: Flora mirabilis: an illustrated time line of botanical exploration, discovery, and delight (9781426205095) : Catherine H. Howell : Books
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Flora Mirabilis: An Illustrated Time Line Of Botanical Exploration, Discovery, And Delight

by Catherine H. Howell
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Product Details

  • Publisher: National Geographic
  • Publishing date: 20/10/2009
  • Language: Français
  • ISBN-13: 9781426205095
  • ISBN: 1426205090


Book Description
Flora Mirabilis
is a sumptuously designed showcase of superb illustrations paired with fascinating stories of botanical exploration and trade through the ages. A collaboration between National Geographic and the world-renowned Missouri Botanical Garden, this book will prove an evergreen source of delight, not just for gardeners and flower aficionados, but for anyone interested in the plant world, human civilization, and their intertwined histories.

From prehistory to the present day, Flora Mirabilis blossoms with legend and lore as it culls the most engrossing mysteries and adventures of plant exploration, science, and discovery and garlands them with astonishingly beautiful illustrations. These lavish pages are abloom with the rich details and engaging allure of beloved flowers, stunning gardens, ancient trees, medicinal herbs, and valuable plants of all varieties from around the world. Unique "plant profiles" chronicle the especially remarkable roles each plant has played in matters of economics, politics, and taste.

Illustrated throughout with never-before-published collector’s edition reproductions and introduced with an eloquent foreword by Peter H. Raven, president of the Missouri Botanical Garden, this stunning volume will catch eyes and flower in imaginations everywhere.
The Top 10 Plants That Shaped the World

Click on thumbnails for larger images

Black pepper
Demand for this flavoring set in motion the great voyages of discovery.
Its sweetness begat a shameful trade in human beings and the plantation system of agriculture.
A New World cultivar--maize--took over the planet and is now an all-too-common ingredient in human and animal food products.
Its special properties forever changed the face of transportation, industry, and everyday life (even though synthetics are now in wide use).
Native to both Asia and the Americas, its seedpods yield a fiber that has clothed the entire world.

Opium poppy
Benefit and bane derive from its flowers, source of both morphine and heroin.
Once regarded as a medical panacea, tobacco's highly addictive chemicals have hooked hundreds of millions over the centuries.
This versatile and nutritious food plant originated in the Americas but beguiled the Irish; widespread blight led to mass starvation and flight—and emigration to America.
Roasted beans yield a beverage long at the center of urban social life, from the London coffeehouses of the 18th century, to the Parisian cafés of the 20th, to the Starbucks craze of the 21st.
Source of chocolate, from genus Theobroma, "food of the gods"--need we say more?

(Illustrations courtesy of the Missouri Botanical Garden Library)

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  • Perfect for both specialty botany libraries and general lending collections
    From Amazon

    FLORA MIRABILIS: HOW PLANTS HAVE SHAPED WORLD KNOWLEDGE, HEALTH, WEALTH AND BEAUTY offers gorgeous illustrations paired with stories of botanical exploration and trade through the ages. It's a fine survey illustrated with unique collector's edition reproductions and offers a host of botanical designs and explorations perfect for both specialty botany libraries and general lending collections alike.

  • Beautifully designed book
    From Amazon

    Roughly translated, Flora Mirabilis means "a wonderful book of flowers" and National Geographic certainly doesn't disappoint with this beautifully designed and illustrated history of how plants have influenced our lives. The publishers have collaborated with the Missouri Botanical Garden Library to reproduce over 200 rare botanical prints and woodcuts, beautifully illustrated on heavy gloss paper. The narrative recounts the trecherous adventures of early plant hunters who sought plants from far reaches across the globe to modern-day scientists who use plants for molecular biology, genetics and biochemistry. Sprinkled throughout the book are illustrated time-lines and individual profiles of significant plants in botanical history like wheat, rice, olive, tulip, tobacco, coffee, tomato, rose, grape, cotton, apple, potato, orchids and more. Another reviewer noted that the chapters trail off in mid-sentence. Actually they continue after the one-page segments on individual plants. This is somewhat distracting but otherwise this is a beautifully designed book and full of fascinating information.

  • tried to do too much
    From Amazon

    as you can imagine this is one enormous subject to cover in one book. too bad some very interesting people and events were give such short mention. the reviews of individual plants made the book worthwhile. the print was awful small and difficult to read after a long day. worth the price.

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