"John Day (1824-1888) was an eminent English orchid grower and collector who flourished from the early 1850s until the late 1880s. From 1862 he not only grew orchids but also painted watercolours of the plants in his own collection at High Cross, Tottenham, and in other major collections in and around Victorian London.
His paintings of over 2,300 orchids bound in 53 'scrapbooks', constitute a unique archive recording these beautiful flowers, introduced into England from around the world when orchidmania was at its zenith." "Day's paintings are not only beautiful: they are also of real scientific value. Day often sent pressed flowers and copies of his paintings to Professor Heinrich Reichenbach of Hamburg, who subsequently deemed many of them new to science. Day's illustrations, therefore, are often of the 'type' plant - the plant upon which the new name was based." "The Day archive is used daily by scientists and horticulturists at Kew but has never been published or available more widely. It is an incomparable record of the introduction of novelties from around the world - particularly the New World, India and the Far East - the early hybrids and spectacular species that have been lost to horticulture."--BOOK JACKET.
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