RECORD: Darwin, C. R. 1855-1867. Experiment Book. CUL-DAR157a.1-84. Edited by John van Wyhe (Darwin Online,

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed by Kees Rookmaaker, additions and corrections by John van Wyhe and Christine Chua 5.2023. RN9

NOTE: See record in the Freeman Bibliographical Database, enter its Identifier here. Reproduced with the permission of the Syndics of Cambridge University Library and William Huxley Darwin.

[front cover]

Experiment Book.

[inside front cover]

[in hand of an archivist:] 49. DAR 157a

[next five pages are blank]


Oct. 26 /56/ flowered. No 1. Bright pink single!

Aug 1. 1857. No 1. Hollyock— 5 vars of red, passing from blackish red to pale pink - 1 pale pinkish with tinge of yellow— 1 may be called palest yellow with purple tinge.—


Nor. 2. snow white & dull; dull purple edged with white. 2 vars

Nr. 3. Do Purple, rich double— Flesh-double— Dull Purple double, edged with white—

Double red — single Red.— 5 vars.

N.B. Several Hollyocks grew near these plants.

1858. Aug 13' last year I saved some seed from Black Hollyock, which grew in row near other Kinds & of which the seed was very true, & this year has all come true double & black, ie seed of my own saving, which shows does not cross, or come true, even when crossed. Another red Kind, which was not true before is not now true, with some black amongst it.

(Henslow, now Aug' 6' 56 calls it Al. squarrosa)


Nov. 13. Put skeleton of Turbit to prepare.— In other jar there is skeleton of Spanish Cock, sent by Mr Wilmot.—

Dec. 13th Put some snail-shells Helix aspersa in sea water 12- oclock Frost in shed.

Dec. 28' All dead. several small ones all attached to other shells, & apparently dead, so that we may infer salt-water will Kill even hybernating shells.

1856. Jan 22d. Hollyock seed No (1.) Dull purple, fertilised by yellow Kind, having been castrated.

— Hollyock No (2) Dull purple, castrated flowers left to be fertilised by Bees, by adjoining plants

― Hollyock. (3) dull purple naturally & self impregnated

― sowed more of wild cabbage

― {Lychnis (4) Red. seed from Henslow, "very deep red colour from a wood, Bentley Suffolk 26 July 1855. Spec: preserved." [See letter to Henslow: CUL-DAR93.A98-A100]

― {Myosotis (5) repens or cæspitosa, seed gathered from Henslows Plants in my K. Garden, gathered Oct. 1855

—{Carrot (6) one seed from central floret, all other flowers having been picked off, Sandwalk, gathered Oct. 6. 1855 Did not germinate. April 2' 1856

― Silene inflata (7) seed from Mr. Ainslie's Vetch field

[Robert Ainslie, Methodist minister and writer. 1845-58 Lived in Tromer Lodge, Down.]

― Ægilops ovata, (8) seed from Henslow "(2d generation in Hitcham Garden 1855.—"



Jan. 22d {No' 9. Sweet Pea. white var. castrated, & left to be impregnated by adjoining varieties. — Ap. 2. 1856 Did not germinate

― No 10. "Lychnis dioica, white from field of Lucerne, Hitcham, 1855. Flowers dried."

― No' 11 Lilac seed. French dark purple var. West side of straight walk. Down Garden.

― 12 Geum rivale seed from Hitcham unripe (none germinated)

― 13 Lathyrus nissolia. Sandwalk gathered Nov. 1855.


Jan. 23d. put two half-ounces, separately, from Shaw, by sand-walk, from a shady place, where ground in most part covered with ivy, but in parts bare.— Earth taken close to surface but not the actual surface:— there were many earth-worm casts.— Put this earth on well burnt earth, under glass in my study. Feb. 10th Threw away earth; before which, two dicot. plants had sprung up near each other in the one glass.

Feb. 10th. put two 1/2 oz of damp earth, consisting chiefly of vegetable matter as before, taken from under edge of Hedge, on field side, beyond Drying yard, near Scotch Fir. Earth taken from surface, but leaves, about 2 inches & sticks removed.— The earth lay beyond limit of mowing. May 10th Nothing came up.



Feb. 15'. planted 3 1/2 two 1/2 oz, separately, of heavy reddish clayey earth, chiefly worm castings in glasses as before; taken from middle of upper end of sand-walk wood, from rather open part, surface, almost bare, very little moss & coarse grass— very unlikely for seeds.— Reach 27 inches in diameter. stood between above 3 feet & 4 ft.— 3 Plants came up in one & 2 in other. May 10th

Feb. 26'' Planted milk-Pan with earth from right under Beech-tree (77 rings: old): ground with bits of chalk, brick, gravel.

There was some 1 earth-worm: tree threw out great radius of thick entangled roots. (March 28th nothing came up.)—

Feb. 27' surprising the number of flints firmly wedged in roots of above Beech tree.— at least a dozen. I fancy, trees to float, must be first dried— Are the rafts on Russian Rivers & Canals first dried? Beech 27 inches in diameter–stood between 3 & 4 ft in diameter.

see Back of Page

March 1's Planted 5 Pots of Sweet Peas

― Rosa tomentosa from Henslow. var. see note in Box

― Centaurea nigra. var. decipiens. (Henslow)

― Wild Cabbage

― Ranunculus repens (Henslow)

― Lathyrus nissolia. wild seed

― 4 vars of Poirée


Feb. 25 & 27th Took 2 small parcels about 1/2 oz in each of earth fairly enclosed within wood of this Beech & planted it, but nothing came up.



March 3d. took 1 oz of earth, full of Tree roots, from open part of Handgrove wood —rather bare spot— underwood cut down about 15 months.

— April 2d. nothing came up.

— 6th. about 1 lb of sandy earth in cavity in Oak, but connected by very narrow tortuous passage to outside —oak 30-40 years old.

All 3 oaks had stones embedded. (Nothing came up. April 6th.)

7th about oz of sandy earth fairly enclosed in a second Oak stump about 30-40 years: (Nothing came up. April 6th. The 3d. oak had nothing: these 2 oaks about 1 foot in diameter.)

March 18. Sowed 10 Kinds of Peas

1. Dianthus barbatus

1. Dianthus sinensis fl. rubro-striata

2 ― sinensis (finibriatus)

3 ― ─ imperialis

4 ─ ― fl. albo

5 ─ ― striata

6 ─ barbatus

7 ― Dumettia superbus

8 ― ― atro-sanguinea

9 ― carthusianorum

10 ― giganteus

11 ― Gardenirianus  

12 ― Hispanicus

13 ― Hispanicus (splendens)

14 ― deltoides

15 ― atropurpureus

16 guttatus.


October 6th The middle division clearly has far more close plants than surrounding area. I do not see yet the grass seed has had any effect whatever. ←


April 1st. Sowed seeds of seeds in Larch wood: 1 on right hand, (ie N. side) Anthoxanthum (2) white Clover (3) Cynosurus & 4th on the path side for about six feet below the grass, Dactylis glomerata.—

April 2d. 1 oz of earth for south middle end of moved plant in middle of field: having torn up thin covering of grass & scraped upper 1/4 of inch of earth off; then took up at about 1/2 inch deep, the earth. (1 Dicot. came up.)

April 3d. Till within 2 or 3 weeks I plucked off all flowers off my primroses & covered them with blue glass. (last year I plucked off all flowers – & manured with Guano) & now the numerous flowers are only 2/3 size of common primroses & rather paler.

April 4th Put 2 bottles of Frog Spawn, under ground: the spawn had just ceased in Bottle 23 to be spherical, & had become 1/2 divided into little head & tail: in other bottle spawn yet spherical: by Rhododendron Bush by Door. Dead & Putrid

April 4th Put Frog Spawn just past the spherical form, in water for about 10 hours, varying from 85° to 95° Farht'.— (All Dead)

April 3rd Frog Spawn. in spherical state, in salt water for 24 hours, (all dead.)


Ap. 6th This mud with fibrous Matter was divided into 2 portions; in one weighing when damp about 2 1/4 oz. 27 Monocot & Dicot. came up making 29 plants. In the other lot, weighing when damp 1 1/2 oz. 14 Monocot. came up & 10 Dicot. = Making 24. plants. So that in under 1/4 lb of damp mud 51 plants came up. (May 10th.)


April 6th. Got some fetid mud from two spots, under decaying leaves & roots of water plants, 4 or 5 inches from margin & 3 or 4 inches ← under water; & a little red clayey mud from margin itself in another spot; By measurement about 2 oz. Little Pond by Cudham School.

April 7th I split up 2 Oaks of Mr Smith, each with about 50 rings about 2 feet in diameter: they enclosed dozens of stones: one must have weighed 3 lb, another 2 lb, fairly enclosed, collected a good deal of earth pretty certainly perfectly surrounded & generally behind stones; but here I observed that all earth seems frequently squaredfairly out.– (17th planted some more earth from under stones: the logs well washed & all chance of extraneous particles removed: a mere possibility that all the earth wd not have been carried.–) Of the 7th lot on the 15' one Dicot. came fr up.— (on 30th. 2 Dicots came up in some little earth about 1 oz earth specially got out of washed logs, sawn up in my study; quite certainly safe.— Threw away earth on May 17th.


April 26th. Put a dozen eels about 11 inches long in Cow-tank.

May 2d. 1 oz Earth from Handgrove wood, 1 inch beneath surface, near where surface earth March 3rd was taken (Nothing came up)

May 2nd 1 oz Earth from under great Heap of stones, Handgrove which must have been lying for 30-40 years, judging from stumps of trees growing on surface: I took earth not from actual surface on solid surfaces under the stones. The stones had been picked off field. — (Nothing came up)


Oct. 26th Got some earth perfectly enclosed, with many stones in roots of great Oak, beneath Handgrove.— not much— nownothing came up. —Kept for 20 days. — ←


May 2d. Began salting with 1/2 ie 8 1/2 oz to 2 gallons strong Bag Salt water: Myosotis: Lathyrus nissolia.— Silene inflata. & Lychnis &

May 17th.— Elms by Green Street Green: 2 trees had grown together firmly locked above & below; between them several great flints embedded & much earth: one of these large flints was partially surrounded & firmly embedded in the wood: & under this earth there was about 11/2 oz of earth (July 21' nothing came up.)

In the same elm, in biggest of 2 trees about 50-60 years old, there was a little cavity in nearly middle, with about 1 oz of earth embedded. (July 21' nothing came up.)
May 17th Eggs of Lymnæa peregra (& perhaps of Planorbis put in salt-water for 25 1/2 hours; those with embryos having 2 eyes were all dead: some younger, with no embryo. I took out & put in fresh water to see whether will develop.— May 25th. The latter all dead.— I also dried some slowly for 8 days, but none revived.

May 21st The flowers of Myosotis repens or cæspitosa in sun in K. Garden, seem from memory twice as big as former pink flowers.– Those in shady Place behind wall are some blue & large & some pink & small. The tube of corollacalyx seems certainly longer in the blue than in pink flowers in proportion to divisions of calyx.—

June 16th The specimens in shade have larger flowers with emarginate petals in slight degree.



May 22nd Sowed seed of Red Lychnis Nos 14, 15, 16 From Henslow (55) marked Red very deep. Bentley Suffolk (spec. preserved)

― Lychnis white (10) from fd. of Lucerne— Hitcham 55 spec. preserved.– From Henslow No 17, 18, 19

No 20 Centaurea nigra var decipiens. Seedling 2d removed from original plant wild at Bath. From Henslow Hitcham. 1855.

June 5th Tried several times for 48 hours Millet, Canary, Hemp & Nymphaea alba Trifolium (& Cynosurus (Anthoxanthum) incarnata & Dutch Clover with 2 Gold Fish none eat.—

Edmond fish Fish spit out seed, just like I found at Zool. Garden.

Duckweed floats in salt-water; it sticks to anything put in— was Killed & never recovered its green tint by 8 days in salt-water.— (June 17th it does stick to feathers of Ducks)

June 8th I gathered seed of Marseilles Cabbage Lettuce & Black-seeded Green Cos Lettuce, whilst growing close together; but came up, by hundreds quite true. Did they flower at same time? I think not, for this Sept. 56 they did not flower at same time.—


The dark purple grows nearest walk: pale crimson further off.



