George Don

For the general, see George Don (governor).

George Don (29 April 1798 – 25 February 1856) was a Scottish botanist.

George Don was born at Doo Hillock, Forfar, Angus, Scotland on 29 April 1798. His father, also named George Don, was Superintendent of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh in 1802 and his mother was Caroline Clementina Stuart. George was the elder brother of David Don, also a botanist. The younger George Don became foreman of the gardens at Chelsea in 1816. In 1821 he was sent to Brazil, the West Indies and Sierra Leone to collect specimens for the Royal Horticultural Society. Most of his discoveries were published by Joseph Sabine, although Don published several new species from Sierra Leone.

Don's main work was his four volume A General System of Gardening and Botany, published between 1832 and 1838 (often referred to as Gen. Hist., an abbreviation of the alternative title: A General History of the Dichlamydeous Plants). He revised the first supplement to Loudon's Encyclopaedia of Plants, and provided a Linnean arrangement to Loudon's Hortus Britannicus. He also wrote a monograph on the genus Allium (1832) and a review of Combretum. He died at Kensington, London, on 25 February 1856.

The television gardener Monty Don is a great-nephew.[1]

The plant species authored by George Don include:

Selected publications

See also

List of Australian plant species authored by George Don


  1. Presenter: Monty Don (2015-11-29). "The 19th Century". The Secret History of the British Garden. BBC Two.
  2. IPNI.  G.Don.


  • Hall, Norman (1978). Botanists of the Eucalypts. CSIRO, Melbourne. ISBN 0-643-00271-5. 
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