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Misspelled Golden Star under an Overcast Sky. Leucadendron chamelaea, Witsenberg Conebush, Temperate House, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, England, United Kingdom

So I went again today to the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew as I do everytime I have the pleasure of being in London. But this visit was a bit different because I'd been kindly invited to come to the marvelous Herbarium. My host was impressively knowledgeable and I'm ever so grateful for her invitation to that Amazing Institution. She's from South Africa, and I'm posting this Leucadendron chamelaea in her honor... Then through the drizzle and light rain I carried on.

'Witsenberg' of the common name of this Protea refers to the Witsenberg State Forest in the Western Cape where it - though Red-Listed - can be seen 'in the wild'. I don't much care for another name: Glutinous Protea. It reminds me too much of the porridges of my youth.

What's in a name? one might well ask. I noticed this 'Chamelaea' labeled in the Temperate House as 'Chamalaea'. And on the internet it sometimes goes by that name, too. This must be a mistake: the word comes from the Greek and means as much as 'low', 'dwarf', 'creeping'', and it's spelled 'ChamElaea' (as the IPNI has it, according to its rules). This might sound like a bit of carping. It's not. As many of you will know, looking up names on the internet becomes very hard if there's even a slight error in spelling. And in botanical taxonomy such differences invariably lead to havoc. Though the Golden Star itself could care less, I would guess!

PS The light was very bad so this photo isn't as DOFfed as I would want, but I couldn't resist the temptation of being a finicky grammarian.

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Taken on May 9, 2012