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on January 6th, after a short illness, to a malignant attack of
small-pox. His energy and devotion to his duties have been
acknowledged in previous reports. His work in 1905 was again
deserving of all praise."

In reviewing this report the Chief Secretary to the Government
of the Panjab wrote : — " The Lieutenant-Governor takes the
opportunity of recording his regret at the death of Mr. Hemsley,
to whose labours the improvement of the gardens has been so
largely due."

Oliver Tietjens Hemsley, the only son of Mr. W. B. Hemsley,
P.R.S., Keeper of the Herbarium at Kew, was born at Richmond,
Surrey, on February 6, 1876, so that at the time of his death he had
not yet entered his thirtieth year. He was educated at Dr. White's
School, Turnham Green, and at King's College School, London.
In 1893, when 17 years of age, he entered the Royal Gardens. In
the Garden Lectures he took a distinguished place.

In 1898 young Hemsley went to India, and on his arrival was
posted to the Cinchona Department in British Sikkim where, with
the exception of a short period during which he acted as Curator
of the Lloyd Botanic Garden, Darjeeling, he served as an
Assistant till 1903. His duties in the Cinchona Department lay
both in the factory and on the plantation. His inclinations,
however, were more towards horticulture than planting, and in
1902 he expressed a desire to be transferred to a post in the
plains, there to make himself more familiar with Indian gardening
conditions than was possible in the comparatively temperate
altitudes at which cinchona is grown, and so to qualify for
subsequent promotion.

A vacancy occurring in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Calcutta, he
was appointed Assistant Curator there in 1903. He had hardly
taken up his duties in this capacity when an opportunity was
given him of facing a difficult task. An Imperial Durbar was to
be held that winter at Delhi, and the sites of the various sections

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of the great Dnrbar camp had to be treated in such a fashion as to
prevent their appearing, as otherwise in the cold weather they most,
to be part of a dusty arid plain. The executive gardening duties
connected with the Bengal section of the camp were entrusted to
Hemsley. These he took up with enthusiasm, and— in spite of a
breakdown in health— performed so well as to earn the commenda*
tion of Major Strachey, the officer in charge of the Bengal Camp,
and of the late Mr. GoUan, Superintendent of the Saharanpur
Botanic (harden, who was in administrative charge of the
gardening operations generally.

As events transpired, young Hemsley did not return to
Bengal. The impending retirement of Mr. H. G. Hein, the
respected Superintendent of the Agri-Horticultural Gkirdens at
Lahore, was announced, and Hemsley was chosen as Hein^s
colleague and successor. The quality of Hemsley's work at Delhi
under circumstances of unusual difficulty augured well for his
success at Lahore ; nor was the anticipation belied. His work
was spoken of in high terms in successive annual reports, the last
melancholy reference being that with which this note opens.

Hemsley's was a bright and kindly disposition. Good tempered
and warm-hearted» he made many friends. He was a keen
volunteer ; while an Assistant on the Cinchona Plantation he was
an enthusiastic member of the Northern Bengal Mounted Volun-
teers ; at Lahore he was an equally enthusiastic member of the
Panjab Light Horse. This corps paid a worthy tribute to a
devoted volunteer at his funeral, which was a military one, all
the officers of the corps being present, as were officers representing
the Staff of the Lieutenant-Governor and the 1st Panjab Volunteer
Rifles. His own corps supplied the firing party, while crosses and
wreaths were sent by the Lieutenant-Governor and Lady Rivaz,
by the officers of his corps, and by the native staff of the Lahore
Garden. His friends have since decided to erect a monument
over his grave.

Hemsley married some time after taking up his appointment at
Lahore and has left a widow and an infant daughter.

John Mahon. — It is unhappily not rarely the case that the
Bulletin has to record the death of a Kew man who, while his
career has scarcely left the initial stages, has fallen a victim to the
climate of one or other of our colonies whither he had gone, full
of energy and enthusiasm, to carry on the work of some remote
botanic station.

