Collecting localities



Biographical data


Elmer, Adolph Daniel Edward


(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 1: Cyclopaedia of collectors)

(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 5: Cyclopaedia of collectors, Supplement I)

(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 8: Cyclopaedia of collectors, Supplement II)


Born: 1870, Vandyne, Wisconsin, U.S.A. Died: Apr. 17, 1942, Manila, Luzon, P.I.



Educated at Washington Agric. College, M. A. Leland Stanford Jr University (1903). Since 1904 he settled as a plant collector in the Philippines, originally in the employ of the Bureau of Science (until 1905); he made extensive travels there and in Borneo too. He made a botanical exploration of the Pacific Coast States, probably before his coming to the Philippine Islands.

Collected in California prior to 1903.

Editor of the ‘Leaflets of Philippine Botany’, in which more than 1500 new species were described, and besides a few new genera and varieties, mostly by Elmer himself.

Several plants were named after him, including some genera of Fungi and Musci.


Collecting localities:

Philippines. c. 1903-04. Luzon: Prov. of Union and Benguet.-1904. Luzon: Mt Santo Tomas and Baguio (May); Lamao Forest Reserve, Mt Mariveles (Nov.).-1905. Luzon: Sorsogon (Nov.).-1906. Leyte (Jan.); Luzon: Los Baños (Apr.); Mt Banahao (= Banajao) (May); Lucban in Tayabas Prov. (May).-1907. Luzon: Baguio (March); Lucban (May).-1908. Negros: Cuernos Mts, Dumaguete (March-June), near the Bonyao River.-1909. Mindanao: Todaya (Mt Apo) (Apr.-Oct.), summit of Mt Calelan etc.; Cebu (Oct.).-1910. Isl. of Romblon (March); Isl. of Sibuyan: Magellanes (Mt Gitinggiting) (March-May); Isl. of Samar: Basay (June). -1911. Palawan: Puerto Princesa (Mt Pulgar and Brooks Point) (Febr.-May).-1912. Mindanao:1 landed at Surigao (early part of July); Tubay; Cabadbaran, Mt Urdaneta in Prov. of Agusan (July-Oct.); Butuan; Isl. of Camiguin (Babuyan Isls): Mambajao (Nov.); Cebu (5 days, on the way back to Manila).-1915. Luzon: Irosin (Mt Bulusan), Sorsogon Prov. (Oct.-Dec.)2 and the same locality from Apr.-Sept. 1916-1917. Mt Maquiling (June-July).-Br. N. Borneo. 1921. In the vicinity of Batu Lima near Sandakan (Oct.-Dec.).-1922. Since Oct. headquarters at Tawao.-1923. At Tawao till March; return for a short period to Manila, then staying at Tawao until Oct.-Philippines.1927. Luzon: Mt Pinatubo in Zambales Mts (May).3



Coll. Philippines4 in Herb. Manila [PNH]: 1120 specim. (1903-04), 3744 specim. (1907-14); Herb. Vienna [W]: ± 3800 phanerog. (purch. 1909-15), also ferns, mosses and hepatics; Herb. Bog. [BO]; Herb. Leiden [L]: 8612 specim. (purch. 1907/33); Herb. Utrecht [U]; Herb. Berl. [B]: 2500 nos (purch. 1924/ 25) + 98 nos (pres. 1908-13); Herb. Deless. (Geneva [G]): 5550 nos (acq. 1908-33), 17 bryophytes (1916-18); Herb. Decand. (Geneva [G]): 5173 nos (acq. 1906-18); Herb. Kew [K]: Philip. pl. (purch. 1906-14, 1920, 1933-34); Herb. Brit. Mus. [BM]: 1857 phanerog. + 738 cryptog. (by exch. & purch. 1910-14); Herb. Stockholm [S]; Herb. Sing. [SING] (dupl. Manila 1908); Herb. Sydney [NSW]: 3134 pl. (purch. 1908-14) + material in exchange, > 1600 (purch. 1922-23); Herb. Field (= Nat. Hist.) Mus. Chicago [F]: 8484 pl. (purch. 1910-15, 1924); Herb. Bot. Gard. St Petersb. (= Leningrad [LE]): 547 species; Gray Herb. [GH]; Herb. N.Y. Bot. Gard. [NY]: 125 specim. of mosses and hepatics (1908-14), 213 Fungi (pres. 1907), 1398 pl. (1907-34); U.S. Nat. Herb. Wash. [US]: 2300 dupl. P.I.; Herb. Univ. Zurich [Z] (8000 nos princ. from America!; P.I. plants too); in Herb. Christensen (= Brit. Mus. [BM]): complete set of ferns from Mt Pinatubo; Herb. Hamb. [HBG]: 1802 nos (purch. 1912-13); Herb. Copenhagen [C]; Herb. Paris [P]; and probably elsewhere. Herb. Edinb. [E]: dupl. Philippines.

