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Darwin Correspondence Project

From Francis Darwin   [23 November 1878]1

My dear Father

Many thanks for your pelargonium letter—2 I am not sure whether I said that the 3 mgrammes was not ash but only dry residue— I have some smooth leaves going on in water. Drops put on cleaned N. glauca & on Eucharis are blued.3

O. tropœoloides doesnt sleep at all to the eye & each cotyl only rose 7° at night.4 I will look for pulvinus. There is nothing like pulvinus at base of petiole of T. strictum.

T. resupinatum doesnt sleep5

I have put horse chestnuts to soak. Only 2 Sp chestnuts have roots which I have sliced. Two new horse chestnuts I have causticed6

The lunch is cooling   I will write a longer letter this pm & tell some ubbadubba7 news— I asked him what Baba had sent him & he made a smack. He calls Q piggy because of its tail

Yr affec | F D

All the strictums yet seen go left


The date is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter to Francis Darwin, [22 November 1878], and by the reference to the preparation of Spanish chestnuts (see n. 6, below).
Nicotiana glauca is tree tobacco. Eucharis is a genus in the family Amaryllidaceae.
Oxalis tropaeoloides is a synonym of O. corniculata var. atropurpurea (creeping wood sorrel); see letter from Francis Darwin, [before 22 November 1878] and n. 3.
For CD’s interest in the pulvinus and sleep in Trifolium strictum (upright clover) and T. resupinatum (Persian clover), see Movement in plants, pp. 116 and 118, and letter to Francis Darwin, [21 November 1878] and n. 2.
See letter from Francis Darwin, [before 22 November 1878] and n. 2. A note by Francis dated 23 November records that two Spanish chestnuts were ‘sliced with razor’ (DAR 209.5: 113).
Bernard Darwin. The letter has not been found.


Movement in plants: The power of movement in plants. By Charles Darwin. Assisted by Francis Darwin. London: John Murray. 1880.


Many thnks for the pelargonium letter.

Letter details

Letter no.
Francis Darwin
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 274.1: 43
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 11755F,” accessed on 1 June 2023,