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Roy Lancaster

Articles: Roy Lancaster

In 1995, three relatively unknown horticultural upstarts found themselves along the Jaljale Himal, a high elevation ridge running into the extremely remote northeastern corner of Nepal. It was late autumn and our tents were frequently covered with snow in the mornings. Each night, Bleddyn and Sue Wynn-Jones and I would gather in the cook’s tent to savor our warm onion soup. During these evenings, we took turns reading passages from the only book we had brought along, Plant Hunting in Nepal by Roy Lancaster; an appropriate selection as we were retracing his footsteps during his times on this ridge twenty-four years earlier. More than merely a means to help us decode the botany we were surrounded by, we read the book for the infectious voice of awe and enthusiasm that the author conveyed. We were more acutely appreciative of where we were and precisely what we were doing.

It is the embodiment of this all-consuming passion for the natural world that is brought together in Roy Lancaster’s accounting of his 80 years, and counting, journey in My Life with Plants. One is invited into his world as a young lad in Lancashire in northwest England. It was here that the story begins with a b...


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