After a long illness J. Mahon, or J. M. Browne as he was
known up to the time of his leaving Kew in 1897, died in the
University College Hospital, Gower Street, on April 6 of the
present year. An Irishman by birth, possessing many of the
admirable qualities of his countrymen, he was bom in Dublin,
May 12, 1870. He remained in his native place till he came to
Kew as a gardener in October, 1891. Having been promoted to
the position of label writer he stayed at Kew for six years,
winning for himself, by the amiability of his nature, the sterling
goodness of his character, and ability considerably above the
average, the appreciation of all those with whom he was

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asiooiated. He left Eew in May, 1897, to take up the duties
of Forester at Zomba, British Centra] Africa, where he remained
two years and a halt. An interval of about a year at home
was followed by his appointment as Assistant Curator of the
Botanic Qarden, Entebbe, Uganda. Shortly after, he became
Curator, but in the spring of 1903 his health was so unsatisfactory
that he was invalided home. His malady proved to be the
terrible ^sleeping sickness,'* a certain, but, in his case, a slow
death. He battled mimfully against the hopeless disease and the
deplorable weakness engendered by it, and for some months, from
October, 1903, to April, 1904, was employed as a temporary
assistant in the Kew Herbarium. Subsequently he joined the
staff of the Imperial Institute, but in the autumn of 1905 his
illness necessitated the relinquishment of all work, aud the
remainder of his life was passed in the hospital, where he lay
prostrate and helpless, and often in a comatose condition, till his
death on April 6 of the present year, exactly 3 years to the day
from the time he left his post in Uganda. His funeral took place
at the Richmond Cemetery on April 10, and was attended by
several of the permanent staff at Kew and the Imperial Institute.
Mahon was married, and his widow now resides in Kew.

The Gardens are indebted to him for liberal contributions of
seeds, tubers and plants, and to the Herbarium he sent several
small collections of specimens which included a number of new
species. The following plants, named in compliment to him,
commemorate his services to systematic botany : Dissotia Mahoni^
Hook, f., Bot. Mag. t. 7896 ; Ipomoea Mahoni^ C. H. Wright in
Oard. Chron. 1903, xxxiii. p. 257 ; Brillantaisia Mahoniy C. B.
Clarke in Kew Bull. 1906, p. 251 ; Mystacidium Mdhoni^ Rolfe
in Kew Bull. 1906, p. 116 ; and Lissochilus Mahoni^ Rolfe in Bot.
Mag. t. 8047. A portrait of Mahon appeared in the Oardeners^
Chronicle^ 1906, xxxix. p. 256, and his graphic descriptions of
Tropical African vegetation were published in the same journal in
1904, XXXV. pp. 115, 130, 165 and 182, and in the Journal of the
Kew Guild, 1898, p. 17, and 1903, p. 145.

S. A. S.

A. J. Jordan. — In a letter to the Director, dated Botanical
Department, Trinidad, 8th August, 1906, Mr. J. H. Hart has
written : — *' I regret to report that Mr. A. J. Jordan, of this
Department, died after a short illness of some six days on 6th
August last of pernicious remittent fever."

The late Mr. Jordan before entering Kew, which he did on
May 9, 1898, had been trained at Ballandean House, Inchture,
Perthshire, and at Forbes House, Ham, Surrey. In a letter
accompanying his application Mr. Jordan speaks of the prospect
of entering Kew as one that he had cherished for years, *'my
object being solely to learn." ^* A small man, but intelligent and
likely " is the expressive comment on his application form.

In 1899 Mr. Jordan was selected for service in the West Indies.
He reached Dominica on June 27, 1899, and after spending some
time at the Botanic Station there, so as to become accustomed to
West Indian conditions, to get to. know how to manage native

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labour, to learn the methods of keeping books and become
familiar with the details of office ,work generally, he was posted
to Montserrat as Agricultural Instructor, subsequently becoming
Curator of the Botanic Station in that Island. Early in 1905, he
left Montserrat to become Curator of the Botanic Station in
Antigua. Later in the same year he was transferred to Trinidad,
where he held charge of the Government House Gardens under
Mr. Hart till his death, which occurred, at the age of 32, in the
course of what appears to have been a somewhat general outbreak
of fever.

Mr. Jordan was a man of sincere religious convictions. He
married after reaching the West Indies and has left a widow and
one child. With exemplary forethought he had made provision
for them by adequately insuring his life.

