Hidden natural histories Trees : the secret properties of 150 species Trees :

Noël Kingsbury

Book - 2015

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Hidden natural histories.
Chicago : The University of Chicago Press 2015.
Item Description
Includes index.
Physical Description
224 pages : color illustrations ; 21 cm
Main Author
Noël Kingsbury (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Hidden Natural Histories: Herbs and Hidden Natural Histories: Trees are two wonderful examples of guides that are both accessible and interesting to the layman and expert alike. Both volumes are extremely user-friendly and visually pleasing, with beautifully detailed illustrations of more than 150 different species of trees and herbs. They contain a variety of information, ranging from botanical descriptions to ethnobotanical lore, including such things as the medicinal, culinary, and spiritual uses of the plants. Detailed germination and growing conditions for each plant are also included. As an added bonus, relevant literary or historical quotes are included for many of the plants described. In Trees, Kingsbury also includes average heights and typical crown shapes for each of the trees he describes, which is a unique feature of this guide. Both volumes are extremely well organized, and both include an introduction, a brief description about how to use the book, glossaries, a catalog of plants, and an index. Most readers will find these volumes to be informative and eye-opening. They are highly recommended for both public and academic libraries. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Explores the traditional significance of trees and the use of various species in industry, medicine, farming, craft, and other fields, while tracing man's interaction with and dependence on trees throughout history.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Civilization has long been rooted in trees. They have warmed hearths, framed boats for ocean voyaging and poles for fishing those waters, hardwoods have provided shelters, and the strength of weapons in warfare. Oaks were worshipped by Druids, redwoods were a critical part of Native American ritual, as baobabs are to African tribal life and the ginkgo is to Chinese myth. And yet in spite of, or because of, the strength and fortitude of trees, virgin forests the world over have been cleared for human consumption.In the wake of such change, in the spirited growth of heritage tree appreciation the world over,Hidden Natural Histories: Trees explains the traditional significance of 100 trees and describes their natural, culinary, medicinal, cosmetic, magical, and other properties. A combination of archival and original illustrations show tree forms and characters, and make for an easy navigation. One can either enjoy the whole forest with the trees, or tour the book one sentinel redwood at a time.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Behind the cedar scent of fresh pencil shavings and the slightly bitter tang of orange in our marmalade are untold stories of human interactions with the natural world. Celebrating the human heritage of these and other natural phenomena, the new Hidden Natural Histories series offers fascinating insight into the cultivation and use of the bits of nature we take for granted in our daily lives. In Trees, noted garden writer Noel Kingsbury turns his pen&;or pencil&;to the leafy life-forms that have warmed our hearths, framed our boats for ocean voyaging, and provided us shade on summer afternoons. From the fortitude of the ancient ginkgo tree to artistic depictions of quince fruit in the ruins of Pompeii, Kingsbury explores the culinary, medicinal, cultural, and practical uses of a forest of tree species. Packed with informative and beautiful illustrations&;both new and from historical archives&;Trees will charm and enlighten anyone interested in our relationship with the natural world and will be a special delight for every gardener, chef, and climber of trees.