Has abstracted for insertion in his sterility chapter [Variation 2, ch. 18], FM's observations of plant's pollen being poisonous to itself.
Occurrence of mimetic plants.
Colouring of Planariae.
Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.
My dear Sir
I received a week ago your letter of June 2. full as usual of
valuable matter & specimens. It arrived at exactly the
right time, for I had just completed, & was enabled to correct a pretty full
abstract of your observations on the plant's own pollen being poisonous. I have inserted
this abstract in the proof sheets in my chapter on sterility, & it forms the
most striking part of my whole chapter. I thank you very
sincerely for these most interesting observations, which however I regret that you did
not publish independently. I have been forced to abbreviate one or two parts more than I
wished—viz. about the fertility of the Epidendreae & on the advantage
to the plant of the pollen being poisonous, for I was not quite sure that I understood
parts of your letter. The seeds which you have sent are very
valuable. Your letters always surprize me from the number of
points to which you attend. I wish I c
Do not forget to aid me, if in y
with cordial thanks for y
- f1 5591.f1The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from Fritz Müller, 2 June 1867.
- f2 5591.f2See letter from Fritz Müller, 2 June 1867.
- f3 5591.f3CD described Müller's observations in Variation 2: 134--5, in a section headed, `On certain hermaphrodite plants which, either normally or abnormally, require to be fertilised by pollen from a distinct individual or species'.
- f4 5591.f4CD refers to discussions in the letter from Fritz Müller, 1 January 1867.
- f5 5591.f5Müller had sent seeds of two species of Coccocypselum with his letter of 2 June 1867; he also sent seeds of Oncidium flexuosum resulting from a cross with a Cyrtopodium. These are still in a packet glued to the letter.
- f6 5591.f6See letter from Fritz Müller, 2 June 1867.
- f7 5591.f7James Philip Mansel Weale evidently noted this resemblance in an excised portion of his letter of 7 July 1867 (see letter to J. P. M. Weale, 27 August .
- f8 5591.f8John Lubbock was a neighbour of CD's; he documented his discovery in `Note on the discovery of Planaria terrestris in England', Journal of the Linnean Society (Zoology) 10 (1870): 193--5. For CD's discovery of planarias in association with Vaginulus (a genus of slug) at Valparaiso, Chile, see Correspondence vol. 1, letter to J. S. Henslow, 24 July -- 7 November 1834; CD also mentioned finding planarias in the Brazilian forest in his Journal of researches, pp. 30--2. See also R. D. Keynes ed. 2000. He discussed the species he found, and their similarity to Vaginulus in `Planariae'.
- f9 5591.f9CD later decided that the bright colours of planarias and other `lower' animals, whether hermaphrodite or not, was not due to sexual selection (see Descent 1: 322).
- f10 5591.f10Müller's answers to CD's queries about expression have not been found, but they were evidently enclosed in the letter from Fritz Müller, [8 October 1867] (see n. 2 of that letter). CD had sent a copy of the queries with his letter to Müller of 22 February .