The Book of Orchids

A Life-Size Guide to Six Hundred Species from around the World

Author: Mark W. Chase,Maarten J. M. Christenhusz,Tom Mirenda

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022622466X

Category: Nature

Page: 656

View: 3513

One in every seven flowering plants on earth is an orchid. Yet orchids retain an air of exotic mystery—and they remain remarkably misunderstood and underappreciated. The orchid family contains an astonishing array of colors, forms, and smells that captivate growers from all walks of life across the globe. Though undeniably elegant, the popular moth orchid—a grocery store standard—is a bland stand-in when compared with its thousands of more complex and fascinating brethren, such as the Demon Queller, which grows in dark forests where its lovely blooms are believed to chase evil forces away. There is the Fetid Sun-God, an orchid that lures female flies to lay their eggs on its flowers by emitting a scent of rancid cheese. Or the rare, delicate Lizard Orchid, which mimics the appearance of lizards but smells distinctly of goat. The Book of Orchids revels in the diversity and oddity of these beguiling plants. Six hundred of the world’s most intriguing orchids are displayed, along with life-size photographs that capture botanical detail, as well as information about distribution, peak flowering period, and each species’ unique attributes, both natural and cultural. With over 28,000 known species—and more being discovered each year—the orchid family is arguably the largest and most geographically widespread of the flowering plant families. Including the most up-to-date science and accessibly written by botanists Mark Chase, Maarten Christenhusz, and Tom Mirenda, each entry in The Book of Orchids will entice researchers and orchid enthusiasts alike. With stunning full-color images, The Book of Orchids is sure to become the go-to reference for these complex, alluring, and extraordinarily adaptable plants.
Posted in Nature

The Book of Seeds

A Life-Size Guide to Six Hundred Species from around the World

Author: Paul Smith

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022636237X

Category: Science

Page: 656

View: 2067

Seeds are nature’s consummate survivors. The next time you admire a field of waving green grassland or a stunning grove of acacia, stop to consider how it got that way—often against incredible odds. Seeds can survive freezing temperatures and drought. They can pass through our digestive systems without damage and weather a trip across the ocean, hitching a ride on marine debris. They can even endure complete desiccation, a feat taken to extraordinary lengths by the date palm, a seed from which was recovered from the palace of Herod the Great was germinated after some two thousand years. The Book of Seeds takes readers through six hundred of the world’s seed species, revealing their extraordinary beauty and rich diversity. Each page pairs a beautifully composed photo of a seed—life-size, and, in some cases, enlarged to display fine detail—with a short description, a map showing distribution, and information on conservation status. The whole spectrum of seeds is covered here. There are prolific species like corn and less widely distributed species, like the brilliant blue seeds of the traveler’s palm or the bird of paradise flower, aptly named for its distinctive orange coiffure. There are tiny seeds and seeds weighing up to forty pounds. And while seeds in all their shapes, sizes, and colors grant us sustenance, there are even some we would be wise to treat with caution, such as the rosary pea, whose seeds are considered more toxic than ricin. The essential guide to these complex plant creations, The Book of Seeds offers readers a rare, up-close look that will inspire scientists and nature lovers alike.
Posted in Science

