William Ernest Powell Giles

by Anita Silvey

In 1874, the English botanist WEP Giles (William Ernest Powell) explored the vast deserts of central Australia.

Setting out with his hunting partner from a base camp at Fort McKellar, he discovered a leak in one of his large water bags.

The two men decided to continue, even though the temperature had already climbed to 96 degrees Fahrenheit.

Camping that night, they hung their remaining bags of water in a tree to protect them.

But one of their horses attacked a bag with her teeth— spraying the water all over the ground. Now neither the men nor the animals had enough water.
— Anita Silvey, American children’s author, The Plant Hunters, Bringing Themselves Home Alive

As featured on
The Daily Gardener podcast:

Words inspired by the garden are the sweetest, most beautiful words of all.
William Ernest Powell Giles

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