5 OCTOBER 1934, Page 17

Sowing the Wild Such zeal as the Alpine gardeners evince

has its dangers. Just as oologists are very fond of birds, that is of taking away their eggs, so a gardener may be very fond of plants, that is of digging them up, but zeal for preservation is very strong among gardeners and the eradicator loses caste. Some few rerhaps over-preserve. In a certain wild cwm, or corrie, in Snowdonia the searcher for plants may come suddenly upon flowers that altogether startle him. Here is the giant lily; here the blue meconopsis, brought not so long ago from

the roof of the world " in Asia by Mr. Kingdon Ward ; to further search may reveal other lilies, other exotics. The reference is obvious. Some ardent botanist-has made a garden the wild, has followed the example of the gardener (or

humorist) who scattered seed on the-waste sites of Kingsway and set the world wondering at the way of a seed in the air. What a miracle that some two score of plantS should have sprung up on a mid-London waste ! Such semi-wild gardens are ,not to be altogether condemned. Mr. Evans' garden, for example, on Boars Hill. Oxford, is more than pardonable ; it is admirable ; but such experiments must be very carefully defined, and indeed confessed, if the botanist is to exercise- his craft with any pleasure or any profit to the history of plants.