June 13th. The Lychnis (red) dioica which has had so much salt & Guano, in the female stems are certainly less red & less hairy than to other plants which only occasionally have had Guano alone.

June 16th Lathyrus Nissolia— seeds raised in Hotbed & Greenhouse & planted out some— now in flower— clump about 18 inches high. Flowers always 2 on stalk —"Lake Red". — Has been treated all spring with salt & Guano water.— Specimen dried.— Nos 100 stipules hairy. I can see no bracteas— Lower side of Keel white. Upper side of calyx reddish.—

June 21' Took wheat seed & vetches & Beans out of crops of two Pigeons, dead 2 & 3 days, & seeds germinated well, how long dead I k before seeds eaten, I know not. —

June 27th. Forced flowers opened perfect flower of dark purple Swt. Peas, brushed away pollen & put pollen of pale crimson Pea, (with mottled wings). Marked with Blue ribbon: also one of the pale pink with pollen of dark purple.—

― Castrated dark purple Pea & will put on pale crimson pollen marked with red tape: (one shanked off July 24) another Pod set good Peas, but not one of these Peas grew.

July 10th perfectly castrated 2 of darkest purple & 3 of palest pink flowers & left them to fertilised by Bees marked with Brown ribbon.— All 5 shanked off.

July 24th


(Aug. 31' Kept [illeg] till this date)

There was much earth in covered 5 glasses & not one seed came up. — Grew in shade, & tree cut down several years ago ←

July. Eggs of Helix aspersa sink in salt-water; kept for 6 days in it, all died, whereas eggs of same lot not salted all lived.—



July 2d. No 21 Sowed seed of Red Lychnis, which I got from plants, gnawed & salted from plants from Henslows seed; the first flowers plucked off. The seed were all from greenish salted plants.

No 22. July 22d Myosotis seed from plant, from plants from wild Henslow seed; the plant dwarfed by salt & guano & dryness

July 21. Earth almost certainly enclosed in great Beech 3-4 ft in diameter, in Rookery, which had been cut down several years.— Earth chiefly ― in enclosed crevices & behind finely wedged stones & pieces of chalk.

July 30th Viscaria oculata Killed by salt-water, Myosotis much injured.

Aug 8' Sugar-loaf Cabbage, not very fine plant, pods filled a very little above 3 imperial quarts.

Aug 19th J. Wedgwood writes that the pods of finest wild cabbage which she cd get, but not finest she saw, filled with some pressure I imperial quart measure.—


Dryed Seeds & Fruit in Salt-Water

Dec. 3d X Raspberry 6th sunk 2-3 days

— X Cherry (4th 1 sunk) 6th others sunk 2-3 days

— X Gooseberry 4th do. 2-3 days

— X Strawberry 4th do. 2-3 days

— X Carrot 10th almost sunk. 11th quite sunk 7- 8 days

— X Barberry Jan 13th 40-41 days

— X Prunella vulgaris 10th 1 sunk. 11' all sunk 7-8 days

— X Potamogeton natans dryed (5th sunk) 7th float near bottom (very windy day)—

9th windy down 5-6 days or 4-5

5X Arum sink at once. 7th float near bottom 1-2 days

— X Mulberry 11th floating near bottom 12th sunk. — 5-6 days

— X Blackberry 7th to 9th float near bottom 11th quite sunk

— X Yew. do. 8th & 9th do. 10'' do. do. 5–6 days

11' X Rose –Jan 2nd 21–22 days

— X Oats –16th sunk 4–5 days

— X Dactylis 15th almost sunk 17th sunk 5-6 days

— X Dock 17th sunk 5-6 days

— X Stachys sylvatica –16th sunk 4-5 days.

— X Calamintha clinopodium Dec. 22d. –10-11 days

— X Mahonia Dec 20th 8-9 days

17' X Wheat Dec. 22d –4-5 days

— X Broom Dec. 20th 2-3 days

— X Tomato – 26th 8-9 days

— X Phleum Dec 21' 3-4 days

— X Water Lily Jan 4th floating near bottom 5th do. Jan 6th. – 19 - 20 days



Aug 11th Morello Cherries, gooseberries, black & red currants, ripe & fresh sink.— Raspberries floated: sunk within 18 hours.—

Put in Cowslip 4-5 days, plantain (1-2 days), Groundsel 17th 5-6 days, Prunella vulgaris 17th 5-6 days

12' (6 P.m.) Lychnis dioica (white) Sept. 3rd.— 21-22 days. Silene inflata 25th 12-13 days

13th Sweet Pea 17th. 3-4 days.

16th 6 P.m. Strawberry swims: 17th sunk in 24 hours

18th. Wheat 22nd 3-4 days Oats 21st 2-3 days

[do] Phleum 21' sunk. 2-3 days

[do] Calamintha clinopodium 25. 6–7 days

[do] Dock 21" 2–3 days

[do] Centaurea nigra 23d. 4–5 days

[do] Lotus corniculatus 21st 2–3 days

19th Honeysuckle 23d. 3–4 days

21st Lathyrus sylvestris 23d. 1–2 days

23d Helosciadium not ripe 25th 1–2 days

— Juncus acutifolius (not ripe) 30th 6–7 days

— Sparganium ramosum (not ripe). Nov 21' nearly 3 months

— Mountain-ash. 25th, only separate berries float. 31' one yet floats.— this sunk. Sept. 11 –18–19 days

— O Iris, Spanish Bulb: rooted. 31st. (7–8 days)

27. Yew berries (sunk at once.)

— Fir Cones Scotch. Sept 5th 1 sunk (10th: 2d sunk 13–14 days)

— Erythrina 30th 2–3 days

— Scarlet Nonpareil. Nov. 11 sunk 75–76 days.

Dactylis. 22d. 3-4 days

Stachys sylvatica 31" – (12–13 days) Matricaria chamomilla 21'. 2–3 days. Ranunculus arvensis 21' 2–3 days. Separate Berry of Berberis 21st some sunk

22nd all but 1 sunk.

23 all sunk 3–4 days.

19th Berberis aquifolium 21'. –1–2 days Common Broom. 23d. 1–2 days

Viburnum (wayfaring) 24th. see 0–1 days.

Alisma plantago— (not ripe) 25th 1–2 days

Carex water. Oct. 19 sunk— 57 days)

Magnolia acuminata. Sept 5th.— 11–12 days

Blackberries sunk at once

Orleans Plum & stone sunk at once

Papaver Phœas Sept 2d. 5–6 days

Wahlenbergia. (13th 1 sunk.)

20th the 2d sunk –23–24 days.



Dryed Seeds


21 X Matricaria chamomila Dec. 29th 7-8 days

do X Honeysuckle Jan. 9th nearly sunk. Jan 12th 21-22 days

do X Centaurea nigra 27th –5–6 days

do X Ranunculus arvensis sunk 24th 2-3 days

do X Lotus corniculata — 24th do.

23 X Alisma plantago Jan 2d. 9-10 days

— X Clematis 29th 5-6 days

— X Syringa vulgaris 29th 5-6 days.

26' X Laurel 27th 0-1 days

— X Charlock Jan 1' –5–6 days

29th X Agrimony 31st – 1–2 days

— X Geum do –2–3 days

— X Viburnum Jan 5' –6–7. days

Jan. 3d. X Cotoneaster 9th –5–6 days

— X Cratægus 8th. nearly sunk 11th sunk –7–8 days (I think large sort)

— X Chioccocca— 12' 1 sunk –20th. others sunk –16–17 days —

X Asparagus. March 30th. – 85–86 days Apr. 9th Germinated admirably. after this period

— X Laburnum Jan 15. –11–12 days —

— X Narthecium 12th 1 sunk 20th others sunk –16–17 days

Jan 9 X Viscaria –12th. 1 sunk Feb 9th 30-31 days (lots of seed in capsule)

— X Juniper 4 berries (Febr. 3d. two sunk) (Feb 8th the 3d sunk) Feb. 17th. 38-39 days

— X Gilliflower 13th 3-4 days

— X Helosciadium 24th 1 sunk Jan 30th 1 sunk 31 other sunk 21-22 days Feb. 20th germinated well after 16th 21-20 days salt

Feb. 24th many seeds floating planted after 46 days March 3d germinated well.


Aug. 28. Gilliflower. 9th. – 11-12 days

— 29th Fraxinella 1st – (2-3 days)

— Escholtzia 30th 0-1 days

— Cotoneaster microphylla. 31' – (1-2 days) — Snowberry Tree. (Chiococca racemosa) 6 P.M. (separate berrys only)

Geum intermedium 29th sunk. 0-1 day

Antirrhinum majus 3d. 4-5 days

Campanula (small) do 4-5 days

separate berry of. 3+ 1-2 days. Sept 4. 2/3 sunk in 5-6 days. / Sept 9th last sunk. 10-11 days

30 X Viscaria oculata 2d. 2-3 days

— X Kalmia latifolia 0-1 days

Sept 1. X Arum berrys. 3d. 1-2 days

— X Charlock 2d 0-1 day

— X Clematis 2d 0-1 days

4th X Sycamore 13th 8-9 days

— X Tomato 7th 2-3 days

— X Mulberry 5th 1 sunk 6th the others sunk 1-2 days

— X Laburnum (61 species) 6th – 1-2 days.—

7th X Nuts nearly ripe sink.

11 X Barberry common. 29th 1 sunk Oct. 2d second Bunch sunk. 20-21 days

— X Spanish Pink. 13th sunk 1-2 days

12 X Tropæolum Canariense 13' sunk 0-1

— X Convolvulus (large) do do

— X Horse-Chesnut (Oct 10th 1 sunk.) Nov. 1. the 2d sunk. Not quite ripe. (48-49 days)

20th X Narthecium ossifragum Bog Plant 26th 1 sunk 27th 2d sunk 6-7 days

— X Drosera 24th – 3-4 days

X Acorns (sink at once)

(Pouters ate greedily acorns.)


1857 Dryed Seeds

Jan 18. X Walnuts Ap. 18th continued floating over 90 days

— X Sweet Pea 27th 8-9 days

— X Erythrina 2-3 days—

— X Mountain Ash 26th many sunk 27th float only by wood 8-9 days

Jan 22d. X Common Thorn 24th. 1-2 days

— X Fir Cones (31. 1 sunk) Feb 1. 9-10 days

— X Poppy Feb 6th 14-15 days (only few seeds in capsule)

— X Dictamnus Fraxinella 26th many sunk 27' sunk 4-5 days (closed Pogs. beautifully)

— X Cowslip. Feb 1. 9-10 days





28 X Lettuce 31' 2-3 days

— X Inula Feb. 3 – 5-6 days

— X Drosera Feb. 10th –12-13 days

— X Plantago Feb. 8th 10-11 days

Feb. 1 X Kalmia 7th –5-6 days

— X Turkish acorns March 21 1 sunk 49 days / Ap. 15th 2 sunk (74 days)

— X Magnolia acuminata (Feb. 8th 1 sunk) 10th 9-10 days

— X Convolvulus (Feb. 7th. 1 sunk) 8th others sunk 7-8 days

— X Tropæolum canariense (Feby— 4th 1 sunk) 5th all sunk –4-5 days

— X Silene inflata 16th 14-15 days

— X Lathyrus sylvestris Feb. 9th – 7-8 day

Feb 7th X Ragwort 12th 4-5 days

— X Groundsel 12th 4-5 days

— X Lychnis dioica March 22d. – 44-45 days

— X Antirrhinum. March 8th –28-29 days

— X Epilobium 10th. 2-3 days

— X Dianthus March 8th – 28-29 days

— X Campanula Feb. 14th pods alone have sunk. Feb. 15th 7-8 days

Feb. 9th X Luzula Feb. 12th – 4-5 days

—15th. 3 Nuts (Ap. 15th 1 sunk.) thrown away

(May 9th. 2d nut sunk) = 83 days)

(May 16 3d nut still floating after 90 days

July 2d one of these two germinated

[in margin:] Aug. 22d 57. Retried ripe nut: it sunk.

