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The Color Encyclopedia of Cape Bulbs
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The Color Encyclopedia of Cape Bulbs

by John C. Manning, Peter Goldblatt, Dee Snijman
 

The Cape Region, at the southern tip of Africa, is easily among the richest centers for bulbous plants and probably the most famous. Nearly 1200 species of bulbous plants find their home there and almost three-quarters of them occur nowhere else. This first complete account of all the bulbous plants of the Cape Floral Region is an essential aid to the

Overview

The Cape Region, at the southern tip of Africa, is easily among the richest centers for bulbous plants and probably the most famous. Nearly 1200 species of bulbous plants find their home there and almost three-quarters of them occur nowhere else. This first complete account of all the bulbous plants of the Cape Floral Region is an essential aid to the identification of all species presently in cultivation as well as the many others that are potentially valuable horticultural subjects. The book is richly illustrated with high-quality color photographs of more than half the species of Cape bulbs, many of which have never been illustrated before.

Editorial Reviews

Pacific Horticulture
"The horticultural world owes the authors — and the publishers — a great debt of gratitude for this exceptional work."—Pacific Horticulture, Spring 2003
Plant Science Bulletin
"Just before leaving for South Africa, I asked a botanist there if I should bring this book. Too late. He considered this such an important volume that he had purchased his copy as soon as it was published. After seeing the book I understood why. It is the definitive volume for anyone interested in this incredibly diverse group of South African geophytes."—Lytton John Musselman, Plant Science Bulletin, Spring 2004
— Lytton John Musselman
Plant Systematics and Evolution
"The authors have largely succeeded in making accessible this rich flora to the interested horticulturalist in terms that are not too complex or techinical. Highly recommended."—Paul I. Forster, Plant Systematics and Evolution, November 2003
— Paul I. Forster
Plant Science Bulletin - Lytton John Musselman
"Just before leaving for South Africa, I asked a botanist there if I should bring this book. Too late. He considered this such an important volume that he had purchased his copy as soon as it was published. After seeing the book I understood why. It is the definitive volume for anyone interested in this incredibly diverse group of South African geophytes."—Lytton John Musselman, Plant Science Bulletin, Spring 2004
Plant Systematics and Evolution - Paul I. Forster
"The authors have largely succeeded in making accessible this rich flora to the interested horticulturalist in terms that are not too complex or techinical. Highly recommended."—Paul I. Forster, Plant Systematics and Evolution, November 2003
From the Publisher
“The horticultural world owes the authors—and the publishers—a great debt of gratitude for this exceptional work.” —Pacific Horticulture
 
“Definitely a reference book for bulb enthusiasts, we strongly recommend it if you are interested in the subject.” —Bloomings Books

“This is an excellent book for any botanical, horticultural or gardening collection.” —E-Streams

“These pictures are superbly printed, beautifully sharp and with very good colour, so this book is a real treat for the botanist or gardener who is keen on bulbs.” —NYBG's Plant Talk

“While aiming for comprehensiveness for botanists, the volume is also a breathtaking guide for travelers and a lavishly illustrated source of inspriation for gardeners.” —SciTech Book News

“A rigorous, comprehensible treatment of the subject and the only book of its kind. It also is a very beautiful book.” —Pappus

“This larege, handsome volume documents for the first time the amazing variety of species bulbs found in the Cape region of South Africa. . . . They are offered alphabetically by genus, making it a user-friendly text for beginner and old-hand alike.” —University of California at Santa Cruz Arboretum Bulletin

“The first guide to the nearly 600 species of bulbs from the southern tip of Africa, many of which are beginning to bring unusual beauty to outdoor and indoor gardens in America.” —Avant Gardener

“I can not think of any other trio of botanists whose combined knowledge of the subject would be greater. Each of them is an expert in their field, and they all write so very well. . . . With over 600 wonderful color photographs, this book is not only a great reference work, but also an inspiration for all who love bulbs and plants in general to visit this enchanting part of the world.” —Gardening Newsletter
 
“This book will delight those interested in botanical distinctions.” —California Garden
 
“This book is a glorious work, with stunning photos mostly of the plants growing in habitat.” —Let’s Talk Plants

“This book is a marvelous contribution by three of theh world’s best known botanists. I can confidently predict that it will increase in value with time and will be an asset to libraries and book collectors alike. All bulb enthusiasts should own a copy of this magnificent volume.” —South African Journal of Botany

 

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780881925470
Publisher:
Timber Press, Incorporated
Publication date:
12/31/2002
Pages:
486
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 11.25(h) x 1.38(d)

Related Subjects

Read an Excerpt

The Cape Floral Region is a botanical anomaly. Not only does it have more plant species than would be anticipated given its latitude and climate, it is also home to far more bulbous plants than anywhere else in the world. Its flora is in fact so singular in many respects that the region is classified as one of the world's six floral kingdoms. This is truly remarkable given the unusually small area occupied by the Cape Floral Region, only 0.04% of the earth's land surface. The other floral kingdoms, in comparison, occupy all or most of one or more continents.

Elsewhere in the world the number of plant species per unit area increases form temperate to tropical latitudes and from arid or semiarid habitats to well-watered ones. The Cape Floral Region defies these trends. Although it lies well within the temperate zone and most of it experiences a semiarid climate of low annual rainfall and summer drought, it is nevertheless home to about 9000 plant species in an area of only 90,000 square kilometers (35,000 square miles). This is more species than the species-rich, wet tropics of Panama, which covers a comparable area, and only slightly fewer than in Costa Rica, another tropical area of comparable size. Comparisons between the floras of regions with a Mediterranean climate, which characterizes much of the Cape Floral Region, only emphasize the remarkable richness of the Cape flora. California, for instance, which is recognized as having a rich and diverse flora, actually only supports about 5000 species (just over half the number found in the Cape flora) in an area more than three times larger than the Cape Floral Region. Another peculiarity of the Cape flora is its remarkably high level of endemism. Almost 70% of the species in the Cape flora are found nowhere else on earth. This level of endemism is characteristic of isolated oceanic islands and is unique for a continental flora.

Meet the Author

Peter Goldblatt is the B.A. Krukoff Curator of African Botany at the Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis. Throughout his botanical career he has concentrated his attention on the Iridaceae and has shown particular interest in its African members.

John Manning was born in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, and has been a research scientist in the Compton Herbarium at the National Botanical Institute, South Africa, since 1989. He works at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Cape Town, one of the world's great botanical gardens and an important center for research on the African flora. Although he has studied the anatomy, embryology and seed development of plants in diverse families, including the Fabaceae, Proteaceae and Stilbaceae, he has focused his research more recently on the Iridaceae, collaborating on various research projects with Peter Goldblatt. Together they have investigated the evolution and pollination biology of the African genus Lapeirousia and the systematics, pollination systems and evolution of Gladiolus in southern Africa. John and Peter have coauthored several books, including Gladiolus in Southern Africa and various wildflower guides to the southern African flora, the most recent of which was Wildflowers of the Fairest Cape (Redroof Design and Timber Press, 2000). John is also an accomplished botanical artist and photographer; his drawings have been published in numerous books and scientific journals.

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