Cattley Close, EN5

Place Name

William Cattley (1788 – August 8, 1835) was a merchant and horticulturist who lived at Cedar Lawn, 55 Wood Street, in Barnet, until his death. He was a prolific collector of plants from locations all over the world in particular cultivating orchids. In 1818 Cattley was unpacking a shipment of plants that he had received from Brazil. He noticed that the packing material used was a strange plant with tendrils. He nurtured it back to health to find it was an orchid, the first ever cultivated. His cataloguing partner John Lindley named it in Cattley’s honour as Cattleya labiata (the “corsage orchid”). Despite their successful partnership, Cattley had paid for the publication of Linley’s monograph on digitalis, Digitalia Monographia, and later for Lindley’s Collectanea Botanica (1821) a catalogue of Cattley’s plant collection.

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