The Book of Snakes

A Life-Size Guide to Six Hundred Species from around the World

Author: Mark O'Shea

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022645939X

Category: Nature

Page: 656

View: 4263

For millennia, humans have regarded snakes with an exceptional combination of fascination and revulsion. Some people recoil in fear at the very suggestion of these creatures, while others happily keep them as pets. Snakes can convey both beauty and menace in a single tongue flick and so these creatures have held a special place in our cultures. Yet, for as many meanings that we attribute to snakes—from fertility and birth to sin and death—the real-life species represent an even wider array of wonders. The Book of Snakes presents 600 species of snakes from around the world, covering nearly one in six of all snake species. It will bring greater understanding of a group of reptiles that have existed for more than 160 million years, and that now inhabit every continent except Antarctica, as well as two of the great oceans. This volume pairs spectacular photos with easy-to-digest text. It is the first book on these creatures that combines a broad, worldwide sample with full-color, life-size accounts. Entries include close-ups of the snake’s head and a section of the snake at actual size. The detailed images allow readers to examine the intricate scale patterns and rainbow of colors as well as special features like a cobra’s hood or a rattlesnake’s rattle. The text is written for laypeople and includes a glossary of frequently used terms. Herpetologists and herpetoculturists alike will delight in this collection, and even those with a more cautious stance on snakes will find themselves drawn in by the wild diversity of the suborder Serpentes.
Posted in Nature

The Book of Fungi

A Life-Size Guide to Six Hundred Species from around the World

Author: Peter Roberts,Shelley Evans

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022617719X

Category: Nature

Page: 656

View: 8947

Colorful, mysterious, and often fantastically shaped, fungi have been a source of wonder and fascination since the earliest hunter-gatherers first foraged for them. Today there are few, if any, places on Earth where fungi have not found themselves a home. And these highly specialized organisms are an indispensable part of the great chain of life. They not only partner in symbiotic relationships with over ninety percent of the world’s trees and flowering plant species, they also recycle and create humus, the fertile soil from which such flora receive their nutrition. Some fungi are parasites or saprotrophs; many are poisonous and, yes, hallucinogenic; others possess life-enhancing properties that can be tapped for pharmaceutical products; while a delicious few are prized by epicureans and gourmands worldwide. In this lavishly illustrated volume, six hundred fungi from around the globe get their full due. Each species here is reproduced at its actual size, in full color, and is accompanied by a scientific explanation of its distribution, habitat, association, abundance, growth form, spore color, and edibility. Location maps give at-a-glance indications of each species’ known global distribution, and specially commissioned engravings show different fruitbody forms and provide the vital statistics of height and diameter. With information on the characteristics, distinguishing features, and occasionally bizarre habits of these fungi, readers will find in this book the common and the conspicuous, the unfamiliar and the odd. There is a fungal predator, for instance, that hunts its prey with lassos, and several that set traps, including one that entices sows by releasing the pheromones of a wild boar. Mushrooms, morels, puffballs, toadstools, truffles, chanterelles—fungi from habitats spanning the poles and the tropics, from the highest mountains to our own backyards—are all on display in this definitive work.
Posted in Nature

Plants of the World

An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Vascular Plants

Author: Maarten J. M. Christenhusz,Michael F. Fay,Mark W. Chase

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022653670X

Category: Nature

Page: 816

View: 7297

Plants of the World is the first book to systematically explore every vascular plant family on earth—more than four hundred and fifty of them—organized in a modern phylogenetic order. Detailed entries for each family include descriptions, distribution, evolutionary relationships, and fascinating information on economic uses of plants and etymology of their names. All entries are also copiously illustrated in full color with more than 2,500 stunning photographs. A collaboration among three celebrated botanists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Plants of the World is authoritative, comprehensive, and beautiful. Covering everything from ferns to angiosperms, it will be an essential resource for practicing botanists, horticulturists, and nascent green thumbs alike.
Posted in Nature

Bloom-Again Orchids

50 Easy-Care Orchids that Flower Again and Again and Again

Author: judywhite

Publisher: Timber Press

ISBN: 9781604691337

Category: Gardening

Page: 132

View: 4588

Orchids have a reputation as the divas of the plant world: fussy, difficult-to-grow plants that—on top of all that—are prohibitively expensive. But there are plenty of orchids that anyone can grow. Orchids are no more difficult than familiar houseplants such as the African violet, and can be made to thrive and bloom in average indoor conditions. You just need to know what makes them happy. Bloom-Again Orchids highlights the easiest, most fuss free varieties and includes invaluable tips on where to buy orchids and how to keep them in bloom. Each of the fifty profiles focuses on a commonly available orchid variety and includes a description, photograph, chart of basic growing requirements, and a handy twelve-point checklist.
Posted in Gardening