One of these nuts germinated. The Walnuts did not.—


Sept. 20 X Ragwort 27th 6-7 days

— X wild carrot 22d. 1-2 days

— X Hawthorn 1 branch sunk 21st: 22d Branch sunk 1-2 days

— X Agrimony 21 sunk 0-1 day

21. X Lettuce 26th 4-5 days

— X Inula 28th ─ 6-7 days

— X Prunella vulgaris 26th 1 sunk ─ 29th 2d sunk 7-8 days

— X Epilobium (small sp.) 26th ─ 4-5 days

29th X Walnuts (1 sunk) 30th the other sunk 0-1 day

— X Laurel berries (sink at once)

— X Lilac. 30th. 1 sunk. 2d the other sunk 2-3 days

— X Pæony— 4th. — 4-5 days

— Euonymus. Novr. 28th — sunk.— 2 months under 1 day.—

— X Cratægus american 30th all berries sunk but one 6th last one sunk.— 6-7 days

— X Sweet-Briar 2d. sunk 2-3 days

30th X Asparagus— (4th 1 sunk) 23d. Oct. other sunk. 22-23 days. (Some germinated)

X tall Kidney Beans. 16th 1 sunk 18th 2d sunk — 17-18 days

Oct. 12th Fig. —Decr. 3d. thrown away still floating

13 X Arbutus berries sink at once

20th X Spanish & H Chesnut 21 two sunk. (23d other sunk) 26th all surely sunk, but one floated Nov. 2d sunk

— X Horse without Husk ripe. 21st two sunk (23d sunk) 29th last sunk— 7-8 days.

21. X Juniper Berries (5) 26th 3 sunk (Novr. 2 d. all but one sunk) 3d last sunk 12-13 days

— X Ground-Nut dry (5) 26th 3 sunk / 28th all sunk. 6-7 days

24 X Ripe acorns. (Turkish Oak?) (28' 7 sunk) — 3d. last sunk 9-10 days


1856 Oct. 30. Typha latifolia Jan 30th Floating after 3 months.

— X Nuphar lutea. capsule Nov. 7th. 1 sunk 7–8 days // 23d 23–24 days. Germinated after salt w. Jan 20th sunk

— X — loose seeds of (sink at once) try if germinate after salt.


A. None of the Wheat, or Tares or Cabbage germinated. 2 Oats germinated, one much retarded after 13 days. Part of the pellet I left till quite dry till Oct. 24th & then planted; & then 1 Canary seed & 2 Beet came up.— one Beet much retarded. viz after 24 18 days.

The Eagle was fed at 3 oclock on 15th & threw up the pellets on 16th. On 17th a cleaned rat was given it, & 18th at, after 21 hours a pellet was thrown up; in this was 3 Vetches. 1 Oat & 1 Canary seed, & these had been in stomach exactly 70 hours.

These 5 seed planted on Nov. 13th after having been so long damp: Decr 1 Then after 70 hours all dead.—

(B) 2 or 3 Clover seeds alone germinated.

Nov. 18. 1 Partridge foot 55 grams of dirt.— Planted dirt from 4 feet sent me by Mr Edwards of Birds Killed yesterday. Pellets of Chalk as large as largest clover-seed.— (Dec. 7th. Nothing came up)

One seed which germinated Hooker thought seed of Vicia. Feb. 20 a seed of Bryony has germinated



Sept. 23. 1 Partridge shot by Mr Turner, had 10 grams of dry earth chiefly under claws; very firmly attached (Oct. 19th Nothing grew)

Sept 25. Parslow shot 2 Partridges, after heavy rain: very little dirt, but yet some: nail of one clogged with fibrous matter, fe plumage feather?— planted.

A Oct. 19th. Killed some sparrow on 14th one with wheat inside, put in Oats, Canary seed Tares, Cabbage & Clover — gave it 3 Birds to small S. African Eagle. (Bateleur): bolted them; threw up pellet in 18 hours, ie on morning of 16th charged with seeds: planted these seeds on 19th.—

(B) Oct 19th Planted pellet from Snowy owl, charged with seeds planted pellet whole — 16 1/4 in stomach.

Such seeds wd be well manured— Bird wd float if died in sea.—

Oct. 19. Partridge with 22 gr. of dry dirt on one foot.— 5 gr on another: few atoms on 3 other feet— 3 feet quite clean.— In the 22 gr. spec. there was a angular stone fully as large as Tare or small a Pea. weighing 3 gr. The mud is felted together by particles of feathers— wd only carry seed in Clay-soil.— (Nov. 13th. Nothing came up)

Found starling shot dead with dirt on Feet.

Oct. 29' I have now seen plenty of Thorn, Yew, (Briony I am almost sure) Laurel, & 3 other kinds Raspberry planted in Birds Dung.— some of the seeds were in insectivorous Birds dung.— (I may add Hollies am certain were one). Nov. 7th. I have now seen 7th, Kind, I think of wild Rose. All during Oct. & Novr.—

Nov. 16th an 8th Kind. / Nov 20th 9th Kind / Decr. 12th—/10th & 11th Kinds /16th 12 kinds / Ap 2d floating [illeg]



Dec. 7th. after 30 days planted these seeds, & Tares & Peas in Crop.

Dec 10th all germinating splendidly: Even the Tares! Mem. a dead Whale in sea at times might allow a Bird to escape whilst floating. In Geograph. Journal Vol 7. p. 229. on carcasses of Birds at Sea — N.B. I tried 40–50 Tares in salt–water for a month & only one single one germinated!

Jan 22. 57. Put Helix aspersa & Pomatia to float in artificial sea water for seven days. 29th 1 The small ones floated for some days, & then all sunk.

A small one adhered all times to other large ones & when removed floated & another larger one adhered to H. Pomatia but did not float. Both these recovered soon & completely. Of the others some mud a little 5 big & 3 little: all recovered except 1 very small.

As two remained adhering, they cd stick to trunk of trees in crevice: (so Beetles)

The weather was very cold all time Feb 1'. H. Pomatia quite lively after 10 days in salt–water: this individual had been a week before in Salt Water a month 6 weeks previously. Feb. 5. the one from which I had removed calc. operculum & which had only thin horny one, moved distinctly after 14 days in salt water— but died after 3 or 4 days, perhaps kept too warm. Feb. 11. Quite alive after 20 days (+ 7 previously) Recovered perfectly & crawled about.—

Perhaps were Kept too warm, when recovering.—

A lot of some dozens shells collected about Down, in November & October & allowed to hybernate were put in at same time for 1 exact week, in sea water. Helix Pomatia sunk to bottom, but when operculum was removed was quite alive & crawled away.— A Pupa Clausilia nigricans also crawled about— & Helix ericetorum was alive see drawer with specimens. These shells at end of week did not float, & I neglected to observe whether most floated & sunk. Some few floated at end, but I think most of all these were dead ones. ←

Dec. 14th. all rest dead Pupa & little barrel–shaped genus. & several Helices.



Nov 7th. Put a Pigeon with Canary SeedBeet & 2 kinds of Cabbage to float in Salt-water made by Bag salt.— Seeds in Bag in Crop. (—Jan. 22 57 Still floating.—) Feb. 24th floating Ap. 2d floating May 5th. sunk.

Oct. Eggs of slug sent me by Mr Gaskoin, sunk in salt-water, & I think all were killed by 5 days, but the other one did not bring many young.

Nov 13

Oct r. 24. Rat with seeds put in inside given to Snowy owl & pellet cast up in 21 1/2 hours. Planted on Nov. 13th Oats. few wheat— Hemp & Millet seed fd (Dec 1st 2 Oats & 2 millet germinated well) 2 Canary seed from Vulture 23 hours did not grow.—

Oct Nov. 13' Pellet from Snowy owl from Bird with seeds 18 hours in stomach: (Decr. Germinated 5. Oats. 1 Wheat. 1. Hemp 2. Millets)

These P. Santo shells were collected middle of May 55, so that Not 18 months old.

Nov. 30' Put small 1/2 of Mr Wollaston P. Santo Land shells to soak & about. 5. All Helix pulvinata came quite to life & crawled about— 17 other partly protruded their bodies, but hardly or not at all moved & soon died.— There were several hundred.—

Dec. 3d. 9 1/2 A.m. Put the other larger 1/2 of Mr. Wollaston; & my own Down Mollusca to float, in real Sea–Water. Only one Helix pulvinata came to life & moved; but soon died. The weather during the exact week they were in the sea water was unfortunately very warm. —



1857. Jan 30th A small lot of seeds passed through from Marabou Stork none of them germinated: some supposed to be thrown up now germinated.

Feb 15th 4 P.M. Fish with seed given to two Pelicans; some cast up —as supposed from stomach. Feb. 21 Wheat 2 — Oct. Millet & Beet. / 2 Oats 1 Millet/ 23d 2 Wheat 1 Canary Seed 1 Millet 2 Oats.— 25th 3 Oats, 2 Millet 1 Canary seed 1 Beet./ 26th 1 Canary, Oat, Millet 27th 1 Beet 1 Wheat 2 Millets 2 Oats. March 2. 1 Millet/ 8th 2 Oats 1 Beet 1 Canary seed/

Some found in Dung on 16th at 10 A.m. Planted Feb. 18th. / Feb 21. 2 Oats & 1 Wheat germinated.— / 4 more Oats // 1 Beet—2 Oats // 25th 3 oct 2 p 25th 1 Wheat/ 26th 1 China aster 1 Oat./ 27th 1 Wheat/ March 2d 1 Oat/

N.B These facts are of no use with respect to any seed accidentally swallowed by a Bird, which I shd. think wd. happen sometimes

Fish ate yellow water Lily & Potamogeton seeds —

3 Water Lily seeds passed through a Stork, but did not germinate.



Dec. 8th. Guinea pig with many seeds, at 4. P.m. given to Bateleur Eagle: this Bird was fed on 9th at 7 A.m. & 4 P.m: on 10th do with food without seeds. — On 11th at 6. a.m. pellet cast up. So it had been 2 days & 14 hours in stomach; & 3 hours days + 18 hours in very damp pellet. Planted on 12th at 9 1/2 A.m.— (In Pellet cast up on 12th— no seeds)

Wheat. Oats. Millet Canary Seed— Vegetable marrow— Cabbage Hemp., Beet Celery, Carrot, Not one grew. No!! One Beet grew well on Jan 1st. (hence retarded) Jan 8th Another Beet grew.— Nothing grew threw away Jan 17th.

Gave fish with seeds to Fishing Erne Eagle—swallowed on Monday 29th at 3 P.m. found on 30th at 8 oclock a pellet.— Jan 7th 1 Millet & 1 Wheat grew. Jan 9th & 10th another two millets. /—Jany 11th 2 oat / Jan 12. 1 Canary Seed/

Gave fish with seed to Marabou Stork on 23d 2 1/2 on 24th at 9 oclock there were some fd. in Dung; these were crushed in latter, but one Millet grew well.

Gave fish with seeds to do Stork on 29th at 21/2 o'clock, & passed them between 9 & 11 oclock, say 10 oclock. (19 1/2 hours) — Planted Jan 1'. —5th 2 Millets grew



This mud when stiff was 3/4 deep in the 5 1/4 diameter vessel— It filled a large breakfast-cup.— It weighed when thoroughily dryed at ordinary temperature under 6 3/4 oz: no doubt it had lost by decomposition of organic matter.

Westerham Pond

Dicots &

some Monocot





Brought forward →






Feb. 24th March 3d

— 11-






April 1


























Ap. 21

May 7th

─ 12

─ 20

─ 31

Jun 14th.

July 1st

Aug 1st
























Jan 11'. Mud from lower end of Ravensbourne; taken from different parts— with streamlet running through

These were two lots were placed on each side of same vessel; & seeds grew from all Parts— Vessel 5 1/4 in diameter— liquid mud less than 1/4 1/2 inch thick.

Jan 11'. Mud from 2 or 3 places from little pond on road to Crystal Palace

Mud taken from under water, where plants were growing.

Jan 18th 9 Monocots germinated/ Jan 21. 3 Monocot. 2. Dicot/ Jan 30' 1. Dicot.

Feb. 2d. 3 Dicots—/ Feb. 4. 1 Dicot. 6 Monocots/ Feb 5th 1. Dicot./ Feb 6th. 2. Monocot.