The Old Cedars at Kew.— The death of one of the fine old Cedars
of Lebanon in the gardens unpleasantly reminds us that their
numbers are gradually and surely diminishing. The adverse
influences of London smoke and a sterile soil no doubt shorten
the lives of these trees in Kew, and their decadence has certainly
been accelerated by the large proportion of droughty summers
experienced in the Thames Valley since 1893. The particular
tree whose death we record was one of the group growing near
the Pagoda. It was 75 ft. high and its trunk was 14 ft. 2 ins. in
circumference near the base, and 11 ft. 7 ins. at 10 ft. from the
ground. It contained about 300 cubic ft. of timber. The
exceeding minuteness of the layers of wood put on in recent years
makes it difficult to ascertain the exact age of this tree by counting
the annual rings, but, as near as one can tell, it was between 145
and 150 years old. It is probable, therefore (allowing it to have
been a few years old at the time), that it was planted about the
time the Pagoda was completed (1762). This is not a great age
for the Cedar of Lebanon to attain, for there are specimens still in
healthy existence in this country known to be a century older.
But unless there comes a revolution in the methods of coal
consumption in the metropolis, even that duration of life is not
likely to be equalled by the trees planted in Kew during the last
50 years. We have recently learnt from Sir Joseph Hooker —
whose recollections of Kew go back more than 60 years — ^that,
within his memory, the Cedars of Lebanon were growing so
thickly all round the base of the Pagoda that the ground was
quite hidden from the view of anyone looking down from the
top. These trees have died one by one till only three remain.
The remainder of the big Cedars are disposed about the gardens
as follows : — Three on the mound to the west of the Pagoda
known to the workmen as " Moss (? Mosque) Hill " ; three in the
Rhododendron Dell ; two in the Herbarium grounds ; and one
near each of the following sites — Sua Temple, Brentford Gate,
Poplar collection. Flagstaff, and Victoria Gate. Most of these
(16 in all) girth from 12 to 14 ft. In addition to them, and
representing, no doubt, a later planting, are five smaller specimens
near the Rhododendron Dell, two near the Director's Office, and
one near the sunk Rose Garden,

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The specimen growing near the PlagstaflE is rather remarkable
for an enormous branch which grows out from the trunk at 6 ft,
from the ground and extends in a horizontal direction for 60 ft ;
it is 6 ft. 6 ins. in circumference near the trunk.

Lomatia obliqua.— When Mr. H. J. Elwes visited Chili in 1901-2
he collected various seeds which he presented to Kew. Among
them were seeds of Lomatia oUiqua^ R. Br., which he found
in February ''between Quillen and Junin at an elevation of
3-4,000 ft." Junin de los Andes is a town on the Argentine
frontier, and the seeds were collected in Argentine territory.
Plants were raised from them and some have since been distri-
buted under the name of Quevina avellana ?, the seedlings bear-
ing a close resemblance to seedlings of that plant. The mature
plants, however, differ widely, and it is now clear that Mr. 'Elwes'
plant is Lomatia oUiqua^ which is common in the south of Chili,
where it forms a shrub or small tree up to 40 ft. high (Bridges) ;
it is appreciated locally for its prettily grained wood which is used
for making furniture. There is no record of this species of
Lomatia having previously been grown in Europe, and as it is at
least as hardy as its relations Emhoihrium and StenocarpuSy and
is, moreover, an evergreen with large ovate serrated leaves and
axillary clusters of white flowers, it is likely to become established
in gardens.

Presentations to Museums.— Fibre from Uganda (Asdepias
aemiluna^a^ N.E. Br.), Asclepiadeae. — Mr. M. T. Dawe, Director,
Scientific and Forestry Department, Uganda, has forwarded for
the Museum a sample of fibre prepared from the stems of this
plant, which attains a height of 2-5 ft. and is found in Nile Land,
Lower Guinea, and South Central Africa. A report on this
fibre appeared in the Bulletin of the Imperial Institute, vol, iii.,
No. 4, 1906, p. 316.

Fibre from Gold Coast (Trium/etta semitriloha^ Jacq., var.
africana), Tiliaceae. — The Cort Development Syndicate, Limited,
recently submitted, dried specimens of the above plant from the
Gold Coast for determination, and subsequently presented samples
of fibre obtained from it for the Museum. The fibre had been
submitted to a London broker, who reported with regard to it that
if clean and uniform in length and strength it would realize about
£27 per ton.

Floss prom Labrador {Eriophorum vaginatum^ L.), Cyper-
aceae, — Flowering specimens of this plant collected by Sir W.
MacGregor in Chidley Peninsula, Labrador, have been placed in
Case 84, Museum No. II. — ^Under the name of Supput (Eskimo)
the silky bristles of the flowers are used to receive sparks from
two pieces of pyrites, in making fire.

Australian Grass Wrack (Posidoma australis, Hook, f.),
Naiadaceae. — A marine plant peculiar to Australian waters. A
correspondent recently forwarded for determination a sample of
fibre from this plant, with a note to the effect that large quantities


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of the fibre, washed up on the beach in certain places on
Spencer's Gulf, are sent to England for the manufacture of gun-
cotton. A similar sample was received some time ago from the
same locality, with information that it was found on the shore
below high-water mark, and about 12 ins. below the surface, the
deposit from which the sample was taken being about 6 ft thick,
and covering an area of 300 acres.

