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Darwin Correspondence Project

To W. C. Marshall   8 June [1874]1

I shd be greatly obliged if you would observe for me about what proportion of leaves of Pinguicula have insects adhering to them,—as whether a half—quarter fifth or tenth.—

It wd be of great assistance if the leaves with captured insects were folded up each separately in damp rags, & then all the little parcels sent me in tin box with a little damp moss by Post.— I shd thus know what sorts of insects are caught. Please to observe carefully whether the secretion from a caught insect ever runs down to the upturned edge of leaf, and is then deflected to either side along the channel formed by the upturned edge.

Secondly please observe carefully whether seeds of any plants ever adhere to the leaves, & in this case note whether they have excited much secretion.—2 I much want to know this, as I have ascertained that the leaves can absorb nutritious matter from seeds.— Any leaves with seeds ought to be folded up like those with insects & sent me, so that I may ascertain the kinds.— Observations on seeds wd be best made in 1, 2, or 3 months hence

Thirdly, in what kinds of [situation] does P. vulgaris grow., & what sort of plants grow near, the seeds of which would be the most likely to fall or be blown on the leaves.—

Jun 8th

D. B. Kent

Footnotes

The year is established by the relationship between this draft and the letter to ?, 8 June 1874 (see n. 2, below); William Cecil Marshall is confirmed as among the recipients by the relationship between this draft and the letters from W. C. Marshall, 30 August [1874] and 5 September [1874].
This draft text was used as the basis for letters sent to several correspondents (letter to ?, 8 June 1874, and letter to John Ralfs, [after 25 June 1874]; see also letter to W. T. Thiselton-Dyer, 9 June 1874 and n. 3). The other known versions of the letter omit the question about seeds exciting secretion; for Marshall’s response to that query, see his letter of 30 August [1874] (see also letter from W. C. Marshall, 5 September [1874]).

Summary

Asks what proportion of leaves of Pinguicula have insects adhering to them. Also, whether seeds of any plants ever adhere to the leaves, and in what situations does P. vulgaris grow.

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-9485F
From
Charles Robert Darwin
To
William Cecil (Bill) Marshall
Sent from
Down
Source of text
DAR 97: C61–2
Physical description
ADraft incomplete

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9485F,” accessed on 14 October 2019, https://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/letter/DCP-LETT-9485F.xml

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 22

letter