JARS v52n1 - In Memoriam: Lyman Clark

In Memoriam: Lyman Clark

Lyman H. Clark, a 35-year member of the ARS, died Oct. 15, 1997. He was born in Amazonia, Mo., Feb. 5, 1902, and had lived in Newtown, Penn., for 60 years. He is survived by his dear wife of 63 years, Mary Robinhold Clark.

A graduate of the University of Missouri, Lyman worked as a copywriter and supervisor more than 30 years for the advertising agency N.W. Ayer & Son, when it was located in Philadelphia.

He was a conservationist and interested in wildlife and plants. A member of the Philadelphia Chapter in 1962, he was deeply involved in growing rhododendrons on his Newtown farm. In 1964 he and Mary joined the Princeton Chapter and remained interested members ever since then. He grew hundreds of plants, trying a vast variety of species and collecting great numbers of hybrids. His favorite was the R. degronianum that grew on the north side of the house, mature shrubs that bloomed gloriously in early spring until the devastating winter of 1995-96 when a thick snow and ice cover permitted hungry deer to reach higher and completely defoliate the plants.

For many years, Lyman participated actively in chapter projects such as the display garden, truss shows, and plant sales. He helped with educational exhibits and wrote about propagation, planting and culture, and preparing ribbon-winning trusses for shows. A paper "Crossing Rhododendrons and Art" appeared in the ARS Bulletin January 1974.

His passion for the genus Rhododendron continued into his 90s. An independent and quiet man with a ready wit and an engaging way with words, he shared his knowledge. And if you showed more interest, he was generous with rhododendron cuttings and plants - "so that they will live on."