Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria
Collected in India in 1828 before emigrating to Tasmania in 1831. Manager of Lawrence's estate 'Formosa'. Collected in Tasmania and Victoria, with the encouragement of Gunn. Moved to Victoria in 1840-1841. Collected extensively on his property 'Wando Vale' near Casterton, Victoria, from at least January 1842-May 1844, and in the south-east of South Australia. His Tasmanian collections were forwarded to Gunn, and thus are mainly at K, with some at E, HO and MEL. He returned to England in the mid-1850s with a personal collection of 4000 Victorian specimens which he donated to W.Hooker, and these are also in K. A few specimens are also in MEL.
He had a high estimation of his own knowledge of botany, asserting in a letter to Sir William Hooker at Kew in November 1854:
"With the exception of the late Mr Robert Lawrence, Mr Ronald Gunn, and our much-respected ex-Governor, Mr La Trobe, I never met any individual resident who knew anything more about Australian plants than myself"
[ The omission of Mueller is remarkable ]
He is honoured in the orchid name Calochilus robertsonii, and in Ranunculus robertsonii.
Note: mentioned in an article in Australian Garden History 30 (1) July 2018, p.17-18
Extracted from: A.E.Orchard (1999) A History of Systematic
Botany in Australia, in Flora of Australia Vol.1, 2nd ed.,
ABRS. [consult for source references]