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New Zealand Plants and their Story

Raoul and the Botany of Banks Peninsula

Raoul and the Botany of Banks Peninsula.

The visit of the French to Akaroa in 1840, and the narrow escape from a colony of that nation being established on New Zealand soil, are matters of general history. Less well known is the fact that page 18
Fig. 5.—Raoulia australis. Scoria Desert, Mount Tongariro.Lands Department.] [Photo, L. Cockayne.

Fig. 5.—Raoulia australis. Scoria Desert, Mount Tongariro.
Lands Department.] [Photo, L. Cockayne.

page 19accompanying the expedition was an enthusiastic botanist. Raoul by name, the surgeon of the corvette "L'Aube." He collected most assiduously the plants of Banks Peninsula, and also those of the Bay of Islands. His services to New Zealand science are kept ever green through, the name of that genus of most interesting plants, Raoulia, (fig. 5), bestowed on them in his honour by Sir Joseph Hooker. Raoul's results were published in a splendid work, written by himself, and illustrated with fine plates, entitled "Choix de Plantes de la Nouvelle Zélande." One of the species discovered by Raoul (Pittosporum obcordatum) in the neighbourhood of Akaroa has never been found there since his visit, but lately a few plants have been discovered near Kaitaia, in northern Auckland.