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Euan Cox


1893 - 1977

Plant-hunter. Born into a noted Dundee family of jute mill-owners, Cox was educated at the University of Cambridge. He spent the First World War working in the Propaganda Bureau of the Foreign Office as secretary to John Buchan (1875 - 1940). He accompanied English plant hunter and garden writer Reginald Farrer on an expedition to Burma (1919), returning to London the following year with several new introductions, including Rhododendron mallotum. Farrer died in Burma, leaving Cox responsible for classifying and distributing their collections. Cox went on to publish Farrer's Last Journey (1926), recounting the story of the expedition, and the Plant Introductions of Reginald Farrer (1930). Cox opened a bookshop in Charing Cross Road in London, although he returned to Dundee to help run his family jute business in 1931. He began developing the garden at Glendoick House from the early 1920s, using some of the material he had left from his trip to Burma, but was able to focus on the venture from 1944 when he took ownership of the house on the death of his father.

Cox was the Gardening Editor of Country Life magazine and, in 1928, founded the periodical New Flora and Silva which described new plant introductions coming to Europe from expeditions from across the globe and edited this until 1946. He wrote a number of books including Primulas for Garden and Greenhouse (1928), with George Taylor (1904-93), Plant Hunting in China (1945), Modern Rhododendrons (1956), with his son Peter Cox (b.1934), Modern Shrubs (1958) and Modern Trees (1961). He contributed to George Taylor's noted book on Meconopsis and to a further book on the Journeys and Plant Introductions of George Forrest (1952).

Cox was awarded the Royal Horticultural Society's Victoria Medal of Honour for outstanding services to horticulture (1954).


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