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Botanical Discovery in New Zealand: The Visiting Botanists

Cook's Third Voyage

page 22

Cook's Third Voyage

Cook's third voyage to New Zealand added little to our botanical knowledge, as he visited only Queen Charlotte Sound, remaining there for just over a fortnight. However, Dr W. Anderson, surgeon on board the Resolution, wrote a brief account of the plants and birds of Queen Charlotte Sound. He recorded two kinds of large trees, the rimu and a tree ‘not unlike a myrtle’. (This would be one of the species of beech.) He also records the karaka, kawakawa, supplejack, manuka, flax, celery, and scurvy grass; and mentions the measures Cook took to prevent scurvy. From the rimu was made a decoction which was fermented with treacle or sugar. This was the spruce beer first made at Dusky Sound during the second voyage. The celery and scurvy grass ‘were boiled every morning with wheat ground in a mill and with soup for breakfast, and also amongst the pease soup for dinner'; and tea was made from manuka leaves.