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Darwin Correspondence Project

From H. M. Wilkinson   15 September 1874

Bisterne | Parsonage | Ringwood

Dear Professor Darwin

I have been down this afternoon to the Utricularia but it is almost gone. It appears to have broken up into little pieces of a few inches long, such as some I have sent.1

And this seems to be natural, as there has been no disturbance of the other weeds. I searched diligently to find any that had sunk to the bottom but in vain: The plant is no longer on the top of the water, except a few small pieces but lying submerged on the frogs bit with which it grows. It seems to me to be decaying and I think will have decayed, all at any rate, except the stem, before it reaches the bottom, if it ever does so.

The greater portion of what I have sent consists of the broken pieces which I found half floating— The one or two longer pieces are apparently late flowering specimens. All the flowers have disappeared for nearly a month.

Believe me | To be your’s very truly | H. M. Wilkinson

I could not find one long plant like those we got earlier.

Sepr 15. 1874


Wilkinson had previously sent CD observations and specimens of Utricularia (bladderwort; see letters from H. M. Wilkinson, 18 July 1874 and 5 August 1874. He is acknowledged in Insectivorous plants, p. 395 n. No letters from CD to Wilkinson have been found.


Insectivorous plants. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1875.


Utricularia has broken into pieces and appears to be decaying.

Letter details

Letter no.
Henry Marlow Wilkinson
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 58.1: 91–2
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 9640,” accessed on 26 October 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 22