Why Look at Plants? proposes a thought-provoking look into the emerging cultural politics of plant-presence in contemporary art through the original contributions of artists, scholars, and curators who have creatively engaged with the ultimate otherness of plants in their work.
Ground-breaking scientific research and new philosophical perspectives currently challenge our anthropocentric cultural assumptions of the vegetal world. As humanity begins to grapple with the urgency imposed by climate change, reconsidering human/plant relationships becomes essential to grant a sustainable future on this planet. It is in this context that a multifaceted approach to plant-life can reveal the importance of ecological interconnectedness and lead to a more nuanced consideration of the variety of living organisms and ecosystems with which we share the planet. In Botanical Speculations, researchers, artists, art historians, and activists collaboratively map the uncharted territories of new forms of botanical knowledge. This book emerges from a symposium held at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in September 2017, and capitalizes on contemporary art’s ability to productively unhinge scientific theories and certainties in order to help us reconsider unquestioned beliefs about this living world.
Giselle is a cultured ballet student, the daughter of the famous ballerina Marina Parke-Vanova and the late dance historian Grigori Vanov. On her first-ever trip to "Westchest-ah", as her mother's deranged boyfriend Blitz calls it, she meets the most beautiful boy she's ever seen. Will introduces Giselle to the world beyond Manhattan, and for the first time, makes her feel comfortable outside her perfectly protected apartment on Central Park West. But Giselle has some issues to overcome--and some memories about her father that keep rising to the surface. With Will's help, Giselle must come to terms with her family's glorious--and not so glorious--past and focus on the future.
Juvenile Nonfiction by Britannica Educational Publishing
For many of us, plants herald the change of seasons, represent the promise of nourishment, or serve as stunning visual reminders of Earths natural beauty. As vital components of nearly every ecosystem on the planet, plants play a fundamental ecological role in the lives of most organisms for their utility in food and clothing production, fuel, shelter, and a host of other activities. Complete with images and diagrams depicting the parts and growth stages of plants, this volume clarifies what defines a plant and introduces readers to the structures of various plants as well as their complex roles within our environment.
This exuberant celebration of the weird and wonderful world of plants is full of unexpected facts, perfect for budding botanists and armchair art lovers alike. A vibrant, close-up exploration of plants, this colourful book focuses on the extraordinary and unexpected, from the tiny bee orchid to the mighty strangler fig. Looking at plants from across the globe, the specimens featured include carnivorous and poisonous species; plants that provide us with food, materials, or medicine; those that have a special symbiotic relationship with animals or other plants; as well as especially rare or record-breaking species. Among many other awesome plants, discover: Lithops hookeri, the pebble plant that disguises itself as a stone to hide from predators; Nepenthes lowii, the tree shrew toilet pitcher that thrives on nutrients from tree shrew droppings; Drosera rotundifolia, the sundew that digests insects after trapping them with sticky dew-like droplets; and Selaginella lepidophylla, the resurrection plant that can survive for years without any rainwater at all. As you explore these amazing species, gain a foundation of knowledge about the plant kingdom. How do plants get energy? Can plants talk? Why do plants have flowers? Can plants move? Learn how plants get energy and nutrients, how animals and plants work together, how plants can send out chemical messages, and finally, how to protect plants and their habitats. Bursting with colour, there’s something new and unexpected to discover on every page of this celebration of fierce and fabulous plants.
In The Cabaret of Plants, Mabey explores the plant species which have challenged our imaginations, awoken our wonder, and upturned our ideas about history, science, beauty and belief. Picked from every walk of life, they encompass crops, weeds, medicines, religious gathering-places and a water lily named after a queen. Beginning with pagan cults and creation myths, the cultural significance of plants has burst upwards, sprouting into forms as diverse as the panacea (the cure-all plant ginseng, a single root of which can cost up to $10,000), Newton's apple, the African 'vegetable elephant' or boabab - and the mystical, night-flowering Amazonian cactus, the moonflower. Ranging widely across science, art and cultural history, poetry and personal experience, Mabey puts plants centre stage, and reveals a true botanical cabaret, a world of tricksters, shape-shifters and inspired problem-solvers, as well as an enthralled audience of romantics, eccentric amateur scientists and transgressive artists. The Cabaret of Plants celebrates the idea that plants are not simply 'the furniture of the planet', but vital, inventive, individual beings worthy of respect - and that to understand this may be the best way of preserving life together on Earth.