Feb. 7. 4 Dicot. 6 Monocot/ Feb 10' 4 Monocot—/ Feb 13th 2 dicot. 1 Monocot/ 15th. 2. dicots/ 20th. 3. Dicot/ 26th 1. Monocot. 1 Dicot/ March 15 1 Dicot / 20th 3 dicots / March 30th. 1. Dicot.

Ap. 1. 6. Dicots. 1. Monocot/

Feb 10' Mud from 3 or 4 different spots in Westerham Pond on road to.

― 24' 5 dicots. 1. Monocot. / March 3d. 2. Dicot/ 11th 2. Dicot / 18th 8 Dicot. 1. Mono.

March 20th. 3 Dicot/ 26th 2 Dicot. 2. Monocots/ 28th 5 dicot 1. Mono/ 30th. 6. Dicot 1. Mono/ Ap 3d 8 Dicot. / Ap. 7th 15. dicots/ Ap. 10' 8 Dicot 1. Monocot/

March 12th put 4 small slugs fd in earth, which seemed nearly torpid in art. sea water; they seemed dead in 18 hours — took one out after 24 hours & was dead— took 3 others out in 48 hours, all dead.—

20th Put dryed Ducks feet in vivarium, fd. once Limnæus on it, but fell off in few minutes when out of water. A small Planorbis stuck on, I suspect only by being flat & damp, & Kept out of water for 20 hours on the foot was quite alive.—



April 20th very many young Limnæi (as I believe) hatched in Tumbler with plants, in which they seem to feed.— Hatched on a day or 2 or 3 days — This morning at 7 1/2 put in dryed Ducks foot & at 9 f d. two adhering. These 2 put into damp Tumbler on to foot at. These were quite alive at 10 hours out of water

At 1. P.m. found 3 more on Ducks feet; put into barely damped Tumbler

N. B. You cannot anyhow jar off these little Limnæi off the Ducks feet. (certainly not Planorbis the only other shell which I have). How can they be jarred off the Plants—

2 1/2 P.m. 1 more on.

4. P.m. I fd. 15 or 16 sticking firmly on (& one Limnæus a 2d do) Leg laid on surface of water

5. P.m. 30–40 sticking on.— I think they seemed as if they wished to crawl as high as they cd & so used the Ducks foot to ascend

(A Limnæ Planorbis excessively young survived & was quite fresh on the Ducks foot under glass for 17 hours.— 3 Limnæi alive after 20 hours, but during first part of time they crawled down Ducks feet & got into bottom of glass, which was damp, but not actual water.

Of others left on Ducks foot for 24 hours, only 1 survived & that was a Planorbis; but 5 or 6 or 7 stuck on though quite dead: most of others crawled down foot to bottom of glass, which was rather damp, though the shells were not in water; of these about 1/3 survived the 24 hours.—

Though hermaphrodite 2 cd be acquired from any Pond



March 18th. Seeds given to Iceland Falcon at 10 A.m. cast up on 19th at 6 a.m.— Seeds given with chopped Guinea Pig, from it, nor any small Hawks wd not bolt it whole.

March 26th.— 6 Canary seed./ 28th 4. do/ 29th 1. do/ 30th 1 do/ Ap. 1. 2 do/ so that 14 Canary seed have germinated.

Their were plenty of Millet & cabbages & turnips & oats in this lot.

April 10th it is very singular that no other seed whatever has germinated though there were plenty of millet, & plenty of cabbage & turnip seeds; (of which by the way none have ever germinated). & oats & wheat etc.—

Sept. 30 1858.— Put a good deal of Duck-weed on pan of water, but not nearly so thick, as if often grows naturally, & put in upside down two Ducks— some stuck on back of both— If hard to put in impossible to free it.— In moving Duck weed from Aquarium to another, I have accidentally transferred a Water Mollusca.— Many smaller aquatic animals might be thus carried.

It would cling when dry I think.— from fibrous roots.—

May 8. The young Limnæi from 14-18 days old; I put in Ducks feet & in drawing it out I fd. 3 sticking on.—I fd. these young shells in damp jar kept alive 20 hours nearly all; but here & there were drops of water— Mem. Duck closes foot in flying, so that shells wd be Kept between damp membrane. —



These weeds were free from all chalking & protected from larger animals. I suspect rubbing of Meristem great cause of destruction.—

March 31.

April 10th


May 8th

June 1

June 1 Living

July 1









[=] 357

67 / 357 alive

357 [-] 62 [=] 295

Aug. 1st 62 / 357 alive

of the old marked plants. A few & very few new ones have come up

80/357 less than 1/4 alive now


Weed Garden

Mem. Native Weeds.— (Old shrubbery & then Strawberry neglected Bed.)

Piece of foul but not very foul judging from rest ground in Orchard, which had been Shrubbery & then for a year or two strawberry Bed— in size 36 inches by 24 inches.— (protected from large animals).─ Dug in January & cleared of all perennials—

Early in March seeds began to spring up: marked each daily.

March 31st About 55 marked, of which about 25 Killed already.

April 10th. Pulled up 59 wires marking where seedlings before development of two leaves had been devoured, I suppose by slugs, & many drawn out by worms, & perhaps apparently some beaten out by heavy rain. All, or nearly all earliest seedlings thus destroyed. I think certainly grass seedlings escape better than others. (no doubt they suffer more by being open & exposed to weather & only few, so better chance of being devoured)

April 20th Pulled up 28 wires, dead.— (I think dry weather is beginning to tell against some)

May 8th Pulled up 95 wires.— (I suspect that some seedlings are killed by drought.)

June 1st Pulled up 70 wires.—

— Left still 80 still living of several kinds most Ranunculus & Grass Spergula— Labiatae Thistle (1. Nettle, some Crucifers (Extremely few have come up during all May)

July 1st — 13 of the 80 are now dead, leaving 67 alive a few more & but a few more seedlings have come up now there are 67/357 alive ie not one 1/5 alive. Evidently the great risk is in early state.

Aug. 1. 5 more of the 80 now dead— leaving 62 alive


62 [x] 6 [=] 372

62 [x] 5 [=] 310 — say between 1/5 & 1/6 perished have survived.





1857. April 8th— 16 K. Garden seeds sown on Grass field.— All Kinds some in Slit, 1 inch deep & on surface; with feathers to frighten away Birds.—

Loose seeds to left-hand

Left hand— looking S.

Loose seeds to left hand

Middle Row

seeds loose on both Hands

Right Hand Row


May 15. few growing in crack— many eaten

June 14' sickly. 20 almost dead


May 15 few growing in crack gnawed


Germinating gnawed & drilled a little



Kidney Beans (Early)

I think none

They are germinating May 28th

Spinage Spring


Corn Salad


Germinating well




Not Germinating

Some are




I think none Germinating.

Scotch Kale








Short Row to left of Red Beet. few germinating— June 15 nearly all dead

[in margin:] Nettle & Course weeds here




Of seeds in right climate & soil (general case) not destroyed by Birds &c— those which got planted at right depth (Earth-worms 2 actions & ground cracking) (& depth experiments on what shown all important) I shd think most germinated & then came battle for life with slugs & insects & other plants.

May 28. a few Peas shot up a few inches high a fortnight ago, but now they appear much gnawed & hardly higher: I doubt whether any will reach level of grass, except Beans.— Most of the seedlings look pale & sickly at bottom of long grass.

July 1' I can see none alive of any kind

Aug 1. – Not one plant has grown up— The Beans alone flowered.—



Early in June I moved twice flower 4 of Lathyrus grandiflorus as if Bee had visited — 1 shanked off — 3 others seem set; of these two grew a little & then shanked off— one has made (July 1) one noble pod— Not one other pod on whole 2 plants with innumerable flowers— Bees do not as yet visit flowers

July 1st. Did the same with 5 (2 on one footstalk) other flowers on 2 plants. 1 of them set — but then subsequently some pods set of themselves— I may say some good effect Also castrated 4 common Peas— fertilised two & left two with no pollen— The 2 fertilised grew much larger, but were gathered— one that was not fertilised formed small pod but no peas within

July 2d. In Larch Wood removed Pollen from 4 flowers, some top, some bottom & middle on 4 plants of Bee orchis, & put on pollen masses from other plants— (Marked pods with white worsted & broke branches near them) there were others pods swelling on some plants. All Killed by Cows

(1858 I crossed some this year but cd perceive no good effect, the uncrossed flowers produced no larger pods.)



1858. These produced (I have somewhere a more detailed note) from I believe same pod some one some dark purple like mother, & some almost exactly like pale father, but slightly faintly streaked & blotched with pink on the wings.— I sowed lots of seed from these latter, having destroyed the dark purple so that there shd be no accidental crossing.

Now July 8. 1859 I have looked to great row of grand children from pure parents; Not one no. no! Aug 12' one dark purple one has appeared, like grandmother, but just perceptibly streaked is like dark grand-mother, several are just like pale grandfather, but most are streaked & stained with more or less dark pink on wing-petals & a few have fine pale purple wings which I think makes a new variety, with the standard darker crimson than the other varieties, but not at all purple like that of grandmother. In fact not one has purple standard. Some have standard petal streaked as well as wings, showing clearly what a tendency there is to streaked colours in these hybrids— All tends to show no natural crossing with sweet-peas.—

see p 69 for great grandchildren



July 1st Castrated 2 Sw' Peas, standard dark purple, wings blue (there is one darker var) & put on pollen of the palest pink vars.— I put flowers in Bottle— one marked red had unfortunately 1 anther left— one marked red white was quite castrated. Seeds sowed.— X

Aug' put 3 eggs of Helix Pomatia in sea water for 10 days & 3 for 20 days Killed.— All sunk.— 4 tried without water produced green shells, so eggs good—

Dried some spawn of Linnæus for 6 weeks, & then put in sand damped it, & then added water, but eggs came to nothing.

Oct. 14. In the Myosotis which I had Kept deluged with water, there were 6 seeds— some more triangular in shape & smaller.— There were other twigs with the corolla green— & the seed much more elongated: these were monsters for there were perfect twigs on same stem.

Dried.— The calyx was proportionally deeper cleft in these.

It Four nuts character whole tribe. (3rd generation-plants)

Some of the flowers had only 3 seeds nicely packed, by abortion of one—

One flower had seven segments to calyx & two pistils; 2 flowers joined & 7 imperfect seeds.—



May 15. buried Sheep-Head from Shangai, China sent me by Mr Lockhart, in Garden to see about Ear orifices.

[William Lockhart (1811-1896). The first Protestant missionary to China. See CUL-DAR206.34-35.]

Also Mr Tegetmeiers white rumpless Fowl—


1857. Dec. 1' some seeds of yellow water-yellow, soaked, put into Fish, given to Gannet, some vomited up & some passed through, Bird, none germinated: Kept till May 5th.

1858. May 6th. I think after trial, Spawn-perch Perch could easily became entangled & transported by Birds feet.—

May 9th covered up under Bell-glass Heartease. 16th fertilised with thin camel-hair brush, one of the apparently oldest flowers: when I saw fertilised I mean I simply push in & out brush, in passage to nectary. Bell-glass had evidently hastened flowers.

Not withered 19th withered on 21'.— 22d some other flowers withered.

22d. did same to 2 other flowers & marked them with blue worsted.

None of the flowers whatever set a single pod— So experiment wholly failed & tells nothing.—

May 26th Lychnis in K. Garden one plant has broader & redder petals with hook on each side [sketch] making quadrifid; & the coronet or fringe within corolla is red, instead of white.

June 2d. saw in Laburnum, Bee with pollen on hind legs certainly not Hive-Bee.

Saw Hive Bee on T. incarnatum. (from N. Zealand). Saw same Bee, with narrow yellow rings on abdomen, sucking Lotus. (Back of Page)



I saw another small, very distinct Bee sucking clover & it seemed to split tube of corolla— at least in one flower, which I saw it suck, it was split— I saw same or another Bee sucking red-clover I may safely give up generalisation. Saw on Vicia sylvanus Lathyrus pratensis long-horned Bee.

I have since seen many genera of Bees on Leguminosæ.



3 plants including that in Pot

June 4th Marked with red one flower of L. grandiflorus & moved wing-petals

— blue — . . . & did not move wings.