The collection of Lamao Forest Reserve amounts to 302 nos.5 The Mt Pinatubo coll. (1927) is numbered 219 . .-above 22000.

Coll. Borneo6 in Herb. Manila [PNH]: 1st and 2nd set including the actual types; Herb. Berkeley (Cal.) [UC]: set of dupl. with isotypes; Herb. Kew [K] (purch. 1927); Herb. Berl. [B]: 1800 nos; Herb. Brit. Mus. [BM]; Leiden [L]: 1823 nos; Utrecht [U]; Herb. Bog. [BO]; Herb. Univ. Zurich [Z]: complete set;7 Herb. N.Y. Bot. Gard. [NY]: 1209 specim. (1931); Herb. Arn. Arbor. [A]: 1085 pl. (1926/27); Herb. Field (= Nat. Hist.) Mus. Chicago [F]: 1460 pl. (purch. 1926); Gray Herb. [GH]; Herb. Stanf. Univers. (Cal.); Carnegie Mus. Pittsburgh [CM]; Miss. Bot. Gard. St Louis [MO]; Bern. P. Bish. Mus. Honolulu [BISH]; Herb. Sydney [NSW]; Herb. Edinb. [E], Munich [M], Hamburg [HBG], Copenhagen [C] (1750), Stockholm [S], Calcutta [CAL], Sing. [SING], Herb. Deless. (Geneva [G]): 269 Borneo pl. (purch. 1922/23) + 1535 (purch. 1926/28); in Herb. Martelli (= Florence [FI]) type specim. Pandanaceae; Herb. Paris [P].

The original field labels are attached to the Manila set, copies to the Univers. Calif. (Berkeley) set. The numbers run as follows: nos 20001-20395 from the vicinity of Batu Lima, near Sandakan; nos 20396-21919 near Tawao.

In 1924 Th.Osw. Weigel offered for sale a collection of 2000 plants from the Philippines and Borneo; probably collection Elmer.



(1) cf. Elmer Leafl. Philip. Bot. 7, 1914, p. 2359-2384.

(2) cf. l.c. 9, 1937, p. 3397-3413.

(3) cf. l.c. 9, 1933, p. 3140-3148.

(4) Many plants described in Elmer, Leaflets Philippine Botany, 1906-37.

(5) cf. Merrill in Philip. Journ. Sci. 1, 1906, Suppl. p. 3.

(6) E.D. Merrill: ‘Plantae Elmerianae Borneenses’ (Univers. Calif. Publ. Bot. 15, 1929, p. 1-316).

(7) cf. Mitt. Bot. Mus. Zürich 1924/25, p. 21, note. Herein stated: ‘A complete series of Sumatra and Borneo’; as Elmer never collected in the former island, we may assume that this is based on an error.

(8) A fairly complete set of some 10.000 handwritten original field notes is among the Reliquiae Bartlettianae at Michigan. (5549-6768 very incomplete, 6917-6961, 7037-18480, 20003-22694), obtained from Elmer’s widow. Merrill made typed copies of the nos 7037-18477, presumably at Berkeley, Harvard, and Kew.


biographical data:

Nat. Research Counc. P.I. Bull. no 7, 1935, p. 805-808, incl. bibliogr.; Backer, Verkl. Woordenb., 1936; Philip. J. Sc. 78, 1949, p. 1-4; In J.H.Thomas, Flora S. Cruz Mts California, 1961, p. 35, photogr. p. 33.