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Proceedings of the International Plant Propagator's Society

Vol. 44

Title:
Plant Exploration in Hubei

Author:
Paul W. Meyer

pp: 519-521

Abstract:
In 1879 after ascending the Ygantze River as far as Inchang, plant explorer Charles Maries reported that all the Chinese species of any merit had already been introduced. His view was widely accepted for over 20 years. In fact, in 1899 when Ernest Wilson was dispatched in search of Davidia involucrata, on behalf of Veitch Nursery of England, he was instructed, "Stick to the one thing that you are after, and do not spend time or money wandering about. Probably almost every worthwhile plant in China has now been introduced" (Wilson, 1929). Fortunately, Wilson did not follow this charge too closely and in the course of his Asian journeys over the next 11 years, he introduced well over 1000 new plants and literally changed the face of Western gardens.

Today, a hundred years later, attitudes similar to those of the 1880s still prevail. Even in botanical gardens, many people feel that any temperate garden plant species of worth has already been collected and tested. Yet, in my travels in

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