I am certain corolla fades far sooner in moved than in unmoved flowers

14th. Found 6 red or moved flowers dropped off— & 4 unmoved dropped off.—

15. — 1 red 2 do

16 2 red do 4 do

17th 2 red 2

1 Red set

In K. Garden. 1 red dropped off.

One pod alone was formed & this shrivelled & dropped off.— Hundreds of flowers were formed on the 3 plants, & not one pod set anywhere; but I am sure moving flower hastened its withering, showing that some effect was produced.—



Aug 17th. I covered up nearly 4th length of late crop of Kidney Beans, as continuation of same row being left untouched & these were rather less favourably situated. (It was highly remarkable how the old covered up, which had flowers in upper part set such numbers of Beans immediately)

The covered up lot had 74 stalks bearing 97 pods: ie on average 1.31 pods to each stalk. I do not include pods under 1 1/2 inch in length. These pods included 261 Beans: ie on average, 2.69 beans to pod. But is so difficult to count.

Beans on account of so many aborted that this had better be omitted.

In these numbers are included 4 pods of flowers moved by me; & these were remarkably fine & included 14 beans ie, 3.50 on average.

Moreover I do not doubt that impregnating one flower acts in whole stalk.

Of the uncovered row 155 stalks had beans pods (ie less rather more than twice as many as in covered); & the number of pods was 292: ie thrice as many as the covered up. But these pods included only 739, ie only twice as many as covered: but then I do not think counting of Beans can be trusted.

Kidney Beans


1857. In latter part of June I covered up nearly 4 ft 3 ft length of tall kidney beans just before any flower out, I then once moved 19 flowers, not always in morning. On Aug 18 I uncovered the flowers & found 6 5 fine pods, & one aborted pod.— counting 18 beans, 2 having each five Beans.— Some of the marked pods were in centre of row & may have aborted from shade of plants.— Of the uncovered flowers there were 35 pods: but this number was actually as nothing to what the rows exposed to Bees produced; & there was not one case of more pods than one on stalk. Of the oldest of the pods with 5 seeds















































Hence these 35 pods had on average 2.4 beans.

The 5 moved pods had [average] 3.6 beans.—

I also covered up a plant of white Clover with gauze. (just before flowers expanded) so these that I think it cd not have inspired seeding: I saw Bees continually visiting flowers outside. I then took several seeds from both & counted seed in each, & I found very nearly 10 times as many in those outside: & if all the heads with none or very few were rejected on both sides there was five times as many seed.




I covered with thin gauze, just before opening of first flowers, 17 plants of Beans. I moved 11 flowers like Bees do: this produced 5 fine pods (& one imperfect) these five pods had 15 beans ie average of 3 each. (which is full average in the uncovered plants showing that gauze was not injurious)

These 17 plants produced 36 pods + 5 which were moved say 40 pods. So that each plant produced at most on average 2.35 pods.— The 36 which were produced, without having been moved, included only 1.11 beans ie (& no less than 8 of the 36 pods had not a single bean within!)

Three plants had not one pod. Say that 36 pods produced only 40 Beans.

In an adjoining row, 18 plants were left to free action of Bees, these produced 47 pods; ie. 2.61 pods on average: so that the w These 47 pods included 141 beans, so that each pod on average included 3 beans

36 of these pods must have produced 108 Beans

Hence we see the Bees tend to produce rather more pods, & a vast many more Bean, in proportion of 3 to 1.11 — Same general results as for clover & Kidney Beans.


Oct. 22/58/ I find eggs of slugs sink in sea-water.—

March 29. 1858. Fumaria = Corydalis tuberosa.—

Spur on both sides of flower, but thrice as long on one side than on other— long spur with plenty of nectar short with none— Hood with crest slips off front side of longer nectary; cannot be slipped off on other side.—

Pistil slightly curved towards side of longer nectary.

[attached sheet:]

Seeds of Hybrid Sweet pea only from the pale pink, which on wings were slightly streaked with darker pink— The dark purple were all destroyed so there can have been no crossing in this generation

Sept. 18 /58/

[in margin:] Planted April 4 /59






In winter Killed all my Hens— Got splendid Spanish Cock from Mr Tegetmeier & following pure-fowls — 2 white Game, white Cochin — white Silk — silver spangled & pencilled Hamburg — Silver spangled Hamburgh Poland— In none of these breeds any Red.

June 10th— Far larger proportion of chickens black.— But one white has died (& several about 7 black have died). Some of the white have a very few scattered black feathers.

(One lot of mixed eggs from white Game & white Cochin by Black Spanish consisted of 11, & of these 4 black & the other 7 nearly white; so colour of Cock not always so prepotent as stated.)

This tends to show these 2 white Breeds are true.

(Next year of grandchildren, as 2 grand-parents of all will have been black & as much several of the breeds are black & white, & as in this 1st generation so many black-birds, there ought to be great preponderance of black-birds)

June 12th 2 more blacks have died.— /17th five more blacks dead /21st 5 more blacks/ Only one of the whites of 1st brood is pure white; & the whitish ones seem to be getting black feathers. June 25' White & black dead/

Aug 19th A gray cock in one spring which was quite black all over in its second feathers after the down, is now assuming some splendid red Hackles over the rump.— This offspring of white silk-fowl & Spanish Cocks— so splendid case for both parents are most distinct & true breeds.—

Some have thought a silk-black-skinned a distinct species— This bird has now very many fe red feathers on neck & back.




Sept. 15' 1859. Another young Cock from Silk-Hen, shows some long reddish-yellow feathers above tail.— (A fine cock from either game or Cochin, which was quite black has many yellowish red feathers over tail & pale hackles on neck like old fashioned Dorkings— Another cock from Game, which was also quite white has now few yellowish-red feathers over tail.) Another cock which from rose-comb & mottled plumage no doubt is from pencilled Hamburgh, has some reddish-yellow feathers over tail. (a fine Hen from Cochin (with feathered legs) is getting more dusky & legs jet black.—)

(Dec. 24' 59. Killed cock from Spain & White Silk Hen. (White Silk) Comb blackish single deeply serrated with large white ear-lappet (white ear-lappet very hereditary)

Neck with yellowish white hackles, (centre of each Hackle black). Hackles over tail do with more yellowish tail. Wings, with dark green large coverts over secondary feathers & smaller coverts over these yellowish white. In fact if these yellowish-white feathers had been red & if the great secondary wing feathers had been red, the Bird wd have corresponded with G. Bankiva.)

(Another Cock with rose comb (above alluded to) with large white ear-lappets agrees with last, except neck hackles whiter & rump hackles decidedly reddish-yellow-white, except that some of the smaller coverts over secondary wing-feathers are spotted spangled with black; & breast itself is broadly pencilled with white from Hamburgh parent.

(N. B Both pencilled & spangled Hamburgh have rose comb.) Probably from Spangled.) The Bones are black of all yet Killed chickens from Spanish & White Silk.— curious hereditary & feathers not so or white colour.—

(Carried on to p 49)



June 23d. A few days ago I covered up in Bell-glass Corydalis lutea & marked 2 flower stems with worsted, & snapped off the few lower flowers which were ready & treated pistil with brush used a little brush to imitate belly of Bee, when moving flowers; & I this day see that the lower flowers are withering on these two flower-stalks, whereas not one is withering on any of the other equally forwards flower stalks.

23d I also snapped off penultimate single flower on one stalk, & this (26th) has now a pod, whereas the lower & earlier flower has not.

June 25. snapped off a flower 2 from bottom, & this (27th) has just set pod; 2 lower flowers quite fresh

June 25th. The 2 flower stems of which I have snapped the flowers, from below upwards as they became ready, have now both many pods on them, whereas on all the other flower-stems equally forward. I can find only one single pod.— 26th I now find 2nd pod.—

29th The plant now pretty well covered with pods on all the stems; & I now see clearly pod sets (sometimes drop off) without the pistil naturally springing up.— so movement can only take place by intervention of insect: & it is now certain that this movement, hastens setting of pod. (N. B. I have not been guided, as Bees wd be, by nectar & flower being ready for fertilisation.

June 22 Moved 4 flowers not the very earliest of the Lathyrus & marked with worsted. (28th one two dropped off) & the other 2 have made fine gray pods & not one other flower out of the hundred have as yet July 6th 14th set one pod.— Case conclusive.

July 14th examined pods of Corydalis, 9 pods which had been moved, contained 32 seeds, whereas 9 pods taken mostly from early stems & from about same height on stalk contained 53! So moving unfavourable to fertility yet case not like Bees which would cross & often visit flowers



Corydalis lutea

Sept. 4. 1861. I covered up in early summer one plant of this Corydalis & left others uncovered. The covered plant seemed perfectly healthy.— I gathered equal portions & compared the number of pods & the uncovered, (which had flowers sprung by Bees) produced exactly twice as many pods.— Moreover the ground under this plant was black with seeds, which was by no means the case so strongly under the other.— Hence insects aid in its fertilisation.—



Covered up patch of Trifolium incarnatum, leaving equal patch close by uncovered & which was much visited by Bees.— The heads seemed equally fine on both; & I took 60 from each, as far as I could judge of equal sizes. The uncovered produced 349 gr. weight of seed; the covered only 63 (& very many aborted seeds); so that the latter produced exactly half-way between 1/5 & 1/6 of weight of the exposed. It was remarkable how much longer the covered remained in bloom & were a little drawn up, but very strong & healthy; this lateness of flowering might be due to thin cover, but I believe owing to non-fertilisation; & from same cause I cannot doubt the roots sent up a considerable stock of second-flower stems, which the exposed plant did not.

We know, also, that Beans & Kidney-beans set under same sort of cover, when moved, splendid pods. It shd be recalled that when the covered Heads did cease flowering, they ripened very quickly, so as to be only 3 or 4 days behind the exposed.

So that for every one seed produced without aid of Bees, 5 1/2 produced with their aid.

Trifolium procumbens Medicago lupulina, on cultivated yellow clover; 150 heads about equal in size under cover produced pods (without stalks) weighing 77 grams open to Bees [produced pods (without stalks) weighing] 101 grams.

As I have forced to gather them not quite ripe to prevent losing the pods, I could not shell the seeds; & probably the inequality would have been somewhat greater could I have weighed the seeds.

Such wild Bees, as well as Hive-bees visited this clover. —



Aug 1. White Dutch Clover, (T. repens): experiment partly failed, so that I got only 20 Heads from under net over the yellow clover; (other net having burst) these 20 Heads produced no seed & I saw literally only one aborted one.— 20 Heads open to Bees produced 25 gr. weight of seed, & from weighing 2 gr. I calculate this weight of 25 gr. contained 2290 seeds! This strange experiment is confirmed by last years experiment.

Aug 13th common red clover (T. pratense) 100 Heads open to Bees produced 68 gr. of seeds. Two grains included 80 seeds ∴ lot = 2720 seed A (full) (ie 102) 100 of quite equally sized Heads under the net produced not one single seed!!! Of this I am positive.

A fine tall branching plant of Melilotus officinalis came up under net with clover; it went on flowering for weeks & bore many score of racemes which did not set a pod: several set one or two pods; 4 5 set 3 pods; 3 6 set 4 pod; & one set six pods.— When uncovered (August 11) was soon Aug 12th visited by many Hive-Bees. Was broken by wind, & only few small branches preserved. I cut off all the stalks with & without pods, which had finished flowering under net.— I did not cut off those stalks which had even more than half-flowered & had half-shanked off their flowers once!, so that result will not be so striking, as it might otherwise


have been. Even today Aug 16. (4 days after visits of Bees) a multitude have flowers have withered & apparently pods set. I tried one raceme with brush, & flowers all immediately withered.—

Sept 10' On the Melilotus hardly a single stalk with no pods; only 3 or few with one or two pods alone, & these may have been stalks of which all the lower flowers shanked whilst covered up.—

Stalks with 1-6 pods. average 3 =

7-8 do average 7 1/2 =

9 =

10 =

11 =

12 =

13 =

14 =

15 =

16 =

17 =












Number of Stalks













So that the 56 stalks bore on average 8.1 pods.—

As when covered such vast number of stalks had no pods

I may say produced at least 20 or 30 times more seed when visited by Bees.—

Of 56 stalks, all but 17 produced more than 6 pods each.—




Sept. 26. gathered the Melilotus— stalks now richer; several with 15 pods on each stalk— /5 with 16 pods / 3 with 17 / 3 with 18 / 1 with 19 / 1 with 21 / 1 with 22 / & one with 30 pods.—


June 19.— 1860. The chickens are musky black & some quite white & a good many sooty & Piebald— One Hen from Spanish & Hamburgh clucked, but never took to her nest

Nov. 13th— Most of them died— Those which have survived are black & white; one or two cocks have few orange tawny hackles over rump.— The crossed Hen did not show any signs of vitality.—

(Crossed Male Penguin with black Palmer.— The crosses are all brown or black. with few white mottled feathers.— not like wild Ducks.—)


(See p 41)

Feb. 1. 1860. Killed splendid Cock (before alluded to) from Game Hen. Hackles over rump with slight orange tinge, & so on neck but in lesser degree & in still lesser degree in least wing coverts—)

(A Hen thought from Cochin— Hen showed a trace of brown in her black plumage.

