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Plant Form: An Illustrated Guide to Flowering Plant Morphologyby Adrian D Bell
Synopses & Reviews
The diverse external shapes and structures that make up flowering plants can be bewildering and even daunting, as can the terminology used to describe them. An understanding of plant form-plant morphology-is essential to appreciating the wonders of the plant world and to the study of botany and horticulture at every level. In this ingeniously designed volume, the complex subject becomes both accessible and manageable. The first part of the book describes and clearly illustrates the major plant structures that can be seen with the naked eye or a hand lens: leaf, root, stem, reproductive organs, and seedlings; special sections focus on vegetative propagation, and the morphology of grasses, orchids, and cacti. However, plants are dynamic organisms, constantly growing, changing, and becoming more elaborate, and understanding the development of a plant or plant part is as important as describing its final form. Part II focuses on how plants grow: bud development, the growth of reproductive organs, leaf arrangement, branching patterns, and the accumulation and loss of structures. This classic book, now revised and expanded to include the latest information on plant morphology, more than 1000 exquisite line drawings including 119 that are new to this edition, and nearly twice as many photographs as the previous edition, is remarkable for its user-friendly organization, high-quality illustrations, and extensive cross-referencing. Aimed at students of botany and horticulture, enthusiastic gardeners and amateur naturalists, it functions as an illustrated dictionary, a basic course in plant morphology, and an intriguing and enlightening book to dip into.
Book News Annotation:
Bell (biological science, Bangor U., etc.) and illustrator Bryan include over 1,000 beautiful line drawings and color photographs (works of art in themselves) to fully describe a wide range of plants. Fully updated from the 1991 edition, this covers principles of morphological description followed by the morphology of leaves, roots, stems, reproductive organs, and seedlings, with sections on vegetative multiplication, orchid morphology, and misfits such as Gesneriaceae. Bell then takes up the issue of constructional organization, explaining meristem position and potential, time of meristem activity, meristem disruption, and plant branch construction. This is a professional reference accessible enough for laymen's use, and better-looking than many purely pictorial efforts we've seen. Annotation ©2008 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
This classic book--now revised and expanded to include the latest information on plant morphology, more than 1,000 line drawings, and nearly twice as many photographs--is remarkable for its user-friendly organization, high-quality illustrations, and extensive cross-referencing.
This profusely illustrated book provides comprehensive coverage of the immense variation in the external structure of flowering plants. It defines the innumerable details of growing and mature plants, describing their leaves, flowers, roots and seeds in a manner that will enable professionals
and amateurs alike to identify many difficult features. The book also explains much of the terminology that is used in advanced botanical texts and reference books, but rarely explained for novices. The unique and extensive collection of color photographs and stunning original line drawings add to
the fascination of this useful work. By focusing on morphological features, which are often passed over in anatomically-oriented texts, this volume will be a valuable resource for all students and professionals in botany, horticulture, and forestry, as well as anyone interested in the amazing
variety of plant forms.
About the Author
Adrian D. Bell, Ph.D, is a Fellow of the Linnean Society of London. He has devoted his career to studying, teaching, and writing about plant morphology, serving as Senior Lecturer in the Schools of Plant Biology and Biological Sciences at the University of Wales and as Cabot Fellow at Harvard University.
Alan Bryan studied with Adrian Bell at Bangor University, graduating with honors in Botany. A keen gardener with a lifelong interest in plants, he subsequently trained as a nurse but remains a botanist and illustrator at heart.
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