To Alfred Newton 29 March 
Down, Bromley | Kent
My dear Sir
Since receiving your letter of Oct. 21st.,1 I have been, & am still ill; but I managed to examine the partridges leg—2 the toes, & tarsus were frightfully diseased, enlarged & indurated. There were no concentric layers in the ball of earth, but I cannot doubt that it had become slowly aggregated, probably the result of some viscid exudation from the wounded foot.3 It is remarkable, considering that the ball is 3 years old, that 82 plants have come up from it—12 being monochot. & 70 dichot. consisting of at least 5 different plants—perhaps many more.4 The bird limping about during the autumn would easily collect many seeds on the viscid surface. I am extremely much obliged to you for sending me this interesting specimen.
I am, dear Sir | Yours very faithfully | Charles Darwin
Eighty-two plants have germinated from earth on wounded partridge’s foot.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4440,” accessed on 3 May 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-4440