April 1. 1860 Some of the jet-black Hens, raised last year, now for 1s time show a very few white feathers.—)

Ap. 24 (The reddest of all cocks with blackish comb died.— Descended from white Japan or silk Hen. Compared with G. Bankiva. General aspect very similar, but rather duskier; difference Hackles on neck & rump, with very narrow medial black line & tipped with black.— Lower necks-hackles paler orange, & in wild the lower neck Hackles are slightly more orange. Beneath neck Hackles & above Rump Hackles — broad band of green, in wild there is only narrow space of green almost concealed by neck-Hackles.— All beneath body black, but belly sooty so in wild.—

Wing uppermost smallest wing-covert green; then broad bright red band; then green: all this agrees; but main difference is that in wild the primaries are narrowly edged with pale Purple, & the secondaries are broadly bordered with reddish brown, whereas all primaries & all secondary feathers are greenish black in this crossed specimen. More strictly dark glossy, green replaces reddish=brown on the secondaries.— Sail identical)

April 30' The 3 cocks which have been Kept for this spring, have been the above red one from Silk-Hen— 2d a white one with much red from Game, & 3d. Black with whitish Hackles from silver Poland. The young chickens are very diversified; one with reddish head dead; another with



Black broadly tipped with barred brown also dead.— No one last year in 1s cross, had much brown feathers.—

May 14th

Leschenaultia flowers of this sort of shape. The pistil & indusium lies close to two united Petals, near tip.— [two annotated sketches]

If a Brush is poked in rubbed over indusium parallel to axis of flower, in manner in which Bee would certainly rub in getting nectar, the prominence of lower lip most readily opens the indusium & the hairs rut the pollen from upper lip all over in every surface of indusium; & the hairs bring out some pollen. Moreover the pollen adhering to exterior lips of indusium, & likewise to the external hairs on upper lip, would certainly get on bees abdomen & hind=legs & thus get carried from flower & flower, & be left within indusium.— The indusium not very easy to open till above dodge practised, viz passing tip of brush longitudinally parallel to in axis of flower over its mouth.— (12th I find pollen does adhere to hairs of Brush)

July 8th I now find profusion of pollen in indusium so that brush yellow after routing in it & 2 flowers last impregnated have certainly swollen: differently from any others on whole plant, & plant has produced 100s of flowers.— One is swollen only in one spot— the other more generally swollen— In all the many stalks an ovum's diameter has remained same; now in one, whole upper part is at least double diameter: & the other has one swollen spot, as if one seed there.—



Feb. Partridge caught in Trap with both Legs broken: very much

March 1' dirt on feet & a bit of moss grew.—

March 1'. 1860. Mr Norman shot a Rook dead: 5 or 6 grams of dirt (by guess) on soles of feet & under claws.— Mem. Rooks blown out to Madeira.


Ap. 18/60/ Leschenaultia formosa from Kew. (Goodeniaceæ) In full bud. anthers just opening, [sketch] Hairs only on one side clusters of 5 stamens bending over open cuplike indusium

Another flower just opened, stamens with most of pollen gave shed, quite below summit of pistil & indusium.— Indusium closed, but edges not grown together. I believe pollen within— Certainly pollen above brush in the humid matter, which I believe to be stigma.—

What use can Indusium be? There is much nectar

Ap. 25' hardly any pollen within indusium, plenty on lips

28 another specimen with much pollen within indusium

The Pistil lies close to single upper petal. [sketch]

I see often little pollen on hairy lips of indusium.—

{Unless Bees open indusium in search of pollen, & so carry it from flower, I see no way of crossing— I have seen Humble-Bees open young Honey-suckle flowers: so at least possible.—

May 11th I have opened 8 flowers. In 7 abundance of loose pollen within indusium in irregular lump, on under side of upper lip; but in no one case any near the stigmatic surface of Hooker.— In nearly every specimen pollen on tuft of hairs on upper lip outside & generally on edge of indusium.— These facts convince one that for self impregnating, insect agency required.




In early summer I poked pencil-brush in many flowers no effect.

On July 25' I did same for 5 flowers, & all five set pods which have remained on till now Sept 19". Now 3 have dropped off; these were small. Two others; one much larger & I can see seeds within.— Though whole plant covered with numerous flowers—only two others have set pods which have increased in size & have remained long. These are nearly as fine as 2 finest, which were routed with brush. These two grew near each other— Perhaps visited by a fly, as I saw one on Scævola feeding on pollen.—

Dec 3rd I have now examined the 5 pods: 2 had no seeds; 1 had half a dozen: 1 had 26 seeds & the 5th about same number.— The two pods which had become self-fertilised, was not so large as the two largest of those fertilised by brush; one of these had 18 seeds & the other 14 seeds.— I planted all these seeds. None germinated

Mr J. Drummond (vide note)

[James Drummond (1787-1863), Scottish botanist, superintendent of the government botanic gardens in Perth, Western Australia.]


1861 May 8th 1860

I observe about 1/2 cowslips in Greenhouse & Experimental beds have long pistils & very short anthers with several pollen at base of tube & other 1/2 plants (all same on same plant) have very short pistil with long anthers at mouth of tube with much pollen– Case of Compensation.— The long short pistil is rather large rudimentary (in male flowers) is flattened at pole & smoother— & pale coloured.— The long pistil, which I presume is effective is more globular rather smaller dark-coloured & rougher.

The pollen from male flower plants the short styled (ie with long stamens & short pistil) is all apparently effective each granule full of brown matter & apparently spherical. Whereas the pollen from female plants with long short stamens & long pistil is smaller exactly in proportion of 6:9 ie. 2:3. pollen in water.— dry pollen nearly same proportion.— & much pollen coloured owing to contents not being so brown & granular & apparently not so convex.— (I observed 2d wild cowslip. same variation in the pollen.— See under primrose for the difference in stigma

May 11. In Cowslip Primrose wild— same difference in female flowers (ie with short stamens) immense quantity of pollen, which in water is rather more transparent & in diameter 6-7, whereas the male flowers with long stamens have brown pollen, each grain apparently fuller of granular matter & 9-10 in diameter.— (Pistil Stigma of male flowers perhaps a little larger, perhaps shade lighter coloured— perhaps rather more depressed at pole, but certainly far smoother: this latter difference certain; stigma of female flower much more papillose.—

(Pollen of Primrose & Cowslip very adherent: must require insects)

Peeled stalks to Primrose & Cowslip means female— Sticks not peeled means male— In Experiment bed Blue worsted on stem or whole plant means not touched.

{Male Plants stamens long–, pollen large–, style short–, stigma smooth–,

Female Plants " short " smaller, " long, " rough,}





May 11th Examined 2 other planted primroses from near Garden shed— Pollen dry— certainly pollen of female plant is more transparent— & has different aspect.— Male pollen about 9/6000 of inch sometimes little above 8/000. Pollen of Female plant, generally rather above 6/6000, sometimes even 7/6000— say on average 6 1/2/6000 & 8 1/2/6000— nearly 2/3 of size.—

Two other flowers from same plant, put in water became spherical & their relation is 6 or rather above /6000 to 9/6000.— I examined pistils of these 4 primrose flowers— stigma of female much rougher, darker green, more globular on summit & decidedly much larger when measured longitudinally along axis of style shorter in male.— The stigma differed in size in the two male flowers.

May 12' I compared cowslip flower barely opened & there can be no doubt of difference of length of adherent stamen (& of pistil) pollen abundantly shed: I think another looked less full in female flowers.—

I examined some common Auriculas from Mr Cattell. There was one female plant with long pistil & globular stigma; these had pollen-grains with above 4/6000 of inch. The pollen of male Short-style was above 5/6000— looking with 2/3 object glass & weak eye-piece conspicuous difference in transparency of pollen: the female pollen being far more transparent.— There is much greater inequality of length of stamens than in Cowslips.— also greater generally in pistil. The stigma of female rather more globular, yellower, perhaps rougher & larger. The stigma of male very variable. In one plant which was male by position of stamens, the pistil reached up to them; & the style seemed thicker — the stigma was triangular

["Cattell, John, 1786/7-1860. Nurseryman of Westerham, Kent. CD often ordered seeds and plants from C. Many records in CD's Account book (Down House MS). 1860 CD to Maxwell Masters, the nurseryman CD generally dealt with. CCD8:147." (Paul van Helvert & John van Wyhe, Darwin: A Companion, 2021.]



& cupshaped, instead of globular. In one truss whole pistil & especially stigma quite atrophied & minute!

I examined some Polyanthus flowers from Cattell's yellow centre: petals chocolate-red edged with yellow— males & females with same differences in pollen & stigma as in cowslips.—

Of two kinds of oxlip from Cattell one was male & the other female.

May 13 My children gathered great bunch of Cowslips 79 w stalks were male flowers, & 52 were female flowers (In sand-walk proportion reversed)— I rather strongly suspect that female stalks are apt to be smallest & therefore more likely to be overlooked by children. I cd perceive no difference in tint of flowers in the 2 bunches.

In 2 cowslip-flowers of apparently same maturity, just going to wither— The seed-capsule in female larger & the ovules about twice as large as in male flowers & darker green.— yet abundance of small ovules in the male.—

In two buds of cowslip with just tip of petals visible, anthers in males & females showed no perceptible difference.

In two flowers of cowslip about 1/2 1/4 opened, I could perceive no sensible difference in size of ovary.

In two other flowers of cowslip quite open & I thought perhaps falsely of same maturity, the germen was actually larger in male than in female & ovules of same size.—

In the male flowers the length of pistil is generally same on same truss, but varies considerably on different plants, & is never above 1/2 length of tube of corolla




May 14. Stalks with 5 flowers & under 5

Females 77 Males 103

Stalks or Umbels with 6 flowers & upward of 6―

Females 112 Males 99

As the size of umbels does not affect sex; all these & those collected before may be added together; these were collected in two fields of very different nature


79 52









Females 241

Males 281


stalks altogether

May 16 2 cowslip flowers just quite withered, from Sandwalk ovaries same size— seeds of male perhaps trace smaller— a shade yellower— certainly a far greater number of minute aborted ovules.—

Two flowers in do. state from greenhouse.— vast difference in size of seeds & their colour.— Here too male had far more aborted ovules.—

I mixed pollen of male & female together & when viewed under 2/3 object glass I certainly think male pollen darker than can be accounted for by greater diameter, which is often as 5:8.— Under very high power this difference in brownness & opacity not very decided.—

Compared seeds of male & female flowers just withered.— so difficult to get of same age, that I think all that can be safely said, is that male seeds are very slightly yellower



Saw Bombus muscorum gathering pollen at greenhouse cowslip— saw common hortorum sucking & biting hole of female in K. Garden & the children saw two sucking female in Mr Phillips field— where very many Cowslips. I never saw one at Primrose— I do not believe Hive-Bees ever visit either— I suspect moths must come into play.—

May 20' compared pollen dry of two nice flowers, just opening;— pollen in both flowers in profusion— looked through different powers— Beside difference in size, the pollen of female long-styled is certainly different shape, more elongated & more transparent in middle — The pollen of male more apparent —spherical form— In water both get spherical, & then size only difference & apparently more granular matter of same apparent nature in male pollen than in female.—

N.B. In Greenhouse plants I so routed male flowers with brush, that pollen must have got down to stigma.— I shd think.

