35 years on, ebony hero Charlie gets his name on the map

A strong wind blew over the party that had gathered above St Helena’s wildest cliffs to honour Charlie Benjamin as an island hero. And nearly 5,000 miles away in London, a heavy drizzle blattered against the windows of the elegant room at Kew Gardens where his daughter was getting married. Speeches at both locations recalled […]

Bride Wendy has her flower on her cake – and eats it

The St Helena ebony, rescued from extinction by Charlie Benjamin, has found a place in UK national ceremonial – and on his daughter’s wedding cake. Simon Pipe of St Helena Online was honoured to give a speech telling Charlie’s story. Wendy Benjamin would have liked to have living ebony flowers at her wedding to Campbell Duncan. But […]

Expert backs call to honour Charlie, a ‘conservation hero’

The idea of putting celebrating Charlie Benjamin as a hero of St Helena conservation has gone down well with plant expert Dr Colin Clubbe. He used the Twitter messaging website to support the idea of putting Charlie’s name on the map to honour his bravery in retreiving a plant that turned out to be the long-lost […]

Kew man keeps hope alive for extinct St Helena Olive

Plant experts still hope to rediscover the St Helena Olive, the unique island tree that was declared lost in 2003 – for a second time. The stubby tree was presumed extinct until island naturalist George Benjamin discovered a single specimen in 1977. That one wild tree died in 1994, and the species became extinct when cultivated […]

Island ensures memories of the fallen live forever

A cutting from one of St Helena’s endemic plants formed part of a wreath that stood out among the hundreds laid at the base of The Cenotaph in London on Remembrance Sunday, 2012. Old Man Live Forever was one of the plants used in the wreath laid by Foreign Secretary William Hague, in honour of those from […]

Kew advises “little and often” regime to protect ancient trees

Care of historic trees on St Helena has been improved on advice from experts at Kew Gardens in London, says the island government. Concern was raised about a 200-year-old tree in Jamestown after the Agriculture and Natural Resources Directorate gave a routine warning that it might need to be cut down during maintenance work. St Helena Government says guidance has […]