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Darwin Correspondence Project

To JDHooker   11 August [1864]1

Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.

Aug 11.

My dear Hooker

I am not very well & must write briefly just to thank you most sincerely for all the great trouble you have taken & for the information which is of the greatest use to me.2 I do not want Polygonum or any other Twiner3 & nothing except any tendril bearer of any family not seen by me. One answer has been omitted viz. whether Bignonia buxifolia is correct name.4 Wherever you look you will perhaps see whether B. speciosa & picta are distinct species; for in their foliage & tendrils they are wonderfully alike.5

You say that the Hanburya climbs “like any other Cucurbit”   if I do not hear to the contrary I will assume that this is an error & that it twines spirally. On the other hand, if it really has tendrils for goodness sake let me know as I must state the fact.6 I really think I shall give you no more trouble   with hearty thanks | yours affectionately | Ch. Darwin

Footnotes

The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from JDHooker, [4–]6 August 1864.
This question was not in CD’s memorandum to JDHooker, [24 July 1864?], although CD did ask for Bignonia specimens. Hooker identified the species as B. unguis; however, CD disagreed (see letters from JDHooker, 26 August 1864 and 30 August 1864, and letter to JD. Hooker, 28 August [1864]). In ‘Climbing plants’, p. 49, the plant is referred to as ‘an unnamed species from Kew’. CD’s notes on ‘Bignonia buxifolia’, dated between 25 February and 7 November 1864, are in DAR 157.1: 114–17 and 119.
In a note dated 4 August [1864], CD remarked that in structure and movement of tendrils, Bignonia picta was identical with B. speciosa (DAR 157.1: 136). CD noted the close resemblance of the two species in ‘Climbing plants’, p. 56.
See memorandum to JDHooker, [24 July 1864?] and n. 4, and letter from JDHooker, [4–]6 August 1864. In his letter of [15 August 1864], Hooker confirmed that Hanburya climbed by means of tendrils, not by the spiral twining of its stem. CD discussed the manner of climbing of Hanburya in his letter to Hooker of 10 December [1864].

Bibliography

‘Climbing plants’: On the movements and habits of climbing plants. By Charles Darwin. [Read 2 February 1865.] Journal of the Linnean Society (Botany) 9 (1867): 1–118.

Summary

Clarifies queries on climbing plants.

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-4588
From
Charles Robert Darwin
To
Joseph Dalton Hooker
Sent from
Down
Source of text
DAR 115: 243
Physical description
3pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 4588,” accessed on 21 September 2021, https://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/letter/DCP-LETT-4588.xml

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 12

letter