June 1' Examined Pod from male & female plants in sandwalk & fd seeds exactly same state!!! 1860—

Nov. 13th Four Cowslips in K. Garden have flowered & are of same sexes as in spring.—

Plenty of Nectar in most Primulas







May 18 1860. Covered up plant of Orchis Mascula; left other uncovered, which got injured; but already pollen-masses of 5 flowers removed, 4 left unremoved; buds above.— This plant grew singly in sand-walk.—

June 1' I have now left orchis uncovered for 2 or 3 days, but not one pollen-mass removed. It seems as if there was period for removal.

May 24. About 10 days ago covered up. V. tricolor. (poor wildish spec— in neglected gardens) in Bell-glass— I fertilised with camel-Hair. 3 flowers, pushing up pollen from brush on lower petal up onto stigma; & these 3 flowers have just withered before any others.— (N. B saw Hive-Bees going to several single violets in numbers) & June 14 these 3 have set five pods. When I fertilised these 3 flowers there were many others; but now June 24th I find only 4 large-pods— of these 1 lost— 1 with as many seeds as on pod from adjoining plant; & 2 others with much fewer seed.— There are other pods setting; but the number of pods very much less than on an adjoining uncovered plant.— On this adjoining plant at least 55 [+] 50 [=] 105 pods were shed in July as large as the 4 gathered— to be safe say in proportion [illeg] of 4 to 50.— July 8th on plant covered up. I find 14 18 more pods




but all of these very small & dismal, several with only 1, 2, or 3 good seeds; this fact is very good evidence of necessity of insects visits: for thrips or ants &c might convey a few grains of pollen.— On the other exposed plant, I now find 50 additional fine Pods. Aug 4th I today uncovered about 4 feet long of Early Emperor Pea, & the plant was covered with splendid pods.


May 24— In last 10 days I have seen many small Bees of many Kinds going to Broom; they crawl into unopened flowers for pollen: so do few Hive Bees & some Humbles.— The Hive-bees are of that size that in entering they partly straighten pistil, while rub against [illeg] their bodies dusted with pollen.— This is rather different to what I remember formerly, when stigma rubbed on top of their backs.—

June 27th Not one pod on covered up, branch; whereas other branches covered with pods; but as place shady, the net may have made excess of shade, & so caused pods to shank— It is surprising that Bees should be necessary seeing that pod opens by itself—

May 23 covered up Vicia tetraspermum & other weeds in Sand-walk

June 8th marked 2 hermaphrodite Thyme plants in K. G. with stick with bark, & 2, with all flowers without stamens with naked stick.

The 2nd female plant from further end of K. G. has many very many of its pistils trifid at summit, sometimes 4 fid. & even 5 fid. I n To see about seeding.— Aug 4th I see the Females seeds very well: I think better than males?




May 25 covered up Ajuga reptans - Pistil split at top lies rather behind 4 anthers, but very near them; so that wind might easily impregnate the stigma; but the pollen coheres & does not seem easily to be blown away—

The anthers open in face towards the tube; a bee would push them a very little back & then would rub against stigma.— (Saw B. muscorum sucking every flower of the Ajuga & driving head into mouth of corolla.)

July 9th I have uncovered too soon— The 2 which I fertilised have not five seed & some other pods which I did not touch are well set; yet I think much fewer pods than on uncovered plants, but these latter seem often to about so hard to say positively. Certainly no stem under net was so good as several uncovered— Some butter-cup plants under net set plenty of seed.—

May 25" Covered up in sandwalk. Vicia hirsuta not so (see Yes pod Hairy) the smallest Leguminosæ this has least fl. of all B. Legum & Vicia sativa. Daisies &c &c.— May 30' Moved flowers

June 8' The flower of the 2 Vicias seem to have set quicker than others.

From analogy Trifolium procumbens & Vicia wd have honey: is it wasted?

June 21. I have watched repeatedly (& 2 nights for moths) & never saw any insects visit these flowers.— June 27th saw fly with long Proboscis sucking the Vicia

July 9th The pods on V. hirsuta (& the Trifolium) are now large & appear as numerous with as perfect seeds as in those uncovered.— I have carefully compared them.—

Aug. 4th If there is any difference the V. sativa & hirsuta bear more & finer pods than the free plants! Plenty of seed in little clover.—

Such flowers as Galium a great difficulty for me


May 30th found every single flower of Corydalis, which was open, & all were open except top buds, was snapped off; now I believe they do not snap off if not visited by Bees & this shows how effectively Bees had visited this plant.— (May 31' Examined whole lot of flowers from Mr Phillips not one single one snapped off.) (June 6th saw B. muscorum snap off flower).

June 16. Examined 1/2 dozen Mr Phillips spec.— not one snapped off, yet upper flowers open on most of stalks.— (July 9th looked at heap of covered up flowers on same plant, with pods setting not one snapped off, yet all capable of snapping. Of the exposed flowers I now find.— See paper pinned on—

(May 30' covered up Fumaria officinalis— The Pistil does not spring to side of nectary, but is curved to that side.
July 9th Exactly same apparently number of pods on covered & uncovered plants— as each contains single nut, no deception— On opening seeds appear equally good—

As nectary pretty long, it is not likely any insects cd have crawled in through net.—

Insect fertilisation certainly not necessary—

See Hildebrands description Fumaria


[sheet pinned to 63:]

July 9th Corydalis 1860



Lower flowers snapped off

Lower flowers

not snapped off

Upper flowers

not snapped off

































Total 6





So that of 43 lower flowers on 6 stems, only 2 not snapped off.— 18 upper flowers not yet snapped off.—



June 1st Scævola microcarpa Corolla splits on one side & pistil rises up & hangs over opening of flower. In bud indusium, beautifully fringed & open & so arranged as to be sure to sweep pollen into within edge of indusium. At bottom of indusium, in bud smallish bowl-shaped stigma; with humid apparently stigmatic surface at bottom. In fully open flower the stigma has grown & rough prow & stern, (but not stigmatic surface) projects beyond edges of indusium.

In one flower lately opened, indusium not closed & as at this period it lies close over orifices of tube of corolla, bee wd very likely force in pollen on to central depression of stigmatic surface.— I was alarmed at finding in fully open flowers, that I cd not open indusium.—

June 3d. opened another indusium much pollen within in upper part close under lip; the great & rapid growth of stigma would give excellent chances of self-fertilisation; perhaps ensure it.—

June 6' 1. Pm another flower of Scævola just opened, with indusium widely open.— Put plant in hot frame at 4 P.m. indusium perfectly closed.— This flower at 1. P.m. appeared only just & not quite open: it was not open previous evening.—

June 7th Another flower just opened with indusium closed: I have little doubt that others were open from cold: for the quick closing was when I put plant from green house into hotter frame. I now suspect that horns are stigma & that they which protrude.—

In indusium & horns (stigma?) bend at right angles to style towards gangway to nectary?

Flower split open & so horns being rather lateral no evil.— On Corolla

Is there nectary.


in tube single hairs; further outwards curiously knobbed hairs.

Do these hairs & in Iris delay insect in crawling in.—

I examined an indusium no trace of pollen on hairs, or of projecting horns. I put it, (flower had been open about 2 days, but weather cold) near study fire & in 1 1/2 or 2 hours all the hairs of indusium, ie externally were clogged with pollen, & the horns had just begun to protrude. The position of parts is really beautiful for Bee to get rubbed on back with pollen & then to rub the same on its own horns or on those of other flowers.— Mem. R. Brown saying some are fertilised by insect-agency.—

The Horns in this state, protrude only very little beyond or beneath row of hairs in lips of indusium.— I touched hairs of this indusium with wet pin head & pollen adhered in plenty to it.— How curious that pollen shd first be so ingeniously collected within indusium, to be afterwards pushed out.— But not more curious than that in Campanulaceæ, the hair on stigma shd brush pollen out of stamen & return it there till stigma ready.— Watched a 2d flower; pollen It is began to come out before horns of stigma protruded— some pollen even falls on corolla.— It is really pretty to see not a grain of pollen?? on bright hairs of indusium?? at first & then slowly to see them clogged with pollen.

June 11' some flowers just opened on Sunday morning at 4 P.m. Monday. Horns just began to protrude.— September 2d. I saw small Hovering Fly (Syrphidæ?) push under the pistil & get its back all over pollen; it was also feeding on pollen shed & retained along lower petal by knobbed Hairs.— Use of Hairs in this case (if not in Iris) Flies snap open indusium of Leschenaultia.



May 30 (62) Certainly no stigmatic surface in the Scævola, exteriorly to the indusium; but within along whole base a protuberant greenish surface, in all appearance stigmatic, though not viscid

July 1' 62— Above wrong; the horns seem certainly stigmatic; I looked at too young a flower— But no pollen-tubes had penetrated the Horns.

April 1863. I have put pollen on these horns repeatedly but never penetrate them; yet clings to it & have appearance of stigmatic tissue.



June 10' Covered up common muddy yellow Iris.— All failed

Covered up 7 racemes of Laburnum— fertilised 3 flowers all shanked off so cannot be certain: but leaves & stems looked very healthy & not very transparent in very sunny aspect— Of these 7 racemes only 3 had one pod each— One of these pods only 1 seed.— a second 4 & a 3d 5.— Even Except this latter number, others below average. Laburnum much visited by Hive, Humble & other Bees.—

June 11. Saw Hive Bees sucking Polygala, they went to abundant nectar on side to which stigma bends rectangularly; the anthers seem separated from stigma by upright membranous sheath.— Kurr says no nectar!

[Kurr, J. Bedeutung der Nektarien. 8° Stutt. 1833. See CUL-DAR261.10.5a.]

Covered up Barnes Cabbage; fully as many pods Aug' 4th & as fine pods seem to have set as on a plant left free. This very important as I know how they naturally cross. Indeed common experience wd have showed th if ca Cabbages did not set under cover: as often covered to prevent cross impregnation





I covered up Lathyrus nissolia & common Lotus. Aug 4th

I now see that the Lathyrus has abundance of fine pods & peas. I could see none of Lotus corniculatus (latter very much visited by Bees)

Aug 30 Of the many plants of Lotus I could not find one perfect pod— 2 pods on 2 stalks very small & no peas within. As L. nissolia & T. pretense procumbens set abundance of seed, cd hardly have been effect of cover. N. B. T. procumbens setting 10 lots & recently good.—

Common Plantain had set plenty of seed. (See Back

Aug 29 1860. Sweet Peas either grandchildren or great-gr-children of my 1st cross— now vary a good deal.— Standard varies from pale to dark red of same— Keel is all nearly white: but wings vary from very nearly pure white to a full but not dark purple; all intermediate tints in wings: not one plant has appeared like the one dark pur ancestor. The standards of a few slightly blotched with white.



Under this same net Prunella

Bartsia odontites

Sept 5, 6. Visited by multitude of var. sp. of Humble & Hive Bees. Anthers have little spines like Euphrasia— Pistil projects remarkably in young flowers, before pollen shed; but has not pollen this at period only later.— Nov. 11th The covered up plant produced a good many seeds, but many shrivelled & not so many as the free plants.—


1860 Nov. 20. I covered up this summer 3 stems of Garlic Leek.

Neither these ar nor those exposed produced any good seeds: but I noticed that not one of the 3 covered trusses produced any bulbs at base of flower stalks, whereas nearly all of those frequented by Hive-Bees, produced vast numbers of bulbillas.— How is this— Can fertilisation be necessary for their production?

I afterward proved all rubbish

Extension of influence of pollen beyond ovary for Pangenesis

Dec. 11th One foot of Partridge with 61 gr of dry earth adhering to it.— Put on burnt earth: Nothing came up

Nov. 24. 1861. A Pheasant-foot from Scotland sent by Mr Lamont with some earth, planted it.  

