My dear Henry
You have no time to lose in sending me directions for flowers at Genoa – for which we set out the 6th or 8th & from thence go to Turin & over Mt Cenis to Geneva. – We think of leaving this abt the 6th or 8th of April – we shall be 4 or 5 days going to Genoa & a week or ten days there – so you Now know all our places & must feed me accordingly. I shd like to have yr Letter here as it will tell me abt the Corniche. I have got a gt many roots of Orchis Robertiana – which I believe Risso <1> names Longibracteata. it is not a pretty colour but handsome from the size of its leaves & height
h of the plant as well as long spike of flowers. Why did you not tell me of L’Oiseleur’s Flora gallica <2> before? Risso has lent me de Candolle’s Botany <3> which has been useful & I have sent to Marseilles to try & get it as it will be useful to me on the journey as he gives many of the flowers of the North of Italy. – I have found 4 Andropogons here the Ischæmium – the distachyon the hirtum – & Contorta, which we found at Barnfri[?] Bonfri & which Risso says is an African plant – it is very remarkable from the way in which the top is contorted & twisted together. – I have not seen the Ophrys lutea yet, but will certainly try for roots. I was sadly afraid the Coris Monspeliensis wd not blow while I was here, but to my gt delight I found it yesterday with all the heads formed & in a week I think it must be out. The Tulipa Oculis solis is out in some places but not the clusiana – nor the Hyacinth you mention. – I was quite enchanted yesty by finding a plant of the Pteris Cretica, in a ravine that goes out, or rather comes into the valley of Magnan it is most elegant & I have got two roots of it – The Hall here is a perfect garden – with plants growing of all sorts. – I am in hopes the bulbs & anemonies will be sufficiently withered to take dry which will give me much more space for other plants. – I wish there was a chance of the Coriaria Myrtifolia growing out of doors in our climate it is so handsome & the flowers so odd & pretty. – But you can have no idea of the dryness here – it is only by chance in a particularly shady place that we can find any thing.
Write soon I beg of you –
C A Lemon
Hotel de la Terrasse
Rue de Rivoli
1. Antonio or Antoine Risso (1777–1845), natural scientist.
2. Probably Jean Louis Auguste Loiseleur-Deslongchamps, Flora Gallica, seu Enumeratio Plantarum in Gallia sponte nascentium (1806), or Notice sur les plantes à ajouter à flore de France (Flora gallica); avec quelques corrections et observations (Paris: JG Sajou, 1810).
3. Augustin Pyramus (or Pyrame) de Candolle (1778-1841), Swiss botanist, Elements of the philosophy of plants: containing the principles of scientific botany; nomenclature, theory of classification, phytography; anatomy, chemistry, physiology, geography, and diseases of plants. Translated from the German (Edinburgh: William Blackwood, 1821).