The Marie Selby Botanical Gardens Illustrated Dictionary of Orchid Genera

Author: Peggy Alrich,Wesley E. Higgins

Publisher: Comstock Pub Assoc

ISBN: 9780801447372

Category: Gardening

Page: 481

View: 405

A comprehensive and extensively illustrated account of orchid genera to date. Its concise entries provide details of nomenclature, classification, original publication, etymology, and geographic range, along with a brief description and color images of representative flowers.
Posted in Gardening

Orchids Handbook

A Practical Guide to the Care and Cultivation to 35 Orchid Species and Types

Author: Michael Tibbs

Publisher: CompanionHouse Books

ISBN: 9781620083055

Category: Gardening

Page: 176

View: 3700

Everything you always wanted to know about growing and caring for orchids, with practical advice on care and cultivation, plus a comprehensive plant directory of 35 popular varieties.
Posted in Gardening

Deceptive Beauties

The World of Wild Orchids

Author: Christian Ziegler

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226982971

Category: Nature

Page: 184

View: 8045

Confucius called them the “king of fragrant plants,” and John Ruskin condemned them as “prurient apparitions.” Across the centuries, orchids have captivated us with their elaborate exoticism, their powerful perfumes, and their sublime seductiveness.But the disquieting beauty of orchids is an unplanned marvel of evolution, and the story of orchids is as captivating as any novel. As acclaimed writer Michael Pollan and National Geographic photographer Christian Ziegler spin tales of orchid conquest in Deceptive Beauties: The World of Wild Orchids, we learn how these flowers can survive and thrive in the harshest of environments, from tropical cloud forests to the Arctic, from semi-deserts to rocky mountainsides; how their shapes, colors, and scents are, as Darwin put it, “beautiful contrivances” meant to dupe pollinating male insects in the strangest ways. What other flowers, after all, can mimic the pheromones and even appearance of female insects, so much so that some male bees prefer sex with the orchids over sex with their own kind? And insects aren’t the only ones to fall for the orchids’ charms. Since the “orchidelirium” of the Victorian era, humans have braved the wilds to search them out and devoted copious amounts of time and money propagating and hybridizing, nurturing and simply gazing at them. This astonishing book features over 150 unprecedented color photographs taken by Christian Ziegler himself as he trekked through wilderness on five continents to capture the diversity and magnificence of orchids in their natural habitats. His intimate and astonishing images allow us to appreciate up close nature’s most intoxicating and deceptive beauties.
Posted in Nature

The Book of Shells

A Life-Size Guide to Identifying and Classifying Six Hundred Seashells

Author: M. G. Harasewych,Fabio Moretzsohn

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022617705X

Category: Science

Page: 656

View: 9036

Who among us hasn’t marveled at the diversity and beauty of shells? Or picked one up, held it to our ear, and then gazed in wonder at its shape and hue? Many a lifelong shell collector has cut teeth (and toes) on the beaches of the Jersey Shore, the Outer Banks, or the coasts of Sanibel Island. Some have even dived to the depths of the ocean. But most of us are not familiar with the biological origin of shells, their role in explaining evolutionary history, and the incredible variety of forms in which they come. Shells are the external skeletons of mollusks, an ancient and diverse phylum of invertebrates that are in the earliest fossil record of multicellular life over 500 million years ago. There are over 100,000 kinds of recorded mollusks, and some estimate that there are over amillion more that have yet to be discovered. Some breathe air, others live in fresh water, but most live in the ocean. They range in size from a grain of sand to a beach ball and in weight from a few grams to several hundred pounds. And in this lavishly illustrated volume, they finally get their full due. The Book of Shells offers a visually stunning and scientifically engaging guide to six hundred of the most intriguing mollusk shells, each chosen to convey the range of shapes and sizes that occur across a range of species. Each shell is reproduced here at its actual size, in full color, and is accompanied by an explanation of the shell’s range, distribution, abundance, habitat, and operculum—the piece that protects the mollusk when it’s in the shell. Brief scientific and historical accounts of each shell and related species include fun-filled facts and anecdotes that broaden its portrait. The Matchless Cone, for instance, or Conus cedonulli, was one of the rarest shells collected during the eighteenth century. So much so, in fact, that a specimen in 1796 was sold for more than six times as much as a painting by Vermeer at the same auction. But since the advent of scuba diving, this shell has become far more accessible to collectors—though not without certain risks. Some species of Conus produce venom that has caused more than thirty known human deaths. The Zebra Nerite, the Heart Cockle, the Indian Babylon, the Junonia, the Atlantic Thorny Oyster—shells from habitats spanning the poles and the tropics, from the highest mountains to the ocean’s deepest recesses, are all on display in this definitive work.
Posted in Science

