Submitted by gsparrow on
Sue Milliken

OUR TRAVEL COMPANIONS on our 2012 trip to Guizhou and beyond were our close friends Steve Hootman, Director and Curator of the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden (RSBG) and an amazing plantsman beyond his beloved ericaceae, and Tom Hudson, owner and keeper of one of the world’s great collections of rare trees and woody plants at Tregrehan Garden in Cornwall, England. The previous day we had explored Leigong Shan, the highest of the Miaoling Mountains in Guizhou, which we had also visited almost exactly two years earlier in October of 2010. The previous spring, on an RSBG tour, Steve had met various officials, including a highly connected young woman who promised the desired permits to explore “good” forest in nearby Leigongping.