Sometimes seeking more can be so rewarding

Finding out more about a Cape Peninsula orchid species

A plate from the book Orchids of the Cape Peninsula
I followed up on this amazing botanist Harry Bolus seeing how his life panned out to the benefit of South African Botany

The Swiss Orchid Foundation is worth bearing in mind when looking for information on South African orchids.
Reading further In 1864 he lost his eldest son of six years, and Francis Guthrie who had become a close friend, suggested his taking up botany to ameliorate his loss. He started his botanical collection in 1865 and was soon corresponding with Joseph Hooker at Kew.
And his setbacks: he and Guthrie made their first visit to Kew, taking with them a large number of plant specimens for naming. Bolus described the period as ‘forty happy days’. Returning in the Windsor Castle in October 1876, the ship struck a reef off Dassen Island with the loss of his specimens and notes Not daunted, he set about the collection of new specimens.

She had worked as Harry’s assistant in the herbarium while she was in college, was appointed curator of the Bolus Herbarium in 1903, and retired from that position in 1955
She has the legacy of authoring more land plant species than any other female scientist, in total naming 1,494 species.
She hired botanical artist Louise Guthrie as a staff member at the herbarium.
See how they are all linked,
Bolus studied the flora of the area around the Cape of Good Hope (Cape of Good Hope - Wikipedia) (Another interesting link to follow,) especially Ericaceae and Orchidaceae
Bottom line one may find the lovely plates at the Swiss Orchid Foundation site.

That is a botanical family history of which I knew nothing. Thank you.
I am wondering why the Swiss Orchid Foundation is involved…but I’ll read on and find out.

Swiss Orchid Foundation is a remarkable site if one is looking to check SA Orchids.
The plates they display are from the books that I think were edited by Louisa Bolus.
Checked this plate |Book Author:|Harry Bolus|
|Book Title:|The Orchids of the Cape Peninsula|
|Book Editor:|Harriet M. L. Bolus & Alice M. Greene|
|Book Publisher:|Darter Bros. & Co.|
|Publishing Year:|1918|
My observation posted on iSpot

Thanks for the explanation. Agoogle search of Orchids South Frica didn’t produce the Swiss result, so this is an important source.

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JoC - I do appreciate your support -
There are so many interesting things I encounter when posting to iSpot - and think quite a few others might enjoy following them up.
I’m not sure who they may be - and their time constraints.

The people I knew doing work on ZA orchids were from CZ, I suspect the South African flora is so special that people from all over the world try to get there to study it. Important that the information is available to the local people too whcih the online herbaria provide although that is still not quite the same as having the actual sheets in the country with the DNA studies possible with the actual material.

Coming from Strelizia page 283 (the Galenia post) I see that the genus Esterhuysenia is one of those designated by Louisa Bolus.

and Mike
Not quite sure why my mind followed this route but think JoC would like the story.
Erica sociorum is Critically Endangered.
The story I was told was that it was first discovered by the two friends when taking a break, sitting on a rock, looked down and noticed this Erica.

More at PZA: 'Neville Pillans and Edith Stephens collected material of this species together and gave it to Mrs Bolus. She recorded this joint collection by calling it Erica ‘sociorum’ which means, ‘of the companions’ (Latin)
Our observation (I’ve got a lot more pics, wondering if i should add them?)

Mike can you explain Erica sociorum L.Bolus, when Neville Pillans made the discovery?

I think the name authority relates to who named it not who found it. The scientific name itself might have related to who found it but that might be discouraged these days.

I am pleased to say that David Attneborough has quite a few named after him - and as this article shows, he is delighted at the honour.

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Naming a species after yourself is considered a faux-pas. (I’ve seen species named after co-authors, which is also stretching it.) Naming species after the person who discovered them is still pretty common. When it is found necessary to rename a species, it’s quite common to name it after the authority for the original name.

Thanks Mike - I was always curious about this, where Howard Langley discovered a once-off Orchid at Cape Point -
It has never been seen again; it was growing right next to the Main Road.
I must try to find out where the specimen is to be found, and then see if he would cited as the collector - ?

Interesting you mention this as during this last summer’s fieldwork one of the botanical survey quadrats I was setting out was right in the middle of a new road that was just being built and another was under a digger that was working on site!