SRGC notice of death of plantsman

Ian Young
Tue, 10 Aug 2010 06:57:34 PDT
  Death of plantsman and seed hunter: Jim Archibald

I am very sorry to tell you  of the death in the UK on the 9th of 
August 2010, of the great plantsman Jim Archibald.
His wife and fellow plant hunter, Jenny has their family with her at 
this very sad time and I know you will all join with us in sending 
our condolences to them.

Jim had been ill for some time and in spite of early signs that 
treatment was succesful, latterly his health had been failing.

There can scarcely be a single person with an interest in alpine 
plants and bulbs who is not growing plants derived from the world 
wide seed collections of the Archibalds , either directly from seed 
from Jim and Jenny's seed business JJA Seeds, or from that seed grown 
on by a multiplicity of nurseries across the world.
  The extent of their travels and the scope of their seed 
introductions is quite enormous.  Both with a great eye for a good 
plant and the determination to travel far and work hard to collect 
seed, Jim and Jenny made a formidable team.

I can think of no better way to recall the contribution that Jim and 
Jenny have made as plantsfolk  or to introduce them to anyone who 
knows nothing of them than to suggest that you read the chapter in 
Bobby Ward's book "The Plant Hunter's Garden: The New Explorers and 
Their Discoveries".
The chapter is titled " What are seeds but dreams in packets" and 
this could surely sum up the work of Jim and Jenny.

Many people will have had the pleasure of hearing Jim give talks on 
their work, inspiring the audience with tales of their exploits and 
it had been hoped that Jim would be well enough to give a talk at the 
Alpines 2011 Conference in April next year. Sadly this cannot be but 
still there are those thousands of plants growing around the world, 
giving joy to thousands of gardeners and Jim's legacy as the 
inspiration for so very many of the Plant Hunters that have followed 
in his footsteps to keep his name alive.
Jim and Jenny were a couple with firm friends and admirers in all 
corners of the world and all will feel Jim's loss and sorrow for 
Jenny at this time.

For Jenny and their daughter and son, of course, their  loss is of a 
dearly loved husband and partner and a loving father : we can only 
hope that the family can take a little comfort in knowing the level 
of respect and admiration in which Jim is regarded by so many.

Jim will be sadly missed.

  Margaret  and Ian Young

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