Nargs Bulletin Fall '79

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externmed
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Joined: 2010-03-01
Nargs Bulletin Fall '79

Found an old Bulletin. Stonecrop Nursery was advertising, and Linc Foster was discussing Rupert Barneby.

Ripley and Barneby were partners, life-long rock gardeners(!), eccentric, brilliant, out of the box thinkers, and major forces in rock gardening, botany, and modern art. There is a sketch of their lives in a book titled "Both". Their last (of many) great rockgardens, in Long Island, was a 3 dimensional work of modern art forming a collection of microclimates for the most challenging western xerophytes. This was in the 60s and may have been advanced (in it's own unique way), beyond anything that will ever happen again. I picked up the book on line for a few bucks. For someone who ponders the human condition, it a fascinating and often gut-wrenching story of two great rockgardners who lived in other dimensions from the herd of common men.

I wonder if anyone remembers the gardens or the partners: Ripley and Barneby? Are there more pictures?

--Charles Swanson - Massachusetts USA

Booker
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Title: Member
Joined: 2010-01-30

I have heard Anne Spiegel refer to them quite reverently as we drove past the location of their final house and garden - perhaps we could invite her to share her reminiscences ... please?

Cliff Booker A.K.A. Ranunculus
On the moors in Lancashire, U.K.
Usually wet, often windy, sometimes cold ... and that's just me!

Anne Spiegel
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-01-26

Unfortunately, I never met Rupert Barnaby.  Norman Singer had discussed the possibility of inviting him to speak to the Berkshire Chapter, but he was in his 90s at the time and it didn't work out.  He was living at the New York Botanical Gardens, Dwight Ripley having died some years earlier. The farm he shared with Dwight Ripley is only a few miles away from my house, but there is nothing left of the garden they made there.  I mentioned this to Lincoln Foster years ago and he told me that when they moved to Long Island they took the garden (the plants) with them.  I have seen Linc's pictures of their garden in Long Island, which was basically extremely contemporary-looking raised beds with wonderful plants, just a total departure from the farm.
There are many reasons for the "reverence" Cliff mentioned. First, Rupert Barnaby wrote Volume Three, Part B "Fabales" (with the exception of the genera Pediomelum and Psoralidium) of  THE INTERMOUNTAIN FLORA.  This book is one of my bibles.  He had a special interest in Astragalus.  There's one that is named for him.  I had the great pleasure of meeting Noel and Patricia Holmgren several times and they told me they had botanized with him.  They described him as the best Taxonomist in America.  One time they were pulling into an area to camp and at twenty miles per hour he was saying "STOP".  He had spotted an unknown astragalus.  They had a number of other Barneby stories, all attesting to his great depth of knowledge and skill as a taxonomist.  I wish I could have met him.

Booker
Booker's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-01-30

Many thanks for your speedy and informative reply Anne ... I must locate a copy of 'Both' here in the U.K.

The following link may be of interest:-

http://www.fna.org/Newsletter/Volume/V14n4

Cliff Booker A.K.A. Ranunculus
On the moors in Lancashire, U.K.
Usually wet, often windy, sometimes cold ... and that's just me!

Mark McD
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-12-14

Booker wrote:

Many thanks for your speedy and informative reply Anne ... I must locate a copy of 'Both' here in the U.K.

The following link may be of interest:-

http://www.fna.org/Newsletter/Volume/V14n4

Interesting link Cliff.  I am reminded that in my days of perusing lists of out-of-print botanical books from purveyors of such publications, I was able to get my hands on a copy of Rupert Baneby's Atlas of North American Astragalus - Part 1 - The Phacoid and Homaloboid Astragali, 1964, 596 pages.  I was never able to find the companion Part 2 volume :'(

Mark McDonough
Massachusetts, USA, near the New Hampshire border USDA Zone 5
antennaria at aol.com
 

IMYoung
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-01-31

For those unfamiliar with the book "Both", this link may be of interest:
http://www.douglascrase.com/both__a_portrait_in_two_parts_94562.htm

Ian  and/or Margaret Young ( -here it is usually Margaret)

Aberdeen , North East Scotland, UK
Zone 8a

www.srgc.net

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