BEN # 129
aceska at CUE.BC.CA
Mon Mar 11 11:03:36 EST 1996
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No. 129 March 11, 1996
aceska at freenet.victoria.bc.ca Victoria, B.C.
Dr. A. Ceska, P.O.Box 8546, Victoria, B.C. Canada V8W 3S2
NATIVE PLANT SOCIETY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA - INAUGURAL MEETING
Friday March 15, 1996 9:30 - 4:30
Abbotsford Agriculture Centre
1767 Angus Campbell Road
The formation of this group is perceived to be developmental and
consensus driven, thus there is a reluctance to outline a struc-
tured agenda. ... Please come with an open mind and a plenitude
of ideas and commitment. ...
Phone to Diane Gertzen (604-930-3309, fax 604-775-1288) for more
information [or registration?].
DAVID LYALL (1817-1895)
From: Dr. W.A. Weber <weberw at spot.colorado.edu>
I don't know whether you know more about Lyall than this, but I
had a request from a lady in Evergreen who has a friend by the
name of Lyall, and wonders whether David Lyall was an ancestor.
I was able to dig up this wonderful obituary by Hooker and
wonder whether you would like to send it out in the newsletter.
In the American books on our botanical history he is simply not
mentioned except in the introduction to Piper's Flora of
Washington. I think field botanists in America need to know more
about this fellow.
The following is the obituary of David Lyall published by J. D.
Hooker in J. Bot. 33: 209-211. 1895.
David Lyall was born in Kinkairdineshire, June 1st, 1817, and
after a long period of active service as a medical officer and
naturalist in the Royal Navy, he retired in 1873, and died at
Cheltenham, March 2nd, 1895, with the rank of Deputy Inspector-
General of Hospitals and Fleets and a Good-Service Pension. Dr.
Lyall received his medical education at Aberdeen where he had
his M.D. degree, having previously been admitted a Licentiate of
the Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh. As was not unfre-
quently the case with young Aberdonian medical men, he sought to
improve his medical knowledge, and threw himself early on his
own resources, by undertaking a journey to Greenland as surgeon
to a whaling ship; and this no doubt led to his being selected,
immediately after entering the Royal Navy in 1839, for service
under Sir James Ross in the expedition being fitted out for a
scientific voyage to the Antarctic Regions. He was appointed
Assistant-Surgeon of H.M.S. 'Terror' (the consort of H.M.S.
'Erebus') under Commander Crozier, to which duties Sir James
(the Captain) Ross added those of forming botanical collections.
During the voyage which did not return to England till late in
1842, his conduct was officially reported to the Admiralty as
"meriting the highest commendations." The writer of this notice
was a brother officer of Dr. Lyall's during that expedition (an
intercourse that led to a life-long friendship) and has added
his tribute to the value of his services in the following pas-
sages: "To him were due many of the botanical results of the
Expedition" (Fl. Antarctica vol. 1, p. xii). "He formed a most
important herbarium amounting to no less than 1500 species." He
also, during the five winter months of 1842, when the ships
remained in Berkeley Sound, made a "beautiful collection of
interesting Algae", which formed "an important addition to
Antarctic Botany" (op. cit., part 11, 215). On this expedition
was found, in Kerguelen Island, the remarkable plant named by
the writer Lyallia [kerguelensis, Caryophyllaceae].
Shortly after the return of the Antarctic Expedition, Dr. Lyall
was appointed to the Mediterranean, where he served in several
commissions as Assistant Surgeon till 1847, when he was
promoted, and at the recommendation of Sir William Hooker, was
selected as Surgeon and Naturalist to accompany Capt. Stokes in
H.M.S. 'Acheron' on the survey of the coast of New Zealand.
Here, devoting himself to the collection of the lower orders of
plants especially, he amassed the most beautiful and extensive
herbarium in these branches of botany which had ever been found
in the islands, besides making considerable discoveries in
phaenogamous plants, and collecting some of that had been pre-
viously gathered by Banks and Solander. Among one of his many
important discoveries in this survey were that of the monarch of
all buttercups, the gigantic white-flowered Ranunculus Lyallii,
the only known species with peltate leaves, the "water-lily" of
the New Zealand shepherds.
In 1852, Dr. Lyall was appointed Surgeon and Naturalist to the
'Assistance', one of the squadron sent out to the Arctic Regions
under the commander of Sir E. Belcher, in search of Sir John
Franklin. When in this service he received an acting order as
lieutenant in command of one of the sledges employed in the
search, and further, as senior medical officer of the expedi-
tion, he was appointed Superintending Surgeon of the 'North
Star', when the crews of the 'Assistance' and 'Pioneer'
retreated to that ship. During this Arctic Expedition Dr. Lyall
made good collections at every point visited, from Disko to
Polar Islands. A list of these is published in the Journal of
the Linnean Society. It contains about ninety phaenogams and
vascular cryptogams and a large number of musci, etc. Exclusive
of Greenland, this is by far the largest herbarium ever formed
in the American Polar Islands, and exceeds the sum of those of
all previous expeditions in the same regions; but, as was to
have been expected, no novelties rewarded his labours. On his
return he was appointed to the 'Pembroke', Capt. Seymour, under
whom he served throughout the Baltic Campaign of 1855 [Crimean
War], and was present at the bombardment of Sveaborg [Suomen-
linna, then in Russian hands].
