Showing 229 results

People & Organisations

Davidian, Hagop H.

  • DHH
  • Person
  • 1907-2003

Born Cyprus 1907; died 2003
Hagop "David" Davidian graduated in botany from Edinburgh University in 1946 and in 1947 was offered a post at Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh by Sir William Wright Smith, Regius Keeper, to work on the taxonomy of rhododendrons. Rhododendrons became his life long specialism and enthusiasm. He contributed regularly to the RHS Rhododendron and Camellia Yearbook and at one stage identified 2,000 rhododendrons from the Arnold Arboretum in the USA. Honoured twice by the RHS and in Sweden, after his retirement in 1972 he set to work writing, in four volumes, books on the genus based on the Balfourian system.
Source; cuttings and obituary files

Dickson, Prof. Alexander

  • DPA
  • Person
  • 1836-1887

Born Edinburgh 1836; died Peeblesshire 1887
Alexander Dickson graduated MD from Edinburgh University in 1860, lectured in botany at the University of Aberdeen and in 1866 was appointed to the chair of botany at Dublin University, returning to Scotland as professor of botany at Glasgow until 1879. He was then appointed professor of botany at Edinburgh University (the first appointee solely to this discipline) and Regius Keeper of the Royal Botanic Garden, a post he held from 1880 until his death. While in post he inherited a number of problems over integrating the Garden with the Arboretum which remained unresolved. He was regarded as an excellent research and field botanist, his studies including work on phyllotaxis, flower and embryo development and carnivorous plants. He published around 50 papers in a number of journals including the Transactions of the Botanical Society of Edinburgh, of which he was twice president. He died in 1887 while curling near his Peebleshire home.
Sources: Dictionary of National Biography; HR Fletcher and WH Brown ‘The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh 1670-1970’; (Deni Bown, ‘4 Gardens in One’); (R. Desmond ‘Dictionary of British and Irish Botanists and Horticulturalists)

Davis, Peter Hadland

  • DPH
  • Person
  • 1918-1982

Born Somerset 1918; died Edinburgh 1992
Peter Davis’s interest in botany began in 1937 with a training post at Ingwersen's Alpine Plant Nursery in East Grinstead. In 1938 he set off on his first botanical expedition, as an amateur and on his own initiative; early correspondence with Sir William Wright Smith at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh had dissuaded him from a more ambitious trip to the Andes. He visited Greece, the Middle East and Turkey, starting herbarium collections, but had to break off his trip in 1939 with the commencement of World War II. He was called up into the army and served until 1945, spending part of his time in Cairo. Immediately after he was demobbed, Davis moved to Scotland to study botany at the University of Edinburgh, taking a B.Sc. followed by a PhD. Awarded in 1952 and later a DSc. (1964). His PhD. Thesis on the taxonomy of Middle East Flora was the foundation for the project which was to become his life’s work on the Flora of Turkey and the East Aegean Islands. The first volume was published in 1965, the tenth and last in 1988. During the 1950s and 1960s Davis made many overseas trips, collecting plants in Kurdistan, Russia, Turkey and the Middle East, eventually accumulating 50,000 herbarium gatherings. In the 1970s he became reader then professor in Taxonomic Botany at Edinburgh University and was an honorary associate of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, providing the last formal link between the university and Garden, where his Turkish herbarium collections now reside. He received many awards over his lifetime including the Cuthbert Peek Award of Royal Geographical Society, the Gold Medal of the Linnaean Society of London, the Neill Medal of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and was honoured by the Turkish government for his outstanding achievements in science. His other interests included modern art – his collection was exhibited at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in 1964 - and Wemyss pottery. Under the terms of his will he endowed the Davis Expedition Fund, to assist Edinburgh students to undertake biological fieldwork abroad.
Sources: obituary folder; personal correspondence (IH); Deni Bown, ‘4 Gardens in One’.

Drummond, Thomas

  • DRU
  • Person
  • 1793-1835

Scottish botanist and plant collector, brother of James Drummond. Took over George Don's nursery after his death.

Fish, David Sydney

  • DSF
  • Person
  • 1881-1912

Gardener and Foreman at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh before becoming Secretary and Garden Superintendent of the Horticultural Society in Alexandria, Egypt between 1906 and 1912. Skilled photographer. Wrote Book of the Winter Garden in 1906. Son of David Taylor Fish (1824-1901)

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