Primitivb Boxwood Sundial.— The Museum is indebted to
Mr. Edward Lovett, of Croydon, for a neatly made sundial, such
as is used by peasants in the Pyrenees. It is cylindric in shape,
3^ ins. high, and } in. in diameter. The stile or gnomon is fixed
in a slot in the movable head, which may readily be adjusted
when required for use. Upright lines at equal distances on the
cylinder indicate the hours, whilst letters around the base
represent the months of the year. See Case 103, Museum No. !•

Sbyohbllbs Products.— H.E. the Governor of the Sey-
chelles has presented to the Museum a sample of the perfume
* Ylang Ylang,* presumably obtained from the flowers of Cananga
odorcUa^ Hook. f. & Thoms. {Anoruiceae), which is the source of
the Ylang Ylang oil ol commerce. In connection with the trade
in this product, particulars given in a recent report by Messrs.
Schimmel & Co., of Leipzig and New York, are of interest.
It is stated by them that "according to the most recent
reports from Manila, dating from the end of January last, there
was then a scarcity of blossoms, and the distillation has been
interrupted in consequence ; but this is now probably past, as
a shipment has meanwhile been advised by cable. Our friends
in Manila make every possible effort to increase the production to
such an extent that the consumption can always be fully satisfied.
According to official consular reports the value of Ylang Ylang oil
exported from Manila in the year 1904-05 amounted to 100,349
dollars, i.«., about 300 dollars less than in the two preceding
years." The sample will be found in Case 2, Museum No. I.

Specimens were at the same time received of the MOZAMBIQUB
Orange (Citrus Aurantitimy L., var.), Rutaceae^ Case 20,
Museum No. I ; also fruits of Capucin (Northea sechellana^
Hook, f.), Sapotaceae. See Case 73, Museum No. I, and drawings
467, 486, and 501 in the North Gallery.

Chinese Wood Oil.— The following passage, taken from the
annual Report on tlie Botanical a^id Forestry Department^ Hong
KonQy for 1905, by Mr. S. T. Dunn, supplements the information
as regards this substance already given on pp. 117-121 of the
current volume of the Bulletin : —

** Wood-oil. — Wood-oil is abundantly produced in the Province
" of Fokien and is one of the chief products brought down the
" Min from the western part of the Province. At Buong Kang,
"near YenpingT^^^re is a large plantation of wood-oil trees, and
" as three weeks were spent there during the recent investigation
" of the flora of Fokien, the opportunity was taken to ascertain as
"much as possible as to the industry. The trees were of two
"kinds, locally known as Hwa Tung and Guong Tung. The

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** names refer to the distinguishing character of the fruit, which
" is sculptured in the first, smooth in the second. The trees were
" in flower and were easily recognised as Aleuriies cordata^ and
'' another species of the same genus which has been in cultivation
'' in the Hong Kong Botanic Gardens for many years but has not
" yet received a name. I understand from Mr. Hemsley, keeper
** of the Kew Herbarium, that it is undescribed and that he has it
" in hand at Kew." [Mr. Hemsley has now named this Aleuriies
Fordii, see Kew Bulletin, 1906, p. 120.] " The Hwa Tung {Alei^
'* rites cordata) is the most valued because all the flowers of the
"majority of trees produce fruits, from which the oil is made,
** while in the second kind a few flowers only in each cluster are
" perfect, quite 80 per cent, being male flowers. Why this kind
" is planted at all I was unable to discover. The trees are raised
" from seed and planted out when about three years old. They
"arrive at bearing in five or six years. The nuts are gathered
"when ripe, pounded up and placed in the usual Chinese oil
"presses. The pressure is applied by wedges, and the oil is
" collected and taken to market in a crude state.

"It does not appear to have been suspected before that wood-
" oil was a mixture of the products of two species. A sample of
" seeds of the new Quong Tung have been secured for trial at the
" Imperial Institute, and if they yield oil superior in quality to
"the wood-oil of commerce the tree will be tried in the New
" Territory."

