I have been extremely fortunate to have taken part in 3 plant expeditions to Yunnan
province in SW China. Our groups were there under the sponsorship of the Kunming
Botanical Garden, which provided us with guides, lodging and transportation. The
first trip was in May into June, 1996, for four weeks, to observe the plants in the
wild, and to gather a small amount of material for propagation. The second trip was
in Sept., 1997, and the third trip was in September of 2000, for seed collecting.
They were unforgettable experiences and very productive both for the plants and seeds
we came home with, and in the relationships we established.
Yunnan province in Southwest China is a very diverse and rich botanical area, ranging
from the subtropical in the south, where it borders Viet Nam, to very high alpine
areas (23,500 feet) in the northwest corner on the border of Tibet, where it follows
the southern arm of the Himalayas. Here, on only 4% of the land mass of China, over
60% of the species that grow in China are found, with a large percentage that only
grow in Yunnan. We saw so much, but we barely scratched the surface.
Included is my full journal account of the first trip, and a brief revisit of the