IN THE SCOTTISH HIGHLANDS
Ecology and Adaptation to their Insect Visitors
ALEXANDER EDWARD HOLDEN
WITH PHOTOGRAPHS BY
ROBERT M. ADAM
OLIVER AND BOY
EDINBURGH; TWEEDDALE COURT
LONDON; 98 GREAT RUSSELL STREET, W.C.
From a very early age I have been attracted and
fascinated by the beauty and charm of our wild flowers.
After my first visit to the Scottish Highlands, I
returned home with a considerable number of specimens which became the
nucleus of a now extensive herbarium. This visit awakened a new interest
in plants in general which has ripened into an absorbing and fascinating
study and hobby.
I have returned many times to the Highlands since that
memorable first holiday there and during these periods I took notes of
everything of interest with regard to the flowering plants I came across.
I came to realize that there was no book dealing
especially with plant life in the Highlands and that a close study of the
flora necessitated wading through technical general floras and botanical
works. I realized how many people must be put off from a more intimate
knowledge of the Scottish mountain plants for this reason.
I therefore decided to write this book with the idea of
bringing the plants of the Highlands into a single volume, and to
incorporate any interesting points with regard to their adaptations to
habitat and insect visitors as well as their distribution, so that the
great number of people interested in our mountain flora may be encouraged,
like myself, to become absorbed in its study.
I have seen and examined almost every plant described
in this book and have visited most parts of the Highlands in search of
them. The writing of the book has entailed the reading of many articles
and works dealing with the British flora. I am greatly indebted to the
books of P. Knuth, Muller and Darwin, Tansley’s The Vegetation of the
British Isles, and various publications of the Scottish Mountaineering
Club. This has all been done in my spare time which, owing to official
duties, is all too limited.
The beautiful photographs have been supplied by Robert
M. Adam, formerly of the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh, who put his
magnificent photographic collection of Scottish plants and scenery at my
disposal. I can only regret the high cost of production limited the
number that could be used in my book. [Note: Pictures will be added to
this web edition at a later date]
The book would never have reached completion without
the hard work and devotion of my wife, who not only did all the typing,
but encouraged me in every way.