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Bits of bamboo

In the Herbarium at RBGE, we store a huge number of sheets of archival quality paper with squashed and dried plant specimens stuck to them. These have been…

A short film on Hugh Cleghorn: Indian Forester, Scottish Laird

A short film on Indian Forester, Scottish Laird and the personalities behind it.

Sylva Exhibition Film

A short Sylva Exhibition film based on the talk with the artist

Moutan Paeonies

One of the most historically important plants in RBGE is currently in flower in the Woodland Garden, immediately to the west of the old sweet chestnut tree opposite…

Primula sikkimensis

A floriferous stand of Primula

The unseasonably dry spring has not subdued the display from the candelabra and farinose Primula species. Primula sikkimensis is a strong growing perennial with a rigid straight stem…

Dealing with DNA extraction protocol changes

It’s a horrible and unwelcome upheaval to have to change a protocol that works, but that’s the situation in which we have found ourselves with our semi-robotic DNA…

Parahebe perfoliata

Subshrub

Parahebe perfoliata is flowering profusely; it must be our climate, this mild winter, benign spring weather and the plant also has the benefit of a southerly aspect situated…

May 2017 Garden Wildlife Report

May 2017 continued the dry theme of Spring 2017 at Edinburgh. There were a few wetter days, but the ground remains very dry unless watered artificially. The last…

John Jeffrey rediscovered

160 years after the disappearance of young Scottish plant-hunter John Jeffrey, a reimagining of his missing journals finally reveals the truth behind an extraordinary adventure. In 1850, with…

Santos & Stech’s phylogeny of Octoblepharum

As far as our 2013 RBGE MSc project proposal to generate a phylogeny of Octoblepharum goes, Juan Carlos Villarreal, Noris Salazar Allen and I were clearly not the…

Losing the story with a moss from Panama City

Spring Break’s a big thing in the US, and spring of 2005, Juan Carlos Villarreal and I spent ours on a road-trip down through Louisianna, looking for the…

What’s After After the Storm

A hundred years ago, in the Spring of 1917, Europe was in the in the midst of the Great War and here in Edinburgh doctors at Craiglockhart Hospital…

Panamanian mosses from the back of the freezer

Several years back, I postdocced in Barbara Crandall-Stotler’s lab in Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. In the late Autumn of 2003, Panamanian bryologist Noris Salazar Allen spent a few…

Acer caudatum ssp. ukurunduense

Perfect green panicles

Walking out of the John Hope Gateway into the Biodiversity garden  this wide spreading specimen of Acer caudatum ssp. ukurunduense is now mature enough to flower profusely. Collected…

April 2017 Garden Wildlife Report

April 2017 started as March had ended: warm and sunny. However, this only lasted a few days and the rest of the month was much cooler and often…

Simon Whatley’s Span Table

Simon Whatley collaborated with furniture maker Jonathan Pang to produce the Span Table one of the pieces currently on show in the exhibition After the Storm in the…

What to do in your Scottish fruit and vegetable garden TODAY!

Ailanthus giraldii

Ailanthus giraldii

The young growth as bud burst occurs is an intense red. The foliage is divided and this enhances the visual appeal of the emerging new growth. A large…

Strange fruit offer lifeline to rare elms

If you are visiting the Botanics in 2017 you might see some curious objects hanging in the elm trees. This is not an art installation, but in fact…