Professor A. H. Church has called our attention to the following
paragraph on Chinese wood-oil in C. H. Hall's " The Chemistry of
Paints and Paint Vehicles," p. 90 : —

" The odour is very characteristic and stubbornly resists destruc-
" tion, regardless of the manner in which the oil is treated. This
" admits of its identification when present in but small proportions
" in varnishes, &c., regardless of other constituents. Another very
" interesting property is the instant change into a jelly-like sub-
" stance when heated to about 285° C. to 300° C. The material
" this produces is insoluble in all ordinary solvents, and cannot be
" melted by further heating."

In Diplomatic and Consular Reports, Annual Series, No. 3725,
p. 96 (1906), Mr. A. Hosie mentions Sesamum Oil, which is only a
semi-drying oil, as another oil used as an adulterant of wood-oil.

Prevention of Decay in Bipe Fruit.— In the Journal of the Board
of Agriculture for 1905, pp. 305-306, an account was given of a
series of experiments conducted in the Jodrell Laboratory, Kew,
with the object of ascertaining whether, by special treatment, the
period during which ripe fruit may be kept in perfect condition is
capable of being prolonged.

The rotting or fermentation of ripe fruit having been shown by
Pasteur to be due to the presence of living organisms on the
surface, the object of the research was to ascertain whether by the
destruction of these organisms the processes to which they give
rise are preventible. The fruits dealt with consisted of ripe

26509 2

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cherries, gooseberries, grapes, pears and strawberries, not specially
isolated, but purchased from local fruit shops or from street

The method of treatment employed was simple, inexpensive
and free from danger. It consisted of immersion of the fruit for
ten minutes in cold water containing 3 per cent, of commercial
formalin (=40 per cent, of formaldehyde). The result was to
show that whereas similar quantities of untreated pears placed side
by side with the disinfected examples had in ten days become so
mouldy and decayed as to be unusable, the treated individuals
remained perfectly sound. In the case of cherries and goose-
berries, seven days ; in the case of grapes and strawberries, four
days were suflBcient to render the untreated examples worthless.
In every instance the corresponding samples of fruit were perfectly
sound when the untreated samples had become unfit for use.
Various preservatives were experimentally tried but having
regard to the essential points, efficiency, simplicity, cheapness and
freedom from danger in its use, formalin stood easily first.

The method of preservation described appearing likely to be
applicable to imported as well as to home-grown fruits has been
tested again during 1906, with the result that the experience of the
previous year has been confirmed so far as home-grown fruits are
concerned. It has also been extended to other fruits such as
apples and bananas which are largely imported to this country
f i*om oversea, and shows that in these as in the case of the fruits
tested during 1905, the treatment described effectively prevents
decay. The detailed account of the experience of 1906 will
probably appear as a sequel to that of the 1905 experiments and
should be consulted. In the meantime the present opportunity is
taken of inviting the attention of colonial fruit exporters to the
results already obtained and described.

One very impoi*tant feature of this method of treatment is that
it is equally applicable to fruit which is not quite ripe, and that it
does not interfere with the normal course of ripening. The
flavour is not thus interfered with, as is so often the case when
fruit is kept for some time in a refrigerator. Another important
feature is that when only the surface of a fruit is affected by the
decay due to the presence of these destructive organisms, the cause
of the decay is destroyed and the process is sometimes checked.

In the case of fruits like strawberries, which 4ire entirely eaten,
the treated fruit should be plunged for five minutes in pure cold
water after its removal from the formalin solution. But where
the fruit has a rind or skin which is not eaten this is unnecessary
and may be omitted with advantage. The fruit after being
immersed should be placed on some soft open material to drain
and dry.

Botanical Magazine for September.— This number contains figures
of Ficus KHshnaCy C. DC, Catasettim galeritum^ Reichb. f., var.
jjachyglossumy Reichb. f., Ribes vihurnifolium^ A. Gray, Lino-
spadix Micholitziiy Ridley, and Cei^eus Scheerii^ Salm-Dyck. The
Ficus is a new species most nearly allied to F. hengalensisy Linn.,

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and is remarkable in having cup-shaped leaves^ the inside of the
cap being formed by the under side of the leaf, a condition
hitherto unknown. The Kew plant was received from the Royal
Botanic Gardens, Calcutta, in 1902, and flowered for the first time
in 1905. It is a native of India, but the precise locality is
unknown. The variety of the rare Brazilian Catasetum galeritum
was figured from material sent to Kew by Sir Trevor Ijawrence,
Bart., with whom it flowered in February last. The female
flowers of this species are unknown. Rihes vifmrnifolium is a
very distinct species belonging to the section Ribesia, and is a native
of Lower California and Santa Catalina Island. The persistent

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