I note with sadness the death of Dr Ted Bollard FRSNZ CBE at the age of 91. Ted was one of the giants of our small science system. He was one of the key figures in building New Zealand’s science prowess in the 1970s and 1980s, being director of the DSIR’s Division of Horticulture during that period as well as President of the Royal Society. It was a time when our under-spend on science relative to other countries started to become apparent. Ted argued for the essential value of science for New Zealand’s development. Indeed his research in plant science has had a major legacy, particularly within our horticultural sector. I personally experienced Ted’s great enthusiasm for young scientists, even in areas of science well remote from his.