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1 Hawthorne Botany- General

Wicked Plants: A Book of Botanical Atrocities

by

Wicked Plants: A Book of Botanical Atrocities Cover

 

Staff Pick

It's not easy being green. Mostly, everything else eats you. But some plants fight back with thorns and poisons. Some plants are: Wicked Plants by Amy Stewart.
Recommended by Kathy H, Powell's Books at PDX

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A tree that sheds poison daggers; a glistening red seed that stops the heart; a shrub that causes paralysis; a vine that strangles; and a leaf that triggered a war. In Wicked Plants, Stewart takes on over two hundred of Mother Nature's most appalling creations. It's an A to Z of plants that kill, maim, intoxicate, and otherwise offend. You'll learn which plants to avoid (like exploding shrubs), which plants make themselves exceedingly unwelcome (like the vine that ate the South), and which ones have been killing for centuries (like the weed that killed Abraham Lincoln's mother).

Menacing botanical illustrations and splendidly ghastly drawings create a fascinating portrait of the evildoers that may be lurking in your own backyard. Drawing on history, medicine, science, and legend, this compendium of bloodcurdling botany will entertain, alarm, and enlighten even the most intrepid gardeners and nature lovers.

Synopsis:

Stewart takes on more than 200 of Mother Nature's most appalling creations and offers this A-to-Z compendium of plants that kill, maim, intoxicate, and otherwise offend.

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About the Author

Amy Stewart is the author of The Earth Moved, which won the 2005 California Horticultural Society's Writer's Award, and From the Ground Up. Her essays and commentaries have appeared in the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Garden Design, Organic Gardening, and elsewhere. She has been featured on NPR, Good Morning America, and CBS Sunday Morning. She lectures throughout the country and lives in Eureka, California. Author Web site: www.amystewart.com

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

LyndaT, September 16, 2009 (view all comments by LyndaT)
This book is not only an entertaining read and resource book for gardeners and lovers of exotic plants. It's also a great help for writers of murder mysteries in search of a new and interesting way to kill off their characters. (Maybe someone will start a series of whodunnits that take place in a greenhouse!)

The author, Amy Stewart, has obviously done a great deal of research to find the most interesting true stories of plants that kill, maim, and just plain make us itch.

There's even something for those people who might not care to read the warnings of what that innocent looking plant in your garden might really be -- the illustrations, copper etchings by Briony Morrow-Cribbs are lushiously detailed.

Unfortunately, the smaller cartoonish drawings by Jonathon Rosen, which might have been cute and entertaining in another book, are overshadowed here, looking a little like a dandelion gone to seed placed next to a rose.

I only wish this book was longer!
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Denise Morland, June 21, 2009 (view all comments by Denise Morland)
Amy Stewart documents the bad behavior of naughty botanicals in her “Wicked Plants”. This bad behavior ranges in classification from Painful, Illegal, Dangerous and Intoxicating to Deadly. Some will not surprise you, most people know that poison ivy causes a rash, that smoking tobacco can kill you, and that nettles sting. However, did you know that raw cashews can cause the same symptoms as poison ivy? Or that Water Hemlock, one of the most dangerous plants in the US , looks just like a carrot and has a pleasant, sweet taste? This little book is packed full of useful information, fun facts, and interesting historical details. I was fascinated to learn that the Salem Witch Trials were almost certainly caused by a fungus and that Socrates died from drinking a tea made from Poison Hemlock.
The book is beautifully put together. It features 40 intricate and detailed illustrations of plants. A second artist created gruesome and hysterical cartoons showing the consequences of relations with the various naughty plants in the book. Catchy chapter headings like “More Than One Way to Skin a Cat”, concise entries, and fascinating anecdotes make this a fun, easy read. I highly recommend this book for gardeners and nature enthusiasts!
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781565126831
Author:
Stewart, Amy
Publisher:
Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
Illustrator:
Morrow-Cribbs, Briony
Illustrator:
Rosen, Jonathan
Author:
Morrow-Cribbs, Briony
Author:
Rosen, Jonathon
Subject:
Plants - General
Subject:
Reference
Subject:
Plants
Subject:
GARDENING / Reference
Subject:
Poisonous plants
Subject:
Dangerous plants.
Subject:
Life Sciences - Botany
Subject:
Nature Studies-Botany
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardback
Publication Date:
20090531
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
7 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » General
Home and Garden » Gardening » History and Theory
Home and Garden » Gardening » Writing
Science and Mathematics » Botany » General
Science and Mathematics » Botany » Poisonous Plants
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Botany
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General

Wicked Plants: A Book of Botanical Atrocities Used Hardcover
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Product details 256 pages Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill - English 9781565126831 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

It's not easy being green. Mostly, everything else eats you. But some plants fight back with thorns and poisons. Some plants are: Wicked Plants by Amy Stewart.

"Synopsis" by , Stewart takes on more than 200 of Mother Nature's most appalling creations and offers this A-to-Z compendium of plants that kill, maim, intoxicate, and otherwise offend.
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