"The greatest pleasure of naturalists (understated by certain utilitarians) is to discover new species, to point to new islands on the map of nature, and to populate continents that seem to be deserts" -- Richard Spruce, 1851
This splendid book traces the journeys of more than 80 pioneering botanists who explored the unknown world and collected thousands of unusual plants. Many were celebrated at home in Europe and England. Others were working in obscurity to fulfill their own desires and obsessions.
But every one of these explorers made important finds, collecting and preserving unique and valuable plants and often establishing them in cultivation back in their home lands.
Each spread in the book describes the journey and the naturalist, with a map tracing the routes taken, on the left. Facing is the actual plant collected, complete with notes, seeds, pollen, and identifying documents, often in the botanist's own hand.
The stories are packed with detail, describing the theories of the day, the difficulty of raising money, and traversing jungles and forests. But each is colored by the excitement of discovering orchids, trees, teas, flowering roses and acanthus, ferns, strange bulbs, and mountain flowers.
The design is accompanied by 80 maps, 150 photographs, drawings and engravings. All work to reproduce the spirit of the quest and the discovery of plants.
No other group of plants in North America can equal Phlox for its preeminence in the wild and in the garden. Its sixty-one species appear in (and sometimes define) plant communities up and down the continent. And no American genus has enjoyed a richer history in the world's gardens.
But until now, there has been no comprehensive horticultural account of the genus. In Phlox, plant expert James H. Locklear provides detailed profiles of all the currently recognized species of Phlox. Each contains general and botanical descriptions, geographic range, a description of its environment, associations with other plants, and notes on cultivation.
This landmark of horticultural literature will be the definitive reference for years to come for Phlox enthusiasts, native plant aficionados, rock gardeners, and those with an interest in the natural history of North American flora.
"If we cannot name and recognize plants, how can we value them and realize how essential they are to our environment and our well-being as humans?" --from the Introduction
In 2012 a committee of experts chose the ten plants that most changed Minnesota from nearly five hundred citizen nominations, hosted by the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. The idea that plants, as few as ten, could shape a state and how it developed economically, culturally, and historically, is at the core of the Ten Plants that Changed Minnesota project, which also includes a companion website and a popular freshman seminar at the University of Minnesota. With careful review by more than thirty experts and scientists and with research drawn from newspaper and journal reports, historical photos, diaries, and interviews, Mary Hockenberry Meyer and Susan Davis Price highlight the importance of the selected plants and their impact--both positive and negative--in the development and future of our state. The plants are the apple, alfalfa, the American elm, corn, lawn or turfgrass, purple loosestrife, soybeans, wheat, wild rice, and white pine.
This handbook for gardening in small spaces is one of the lead titles in a new series of gardening books published in partnership with Horticulture, America's most respected gardening magazine.
A centuries-old saying goes, "Great oaks from little acorns grow." But as this dazzling book reveals, there is much more to a seed than the plant it will someday become: seeds, seedheads, pods, and fruits have their own astounding beauty that rivals, and sometimes even surpasses, the beauty of flowers. Bitter melon seeds resemble a handful of rubies. Poppy pods could be art nouveau salt shakers. And butterfly vine seeds look exactly like those delicate insects captured in mid-flight.
Seeds also come with fascinating stories. Jewels of Opar got its name from a fabled city in Edgar Rice Burroughs's Tarzan stories. Lotus seeds sent into orbit by Chinese scientists came back to earth mysteriously altered. And fava beans--beloved of foodies--have a Jekyll-and-Hyde personality: they can cause the debilitating condition known as favism in some individuals and at the same time combat the microorganism that causes malaria.
In these stunning pages you'll gain an understanding of how seeds are formed and dispersed, why they look the way they do, and how they fit into the environment. Seeing Seeds will take you to strange and wonderful places. When you return, it's safe to say that you'll never look at a seed the same way again.
How to use and maintain a wide range of plants in and around your garden pond, including water lilies, aquatics, marginals, and bog plants. The garden industry is booming, and this exceptionally illustrated full-color book is the perfect resource for budding or experienced pondscapers.
This book features all the popular types of pond plants. Specially commissioned step-by-step photos show planting techniques and maintenance, propagation, plus how to recognize and treat common plant pests and diseases.
The Cabaret of Plants is a masterful, globe-trotting exploration of the relationship between humans and the kingdom of plants by the renowned naturalist Richard Mabey.
A rich, sweeping, and wonderfully readable work of botanical history, The Cabaret of Plants explores dozens of plant species that for millennia have challenged our imaginations, awoken our wonder, and upturned our ideas about history, science, beauty, and belief. Going back to the beginnings of human history, Mabey shows how flowers, trees, and plants have been central to human experience not just as sources of food and medicine but as objects of worship, actors in creation myths, and symbols of war and peace, life and death.
Writing in a celebrated style that the Economist calls "delightful and casually learned," Mabey takes readers from the Himalayas to Madagascar to the Amazon to our own backyards. He ranges through the work of writers, artists, and scientists such as da Vinci, Keats, Darwin, and van Gogh and across nearly 40,000 years of human history: Ice Age images of plant life in ancient cave art and the earliest representations of the Garden of Eden; Newton's apple and gravity, Priestley's sprig of mint and photosynthesis, and Wordsworth's daffodils; the history of cultivated plants such as maize, ginseng, and cotton; and the ways the sturdy oak became the symbol of British nationhood and the giant sequoia came to epitomize the spirit of America.
Complemented by dozens of full-color illustrations, The Cabaret of Plants is the magnum opus of a great naturalist and an extraordinary exploration of the deeply interwined history of humans and the natural world.
Filled with color photographs and essential information for growing all types of bulbs suitable for the prairie garden, Best Bulbs for the Prairies is an excellent resource and an inspiration for gardeners of all interests and skill levels.
Features details on bulb selection and planting, spring, summer, and fall-blooming bulbs, growth cycles, landscaping with bulbs, naturalizing, container gardening, fertilizing, charts, illustrations, and more.
A major figure in the development of garden design, Gertrude Jekyll (1843-1932) did not set out to make gardening her career. In her late teens she had enrolled as a student at the Kensington School of Art, a bold step for a young lady in mid Victorian times. Her deteriorating eyesight compelled her to abandon almost entirely her favourite occupations of painting and embroidery. She had always loved flowers, and friendship with gardening neighbours had encouraged her interest. A meeting with the young architect, Edwin Lutyens, led to his designing a house for her at Munstead Wood near Godalming in Surrey, and to a fruitful partnership in which Miss Jekyll planned the gardens of houses built by Lutyens. Her great contribution to horticulture was that she translated gardening into terms of painting in her use of colour and of light and shade. She brought to garden design an artist's good taste, a knowledge of rural tradition and a respect for craftsmanship, especially the architect's craft, which so marks her work with Lutyens.
About the author
Betty Massingham, a horticultural researcher and journalist, was the author of a full-length biography of Gertude Jekyll.