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David Griffiths (1867 – 1935) was an American explorer, botanist, mycologist, and taxonomist.
Born in Wales, he emigrated to the USA. UU with his family when he was three years old and grew up on a farm in South Dakota. After graduating from the South Dakota Agricultural College in 1892, and his master’s degree in 1893, he taught science at the local middle school in Aberdeen for five years until he enrolled as a PhD student at Columbia University in 1898. His research At that time he focused on the study of fungi and gave rise to numerous articles published on powdery mildew, coals, and others in the Bulletin Asa Gray, Torrey Botanical Club Bulletin and elsewhere.
In 1900, he received his Ph.D. by Columbia University. And appointed professor of botany and botanist at the Experimental Station of the University of Arizona and there he began his studies on agrostology and other plants. The following year he joined the Bureau of Plant Industry of the United States Department of Agriculture and for the next fifteen years worked as an agrostologist in the Bureau of Herbal and Fodder Research. Thus he made extensive collections of native grasses, shrubs, and cacti from the USA. UU and northern Mexico.
Griffiths became interested in the use of cactus and other xerophilous plants in the southwest as food for emergency livestock in times of drought. He was also impressed by its economic importance as ornamental plants and assembled a complete collection of species and varieties in the Introduction of Garden Plants in Chico, California, including 3,500 specimens of Opuntia. His last twenty years were devoted to the study of bulbous plants.
As a major horticulturist in production projects, he earned a reputation as a specialist in the cultivation of imported and native bulbs. His cactus collection was donated to the National Museum of the United States in 1935.
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