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Arboretum America: A Philosophy of the Forest
     

Arboretum America: A Philosophy of the Forest

by Diana Beresford-Kroeger
 

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Arboretum America is, at the very least, the Bible of Trees. But its ambitions are grander than that. Author Diana Beresford-Kroeger, a self-described "renegade scientist," aims for no less than the salvation of the planet-through the miracle of trees.

There are many books on both subjects. Some warn, some inform, while others meditate on the disappearance of

Overview

Arboretum America is, at the very least, the Bible of Trees. But its ambitions are grander than that. Author Diana Beresford-Kroeger, a self-described "renegade scientist," aims for no less than the salvation of the planet-through the miracle of trees.

There are many books on both subjects. Some warn, some inform, while others meditate on the disappearance of the forests or the meaning of trees. Few books, though, touch on all of these subjects as Arboretum America does.

Beresford's remedy, what she calls the Bioplan, commences with a simple directive: know thy trees. Most important, this revolution must start, not with governments and sweeping legislation, but with "ordinary people with acorn and a shovel."

As E.O. Wilson writes in his foreword to Arboretum America, Beresford-Kroeger is a poet and naturalist by calling, "both druidical and scientific in literary expression." So, too, is her Bioplan, which in spirit and letter covers all aspects of trees, from their history and design and horticultural considerations, and the magic spell they cast over us. Arboretum America is, essentially, a holistic approach to trees, and it suggests that trees, if properly understood and planted, will someday restore the forest primeval.

About the Author:

Diana Beresford-Kroeger is a botanist, medical and agricultural researcher, lecturer, and self-defined "renegade scientist" in the fields of classical botany, medical biochemistry, organic chemistry, and nuclear chemistry. She lives in Ontario, Canada.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In her short introduction, botanist Beresford-Kroeger writes that the great forests of North America have suffered terribly during the past century and that "to survive as a species ourselves" we must restore their original diversity. As a step in that direction, she describes 20 common trees that serve many functions in a forest ecosystem, e.g., black walnut, catalpa, sassafras, maple, and cedar. For each tree, she first discusses its history, especially its use by the aboriginal peoples of North America, followed by how to propagate the tree and provide the optimal environmental conditions for its growth. The following sections focus on the tree's medicinal uses, its ecological function as food and shelter for wildlife, and the ways in which it can be planted for therapeutic, aesthetic, and commercial value. There is a cornucopia of interesting, factual information here, some of it quite technical. An abundance of color photographs by Christian H. Kroeger enhance the text, which includes a foreword by Edward O. Wilson. Recommended for public and academic libraries, particularly for collections specializing in horticulture, forestry, and natural resources.-Ilse Heidmann, Washington State Lib., Olympia Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780472098514
Publisher:
University of Michigan Press/Regional
Publication date:
11/10/2003
Pages:
214
Product dimensions:
9.64(w) x 8.18(h) x 1.01(d)

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