["Lamont, Sir James, Bart, 1828-1913. Explorer, traveller, sportsman and geologist. FGS. Of Knockdow, Argyllshire. 1860 Mar. 5 CD to L in reply to his letter of 23 Feb. about Origin. CCD8:120. 1861 Seasons with the sea-horses. L sent CD a copy. CD replied about whales and bears. The book, p. 17, contains an important statement about the relationship between British red grouse and Scandinavian willow grouse, and, p. 277, quotes whale-bear story, from 1st edn of Origin, p. 184, in full, one of the few reproductions of it in CD's lifetime except in 1860 USA editions of Origin. CCD9:37. 1865-68 MP for Buteshire. 1910 1st Bart." (Paul van Helvert & John van Wyhe, Darwin: A Companion, 2021.)]



1861. June 5

I had 18 plants of common tyme, seedlings planted out; of these 7 had well developed anthers 11 had none. Examined to day pistil no external difference in size or or in germen, at the time when pollen was shedding & pollen-tubes were penetrating stigma.— The pistil is, however, but partially developed in most of the flowers when the pollen is shedding— Under high power the tissue of reflexed segments of stigma more lax & transparent in female than in male flower— There was plenty of pollen on stigma of female flowers.— Change of conditions (& there is considerable variability in stigma) has rendered plant sterile & about half of plants affected on male side & half on female.

7. Hermaphrodites Pl. seed weighed 36.5 gr. 100: 79.0 52.1

11 Females Pl. seed weighed 98.7 gr. 100: 89.7

May 15' 1863— Seedlings from Female & Herm. Garden Thyme both produced plenty of both forms.

Wild Thyme from Torquay

Female plants with 160 Flower Heads, seed weighed 8.7 i.e. 200: 10.8

Hermaph. Pl. with 200 flower Heads seed weighed 4.9 200: 4.9

The female plants not quite so mature as Hermaphrodite, perhaps rather larger heads of flowers.

Seedlings from female wild Thyme, Torquay produced female & hermaphrodite plants.— June 1863.


1861. Fifty Pods of large Snap-Dragon Antirrh: freely exposed to insects produced. There were several bad pods; (but I did not count bad pods—) seed weighed 23.1 gr

50 Pods of Red Snapdragon under net (many bad pods) weighed 9.8 gr.

50 Pods of White Snap-D. under net, with pink mouth, had very few bad pods, but the seed weighed 20 gr. So that this var. is either more independent of crossing (which is improbable) or the 2 other experiment cannot be trusted. Possibly great weight of seed in this experiment many be owing to far greater number of good pods & each contained less seed.— It was clear that flowers endured much longer & did not set their pods nearly so quickly under the net.— (Used)

1861 Two Plants of French(?) Poppy with roughish leaves— Garden flower— covered & un covered.

30 Pods of Un covered plant produced 15.6 gr of seed

30 Pods of Covered Plant produced 16.5 of seed

So that actually covered plant most fertile: I tried Poppy because does not secrete nectar.




April. 21. 1862. Some cowslips originally wild plants, had been planted in my shrubbery; in 1859 had been transplanted into K. Garden & well manured; when in flower were perfectly protected by net & several flowers artificially fertilised (others not fertilised were sterile). The seedlings from these seeds, have now all flowered: some were they were raised in hot-bed & some transplanted, into sunny K Garden; some in shade in light clay & some gigantic in Peat-Bed, & there is not vestige of sign of modification, in the 765 plants thus raised & treated. The cowslips in Peat of gigantic size: those in one of clay-beds small, yet not a hairs difference in structure.—

I, also, raised a few others in Green-house & Kept under unnatural treatment, but all remained true.—

Ap. 27. 62. I have just compared the oxlips in corner of big-wood, whence as I got the seeds last year now coming up in the K. Garden. well true Bardfield oxlip— or P. Elatior— has very different appearance.— (My oxlip has yellower marks at mouth of corolla, larger flower & shorter footstalk).

There was a group of 5 or 6 plants, long & short-styled; & slightly different in tint & size have seedlings from some neighbouring plant— Both cowslips & Primroses grow mingled in this open bit of wood. Why so rare difference of insect in different districts?

I have dried my oxlips— Mem. Godron says oxlips are sterile.

These oxlips of mine are dried Feb. 19th. 1863 Four of these wild seedling oxlips have flowered & all alike; & all like Primrose, except that throat is orange instead of yellow.— April 10 All 8 plants have flowered


[Dominique Alexandre Godron (1807-1880), French botanist, zoologist and ethnologist.]



April 27' 1862. Cowslips, wild, potted.

5 flowers, blue silk Braid: long-styled, crossed homomorphically with pollen of long-styled cowslips & after 24° recrossed heteromorphically with pollen of short-styled Polyanthus; yellow centre & dark red circumference.

6 flowers with white bobbin, viz 3 on short-styled & 3 on long-styled: crossed heteromorphically with pollen of Primroses on two successive mornings.

6 flowers with thick red thread, viz 3 on short-styled & 3 on long-styled, crossed Homomorphically with pollen of Primroses on two successive mornings.

N. B. These 12 flowers crossed in order to raise Oxlips, & to see whether any difference in fertility of Heteromorphic & Homomorphic unions in two distinct species.—


& are all alike Except one with pollen & very like Cowslip Primrose, except mark in mouth of corolla darker yellow & peduncles rather longer.— One plant however has now, subsequently to common flowers, thrown up 2 naked scapes, 7 inches high, & bearing flowers exactly like the others on summit like oxlips.— This throws light on some cases recorded of two sort of flowers on same Plant.— For doub Probably crossed with primrose & & we then see how oxlips disappear.— But in digging up this plant, I find in centre of each group of long peduncles of the XX


May 1' Same lot of Cowslips.

10 long-styled short-styled (stick) heteromorphically with pollen of long-styled, white-thread

10 do. do. homomorphically — of short-styled black thread

10 short- long-styled no stick heteromorphically with pollen of short-styled, white thread

10 do do homomorphically — of long-styled, black thread

The result is given, I supp believe, in my Portfolio

Feb. 19' 63 fertilised 5 flowers on lip of Leschenaultia formosa & put in Hot-House— all failed


primroses; a short peduncle; & the peduncles of primroses spring [sketch] at various heights all round it; but some only from summits. I now find that the other plant has a minute scape in centre; but is hidden in leaves; So that all plants beautifully intermediate between Oxlips & Primrose, & do not really have two forms— Only difference that in the one plant, the scape has been Early & largely developed.

The difference in tint of colour between these & Primroses hardly perceptible. The rudimentary scape alone shows parentage. Primroses differ in tint. In real Primroses no vestige of the central Scape.



Cudham Pond.—

Aug. 10– 1864. — Now almost dry with much mud after wonderfully dry summer.— Not near Road— No infall or outfall— visited by Water-hens— Cattle & sheep may have been driven into field from distant pasturage— Dry Chalk Platform no other pool near— Long-made.—

Sparganium simplex

Potamogeton natans?

Veronica scutellata

Ranunculus flammula

Alisma plantago



Glyceria fluitans

Another grass


Cyclas Lymnea

Water Coleoptera & Hemiptera (winged)


1866 June 7th The young Carnation Plants raised from plants fert. by own individual pollen & those crossed by pollen from distinct plants, still plainly differ in vigour, size & luxuriance—Always has been so from first. There are observations recorded in later on germination.— More More of the self-fert. persisted during winter.— So it was with peloric Antirrhinum.— Aug. 16th Still plain difference in the Carnations & some are now going to flower.—

July 1866. C.C. seed from Long-styled cowslip—Poly. fert by pollen of own or same flower. The parents marked C. were fert in Greenhouse & were all long-styled & children of long-styled Hom. fertilised— So that plants to be marked C.C. & which will perhaps flower in 1867 & some did flower will be great-grandchildren of first Hom. Union, all intermediate unions having been illegitimate or Homomorphic.



Nov. 66. I have observed Euonymus, but not good case, for extremely pink; the seeds covered with thin orange coat, & these seeds are eagerly sought for by Birds—

Hooker says Magnolia seeds are bright? & pendulous by thread.

Fritz Muller. writes Oct 1, 1866—

[attached note see CUL-DAR157a.103]

These seeds are splendid crimson & as hard as ivory— I soaked for 10 hours in warmish water, & water became only slightly mucilaginous. Wd gastric juice extract more? I do not suppose there can be any external pulp.—

All looks contrived to kill seeds for good of Birds.— (I gave 2 of these seeds in dough to a cock, but they were apparently [illeg] ground up for after 60° cd not be found in excrement.) (Some other seeds of a twining Legume sent by F. Muller which hang to opened pod are red with black eye & Hooker says are like those of Abrus precatorius a Legume, or Crabs' eyes (which I think I have seen)) Hooker says in Indian Adenanthera pavonina, Mimosæ.

Could above crimson seeds be distributed on same principle as acorns?

Pomegranite— Nothing in P. Encyclop. or Loudon Encyclo.


Beauty of seeds or of inside of pods for dissemination: F. Muller. Aug. 1866

[attached note removed]

[in margin:] In Portfolio for addition to Dom. Animals, a letter with coloured drawings of other seeds.—

Passiflora gracilis pods become red, & opens with seed attached, which are covered by fibers of soft matter, I think yellow, which I fancied might be edible— The peony with inside of pods crimson & seeds dark purple; the latter covered with this layer, possibly but not probably Edible. But has not Portugal Laurel very thin coat & Privet.

Some objects beautiful for conditions— some galls on oak & scarlet Fungus.— Lucy W. says at Leith Hill nothing touches or eats the Pœony seeds.

Above good case to add to pods with winged seeds always dehiscing.—

F. Muller sends me seeds of Elaterium (Cucumb.) "seeds covered with red pulp adhering to the valves & very conspicuous."



July 26/67. Passiflora green pods, wh. when mature become rich plum-colour, squirt & irregularly burst open, exposing bright crimson seeds, enveloped in soft acid & sweet pulp.—

Dec. 11' 67 I have seen, I think in Lyell's America, that no Birds eat Barberry seed— this mistake has arisen from the seeds not being eaten till softened by first frost: a tree which I have watched is now almost denuded; & beneath it I fd Birds dung, almost made up of the seeds.—


Dec. 2d. 1866 Mr Herbert Norman of Oakley near Bromley sent me leg of Woodcock with tarsus coated with mud, which when dry weighed 8.9 grams. Planted in burnt sand,

Decr. 3rd. Dec. 8th a Monocot: plant, apparently a rush, or Luzula has germinated!!! The plant turns out Juncus bufonius or toad rush.—

[See DAR172.75.]

grows "commonly in marshy ground, especially on watery sandy Heaths." Sir J. E. Smith.— [1824, English flora, vol. 8, p. 168.]

[entry in Emma Darwin's hand:] Aug. 1867. Mr J. P. Mansell Weal. Sent me from Natal a small packet weighing under 1/2 an oz of the dung of locusts. It is believed on insufficient evidence that this disseminates seeds. On Aug. 27 the dung was put on burnt sand & Sep. 6. two grass seeds have germinated. These were imbedded within the pellets, which seem to consist chiefly of the husks of grasses. In one little pellet were 4 3 seeds, 2 1 partly crushed & 2 perfect. These latter 2 quite different kinds

Sept. 7th a Third grass. germinated.

In 3 other pellets of dung no perfect seeds.— Sept 9th A fourth Monocot. from a reticulated seed, which I extracted from pellet & placed on sand.—

Sept 24' Two more grasses./ — Oct 17' one more grass altogether = 7/

May 20 1868. One Kind of grass, of which one plant came up is named by Hooker, Eragrostis capillifolia, nees & Sporolobus elongatus, a very common Tropical & sub-tropical grass.—

(Mr Weales says Oct. 28. 68 the grass which it was thought was thus dispersed is the Lappago aliena Spr.)


Nov. 1867. I put a goose's foot on ground & both by day & night some very many small Helices of at least 3 species & 2 sp. of slugs crawled on it. The goose-foot suspended in greenhouse & another on tree by day, the Helices & slugs all dropped off in about 5 hours.

When goose or duck flies foot closes. Try this during night & whilst shells & slugs are very young—

[remaining 3 pages are blank]

[inside back cover]

p 30 & 31 Sweet Peas crossed. , 39

p 1. Hollyhocks

[printed label:]


Account Book Manufacturers,



[back cover]


This document has been accessed 2926 times

Return to homepage

Citation: John van Wyhe, ed. 2002-. The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. (

File last updated 29 July, 2023