Letter (WCP212.212)


Parkstone, Dorset.

May 19th. 1890

My dear Violet

We found the Gentians all right as you saw, but had to go a long way for them. They were lovely when open in the sunshine. The little bird-eye Primrose (Primula farinosa) was much more abundant, — almost as common as primroses at Godalming, & there were also lots of wood-anemones all over the woods fields & hills, beautiful purple & yellow violets, splendid orchises & quantities of cowslips.

It is no good sending you young plants as they want so much attention to make them [2] recover and grow. You had better buy a plant or two in Croydon market in pots. You will get some I dare say at 3d. or 4d. each or roots of common things at 1d./each. The quickest seed to come up is Virginian Stock. If sown in a sunny place & carefully thinned & weeded as they grow they will flower in about 8 or 10 weeks after sowing, but even that, the quickest possible, will be not much use to you. You must get wild flowers or a pot plant or two. If you dig up carefully a buttercup [3] or campion, & plant it shading from the sun for a few days, they will grow & flower soon. Even dandelions would be useful & daisies.

When you have Aunt Bessie’s1 "explanation" let me know, and we will then see what we shall see.

I am going to the Vaccination Commission2 on Wednesday & begin Exam. papers3 on Thursday. Willie4 is going to Hurst from Saturday to Tuesday. We had not heard about Mrs. Benson.

Your affectionate Papa | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]

Jordan, Bessie, sister of Wallace’s wife, Annie Mitten. <http://wallacefund.info/wallaces-genealogy> [accessed 1 December 2020]
The Royal Commission on Vaccinations, 1889-1896.
To remain financially solvent, Wallace worked grading government examinations. Wikipedia. <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_Russel_Wallace#Financial_struggles> [accessed 27 November 2020]
Wallace, William Greenell (1871-1951). Son of ARW.

Please cite as “WCP212,” in Beccaloni, G. W. (ed.), Ɛpsilon: The Alfred Russel Wallace Collection accessed on 1 March 2024, https://epsilon.ac.uk/view/wallace/letters/WCP212