A glorious celebration of the beauty, diversity, importance and sheer wonder of the most remarkable plants that shape our world, with exquisite illustrations from the incomparable collections of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. The authors are expert guides to the intriguing histories, significance and uses of over 80 key plants, revealing our complex relationship with them, both for use and beauty. Rich in cultural, historical, botanical and symbolic associations, the plants presented here, from every corner of the globe, both familiar and bizarre, all have fascinating stories to tell. Sections cover every aspect of our interaction with plants, starting with foods that laid the foundations for the development of civilizations, such as wheat, rice and maize, and those that enliven our diet, such as saffron and spices. Other sections look at plants that have helped to house us, including bamboo and the oak, or crops that have made people rich, notably tea, coffee and sugar cane. Many plants have been used medicinally, from willow to the Madagascar periwinkle. Some are the objects of obsession or are revered, including the tulip, the rose and the lotus, and some are bizarre, such as the world's largest flower, rafflesia, which smells of rotting flesh. For anyone interested in the beauty and diversity of plants, this beautiful book, richly illustrated with over 200 drawings and paintings, will be an inspiration and a delight.
Houseplants are more popular than ever before—especially with millennials, who are setting up their homes for the first time and discovering that nothing can add energy, style, and that essential “lived-in-ness” to their spaces better than a little bit of green. Whether it’s a statement-making fiddle-leaf fig or a tiny tabletop succulent, a houseplant instantly elevates the look of your home. But where to begin? In Decorating with Plants, Baylor Chapman walks readers through everything they need to know to bring houseplants into their home. First, there’s Plant Care 101: from how to assess light conditions to tricks for keeping your plants alive while on vacation, Chapman gives readers the simple, foundational info they need to ensure their plants will thrive. Then she introduces us to 28 of her favorites—specimens that are tough as nails but oh-so-stylish, from the eye-catching Rubber Tree to the delicate Cape Primrose. Finally, she guides readers through the home room by room: Place an aromatic plant like jasmine or gardenia to your entry to establish your home’s “signature scent.” Add a proper sense of scale to your living room with a ceiling-grazing palm. Create a living centerpiece of jewel-toned succulents for a dining table arrangement that will last long after your dinner party. From air purification to pest control, there’s no limit to what houseplants can do for your home—and Decorating with Plants is here to show you how to add them to spaces big and small with style.
For many people, the story of Charles Darwin goes like this: he ventured to the Galapagos Islands on the Beagle, was inspired by the biodiversity of the birds he saw there, and immediately returned home to write his theory of evolution. But this simplified narrative is inaccurate and lacking: it leaves out a major part of Darwin’s legacy. He published On the Origin of Species nearly thirty years after his voyages. And much of his life was spent experimenting with and observing plants. Darwin was a brilliant and revolutionary botanist whose observations and theories were far ahead of his time. With Darwin’s Most Wonderful Plants, biologist and gardening expert Ken Thompson restores this important aspect of Darwin’s biography while also delighting in the botanical world that captivated the famous scientist. Thompson traces how well Darwin’s discoveries have held up, revealing that many are remarkably long-lasting. Some findings are only now being confirmed and extended by high-tech modern research, while some have been corrected through recent analysis. We learn from Thompson how Darwin used plants to shape his most famous theory and then later how he used that theory to further push the boundaries of botanical knowledge. We also get to look over Darwin’s shoulder as he labors, learning more about his approach to research and his astonishing capacity for hard work. Darwin’s genius was to see the wonder and the significance in the ordinary and mundane, in the things that most people wouldn’t look at twice. Both Thompson and Darwin share a love for our most wonderful plants and the remarkable secrets they can unlock. This book will instill that same joy in casual gardeners and botany aficionados alike.
Molecular Plant Immunity provides an integrated look at both well-established and emerging concepts in plant disease resistance providing the most current information on this important vitally important topic within plant biology. Understanding the molecular basis of the plant immune system has implications on the development of new varieties of sustainable crops, understanding the challenges plant life will face in changing environments, as well as providing a window into immune function that could have translational appeal to human medicine. Molecular Plant Immunity opens with chapters reviewing how the first line of plant immune response is activated followed by chapters looking at the molecular mechanisms that allow fungi, bacteria, and oomycetes to circumvent those defenses. Plant resistance proteins, which provide the second line of plant immune defense, are then covered followed by chapters on the role of hormones in immunity and the mechanisms that modulate specific interaction between plants and viruses. The final chapters look at model plant-pathogen systems to review interaction between plants and fungal, bacterial, and viral pathogens. Written by a leading team of international experts, Molecular Plant Immunity will provide a needed resource to diverse research community investigated plant immunity.