A Report On An Asian Collecting Trip
John Patrick, Richmond, California
Having a specific interest in non-continental Asian species and the opportunity to make collections of both seed and plant material, I feel the following report necessary as a matter of clarification pertaining to seed sent to the Seed Exchange.
Collections were made in Japan, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Among the many in Japan who were of assistance in plant and seed collecting. I make special mention of Mr. Teruo Takeuchi, an ARS member whose untiring efforts and introductions to enthusiasts and growers are a continuing source of amazement. Some of the below mentioned seed lots were not large enough for general distribution through the seed exchange. They are identified with an (*). The numbers preceding each seed lot are mine and are used to identify each lot from my notes.
681101 R. fauriei var. brachycarpum; C. W. Sado Island, Japan Ca. 1200 M. Pink flowered and rather large leaf. 681102 R. fauriei var. brachycarpum; C. W. Erimo Point, Hokkaido, Japan. Sea Level. From a white to pink flowered population. Small leaf; magnificent plant form. * 681104 R. makinoi; C. W. Horaiji, Aichi-ken, Japan. * 681105 R. metternichii var. kyomaruense album; C. W. Izu Peninsula, Shizuoka-ken, Japan. * 681121 R. metternichii; Dwarf Form, C. W. Mt. Mimata, Kyushu, Japan. * 681122 R. keiskei; Dwarf Form; C. W. Yakushima, Japan. * 681123 R. keiskei; C. W. Chiba-ken, Japan. Yellow flower with red spotting. * 681124 R. aureum; C. W. Mt. Midori, Daisetsu, Hokkaido, Japan. Large, deep colored flower.
The following seed from Taiwan was collected through arrangement with Dr. Hsu, Taxonomist, Taiwan. My visit to Alishan at the foot of Mt. Morrison was assisted by Mr. Chen and Mr. Wu.
681106 R. pseudochrysanthum; C. W. Mt. Morrison, Taiwan. Ca. 3800 M. 681107 R. kawakamii; C. W. Alishan, Taiwan. Ca. 2100 M. 681108 R. ellipticum; C. W. Alishan, Taiwan. Ca. 2100 M. * 681109 R. morii; C. W. Small leaf form. Mt. Morrison, Taiwan. Ca. 3300 M. 681110 R. morii; C. W. Mt. Morrison, Taiwan. Ca. 3100 M. 681111 R. morii; C. W. Mt. Morrison, Taiwan. Ca. 3000 M. 681112 R. rubropilosum; C. W. Mt. Morrison, Taiwan. Ca. 3300 M. 681113 R. rubropilosum; C. W. Mt. Morrison, Taiwan. Ca. 2800 M. * 681114 R. nakaharai; C. W. Mt. Seven Star, Taiwan. Ca. 800 M. * 681115 R. nakaharai; C. W. Mt. Seven Star, Taiwan. Ca. 700 M. * 681120 R. oldhamii; C. W. Mt. Tai-tun, Taiwan. Ca. 850 M.
The following seed from Hong Kong was personally collected. A more complete description of this collecting trip appears elsewhere in this issue. (See: "Riddle of a Missing Species Solved".)
* 681116 R. hongkongense; C. W. Ma On Shan, N. T. Hong Kong. Ca. 1200 M. * 681117 R. farrerae; C. W. Ma On Shan, N. T. Hong Kong. Ca. 1200 M. * 681118 R. farrerae; C. W. Ma On Shan, N. T. Hong Kong. Ca. 1000 M. * 681119 R. simiarum; C. W. Ma On Shan, N. T. Hong Kong. Ca. 1250 M.
In conclusion, it seems necessary here to indicate my agreement with one of the aims of The American Rhododendron Society which is to introduce species and variations of species into cultivation. This, more than a professional, scientific evaluation is the aim here. To this end, wherever facilities were available, they were used. Many people assisted in the plant and seed collections. In many cases the author did not visit the populations. This was especially true in Japan where rhododendrons have been known for many hundreds of years and classified in some manner or other. There are many collectors in Japan and investigation indicates that the populations in Japan are well known to the many enthusiasts and nurserymen; especially when forms and varieties are taken into account. Upon investigation one finds many helpful people all over Japan.
Finally, I want to thank my wife Masako for her translating without which I would never have been able to make the collections. It was through her efforts that investigations were carried on and also live plant shipments were handled by her as pertains to quarantine permits and expediting. Probably one of the most important ingredients in collecting and raising rhododendrons is an understanding, helpful wife.
At this point, it seems only fair to mention the Plant Quarantine Division of the United States Department of Agriculture, San Francisco. With the exception of some plants infested with rust, plants were inspected, treated and released almost immediately. When importing plants be sure to contact your local forwarding agent. He will take your plants to Customs; then to Plant Quarantine. You will then be able to pick them up personally from Quarantine. Plants should be brought home immediately, washed thoroughly, repotted and covered with plastic bags then placed under GroLux lamps until growth buds start to break, usually about two weeks. At this time, they should be gradually opened and can be hardened off as soon as adequate growth starts. My last shipment from England came through beautifully and all plants are in good growth. I fully expect to save 100% of the shipment. Two previous shipments did not fare as well, but this was due to shipping errors as I was not informed of Flight Arrival times. Be sure to get your plant import permit and along with it a letter from Hoboken allowing the plants to be dipped in lieu of methyl bromide gas fumigation.