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Darwin Correspondence Project

From David Moore   9 July 1874

Director’s office. | Royal Dublin Society, | Botanic Garden, Glasnevin.

9th July 1874.

My dear Sir

A plant of Utricularia vulgaris has revealed itself to us this morning, by pushing forth its pretty yellow flowers. Finding good utricles on the branches, I have had it carefully packed to go by post this evening to your direction. I hope it may grow, but if not, I daresay we shall soon see more of it here.1

Along with the Utricularia I have got them to pack up a nice healthy young plant of Drosophyllum, which with care will grow and enable you to complete your observations on it.2

From what I have read on your experiments with Pinguicula they are very remarkable. So soon as your paper is published, I shall endeavour to repeat them here, as well as those connected with Drosera &c.3

The difficulty I labour under is to get a trustworthy person to assist me in such matters.

I have so many things to attend to in this large public establishment. I am prevented from making close observations, and one does not like to depend on those made by others, unless they be sure of the accuracy of the observer.

Have you had an opportunity of watching Pinguicula grandiflora under cultivation? It is a great deal more manageable than P. vulgaris.

The former continues to grow freely and flower annually without dying out, whereas, the latter requires to be renewed year after year under culture. What say you to this fact as a distinction to nearly allied forms, (species if you like better)?4

The Drosophyllum has been kept in a rather close place up to the present time and may require to be put under a large bell glass, raised at one side of its base a little, until it recovers the fatigues of the journey.

Wishing you success, | I remain | My dear Sir | very truly yours | D. Moore

Chas. Darwin Esq | &c &c &c

CD annotations

6.2 It is … better)? 7.3] scored blue crayon


See letter to David Moore, 28 June 1874. Utricularia vulgaris is common bladderwort.
In his letter of 28 June 1874, CD had mentioned his work on Drosophyllum (Portuguese sundew or dewy pine) and asked whether Moore could send a specimen.
Insectivorous plants was published in July 1875. Most of CD’s experimental results were based on Drosera (the genus of sundews). CD described his observations on Pinguicula (the genus of butterworts) in ibid., pp. 368–94.
In Insectivorous plants, p. 390, CD cited Moore for information on the cultivation of Pinguicula grandiflora (large-flowered butterwort) and P. vulgaris (common butterwort).


Insectivorous plants. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1875.


Sends an Utricularia and a Drosophyllum.

Observations on Pinguicula grandiflora. [See Insectivorous plants, p. 390.]

Letter details

Letter no.
David Moir/David Moore
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Botanic Garden, Glasnevin
Source of text
DAR 58.1: 75–6
Physical description
3pp †

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9541,” accessed on 7 December 2021,

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