After a short period of home service in the 'Royal William' at
Devonport, Dr. Lyall was commissioned as Surgeon and Naturalist
to H.M.'s surveying ship 'Plumper' and afterwards to the
'Hecate', under Captain (now Admiral Sir George) Richards,
employed in the delimitation of the sea boundary between Great
Britain and the United States in the Pacific Ocean. From this
his services (in 1858) were transferred to the Land Boundary
Commission, under Col. Sir John Hawkins, R.E., which he accom-
panied in its survey of the boundary line between British Colum-
bia and the United States possessions, from the Gulf of Georgia
to the summit of the Rocky Mountains. From this exploration Dr.
Lyall brought home a magnificent herbarium, one of such impor-
tance that, at the earnest representation of Sir William Hooker,
he was borne on the books of H.M.S. 'Fisguard' at Woolwich as
Staff Surgeon, a vicarious appointment that allowed of his
residing at Kew for the purpose of arranging, reporting on, and
distributing his collections. The results are published in a
valuable contribution to the Linnean Society* which contains an
account of the regions traversed, from the sea to 8,000 feet
alt. of the Rocky Mountains, where the various zones of vegeta-
tion in British Columbia are for the first time indicated and
scientifically portrayed. Immediately after the conclusion of
his labours at Kew, Dr. Lyall was appointed Surgeon to Pembroke
Dockyard, at that time a permanency, and when the regulations
affecting this branch of the service (the dockyard) were changed
in 1868, he accepted home appointment to H.M.S. 'Trincomalee'
and 'Daedalus' consecutively till 1873, when he retired. Lat-
terly he resided at Cheltenham, where shortly before his death
he met with an accident, the breaking of an arm, from which he
never wholly recovered.
Dr. Lyall's only other published contribution to science was a
paper on the habits of a remarkable New Zealand bird, the
Kakapo, Strigops habroptilus**. He married in 1866 to Miss F.A.
Rowe, daughter of Dr. Rowe of Haverfordwest, by whom he had
three children who survived him. He was elected a Fellow of the
Linnean Society in November, 1862.
* Account of the botanical collections made by David Lyall,
R.N., M.D., F.L.S. Journal of the Linnean Society vii (1863):
** Proc. Zoological Society xx (1852): 31-33.
From: Loren Russell, Corvallis, OR <loren at PEAK.ORG>
originally posted on Alpine-L the Electronic Rock Garden
Society <ALPINE-L at HEARN.NIC.SURFNET.NL>
A couple of days ago I had the opportunity to go over a thesis
proposal for a graduate student in forest resources. Her inter-
est is in the way reproductive systems of various native forest
herbs determine their response/recolonization following fire,
logging, or other disturbance.
What was striking to me was her comment that faculty have been
advising students away from studies of herbaceous plants because
"you can't grow them." It seems that some previous local work
with the likes of trilliums, erythronium, baneberry, asarum, and
such failed becasue they don't behave like douglas-fir. And so
this was seen as a death trap for theses! [I was consulted via
"buzz" from a workshop I presented for the local Native Plant
Society last spring.]
I pulled out my usual resources -- Deno (1993), back issues of
the AGS and NARGS bulletins -- totally unknown to local fores-
ters (and botanists). Betsy's thesis proposal seems now to be
going through. Grey literature or not, the thesis advisor [him-
self a backyard nurseryman] was persuaded that "the little green
things" will germinate.
Another example of the isolation of scientists from our culture
was work, also at Oregon State University, on the reproductive
biology of the Umpqua population of Kalmiopsis leachiana (soon
to be K. fragrans, I understand). One of the students complained
that they had transplanted, with great care, a number of Kal-
miopsis, and that all of them promptly died. I told him: "Of
course, and why didn't you take cuttings?" Never heard of such a
thing. And hadn't seen even one of the many horticultural publi-
cations on this species (and this population).
Ref.: Deno, N.C. 1993. Seed germination theory and practice. 2nd
Edition. 242 p. Published and distributed by the author [Dr.
Norman C. Deno, 139 Lenor Drive, State College, PA 16801,
MYCOLOGICAL WEB PAGE UPDATE
From: Tom Volk <tjvolk at facstaff.wisc.edu>
originally posted on bionet.mycology
I have just updated my Mycology web page, whichh can be found at
the following URL:
Improvements include moving most of the inline images to other
pages, so the first page will load faster. There is a link to
over 800 of my images of fungi (currently under major reor-
ganization and revision) at a University of Wisconsin Gopher
site. There are descriptions and pictures of the fungi we work
on at the Forest Products Lab here in Madison, including a new
key to North American Armillaria species, including in-line
images. There are some miscellaneous in-line images of some
other fungi. There is also a bit of information about the Wis-
consin Mycological Society.
ONLINE MYCOLOGY NEWSLETTER ANNOUNCEMENT
From: Roy Reehil <reehil at servtech.com>
originally on bionet.mycology
I would like to share the address of our electronic club
newsletter with any interested mycologists. Included are stories
of local and national interest, a laugh, and a recipe now and
then. Link to NAMA/NEMF 96 Foray home page (new). Created by
Dave Fischer, VP of NEMF and organizer of last years NEMF foray.
Includes registration info, costs, faculty and location descrip-
Editor, Central New York Mycological Society Newsletter
Submissions, subscriptions, etc.: aceska at freenet.victoria.bc.ca
BEN is archived on gopher freenet.victoria.bc.ca. The URL is:
Also archived at http://www.ou.edu/cas/botany-micro/ben/
More information about the Plantbio