groups south of the Chatham Islands.
A phantom island south of Macquarie Island, reported by a British sealing ship in 1821 but not found by subsequent searchers.
R. C. Kingston died on 21 June 1872.
See M to J. Hooker, 23 March 1872.
Bentham & Hooker (1862-83), vol. 1, p. 228.
See also J. Hooker to M, April 1872 (in this edition as 72-04-00).

Please cite as “FVM-72-06-22,” in Correspondence of Ferdinand von Mueller, edited by R.W. Home, Thomas A. Darragh, A.M. Lucas, Sara Maroske, D.M. Sinkora, J.H. Voigt and Monika Wells accessed on 25 September 2022,