The New Encyclopedia of Orchids

1500 Species in Cultivation

Author: I. F. La Croix

Publisher: Timber Press

ISBN: 0881928763

Category: Gardening

Page: 524

View: 9428

The Infinitely Varied Orchid Family provides a never-ending source of unusual plants in a range of shapes, colors, fragrances, and sizes. As the demand for interesting and unusual species increases, so too does the need for a comprehensive reference on how to grow them. This encyclopedia, written by respected botanist Isobyl la Croix, offers detailed descriptions of 1500 cultivated species in 350 genera from Acampe to Zygostates. More than 1000 photographs will aid enthusiasts in choosing new plants for their collections as well as provide accurate ID.
Posted in Gardening

Orchid

A Cultural History

Author: Jim Endersby

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022642703X

Category: Nature

Page: 288

View: 6589

At once delicate, exotic, and elegant, orchids are beloved for their singular, instantly recognizable beauty. Found in nearly every climate, the many species of orchid have carried symbolic weight in countless cultures over time. The ancient Greeks associated them with fertility and thought that parents who ingested orchid root tubers could control the sex of their child. During the Victorian era, orchids became deeply associated with romance and seduction. And in twentieth-century hard-boiled detective stories, they transformed into symbols of decadence, secrecy, and cunning. What is it about the orchid that has enthralled the imagination for so many centuries? And why do they still provoke so much wonder? Following the stories of orchids throughout history, Jim Endersby divides our attraction to them into four key themes: science, empire, sex, and death. When it comes to empire, for instance, orchids are a prime example of the exotic riches sought by Europeans as they shaped their plans for colonization. He also reveals how Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution became intimately entangled with the story of the orchid as he investigated their methods of cross-pollination. As he shows, orchids—perhaps because of their extraordinarily diverse colors, shapes, and sizes—have also bloomed repeatedly in films, novels, plays, and poems, from Shakespeare to science fiction, from thrillers to elaborate modernist novels. Featuring many gorgeous illustrations from the collection of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Orchid: A Cultural History tells, for the first time, the extraordinary story of orchids and our prolific interest in them. It is an enchanting tale not only for gardeners and plant collectors, but anyone curious about the flower’s obsessive hold on the imagination in history, cinema, literature, and more.
Posted in Nature

Four Seasons of Orchids

Author: Greg Allikas,Ned Nash

Publisher: Creative Homeowner Press

ISBN: 9781580114950

Category: Gardening

Page: 256

View: 6320

"Four seasons of Orchids is an exquisitely illustrated guide to the world's most beautiful flowering plants. Discover the plant species that will fill any flowering gap to give you spectacular year-round color. Includes detailed step-by-step potting guides for all the popular species from Phalaenopsis to Cattleya. Learn about the orchid family's rich history and the perfect cultivation methods to let your orchids flourish and bloom again."--from cover, p. [4].
Posted in Gardening

Rare Orchids

Author: Bela Kalman,Rosalie H. Davis,Mariko Kawaguchi

Publisher: Bulfinch Press

ISBN: 9780821225677

Category: Gardening

Page: 143

View: 6914

The author spent nearly three years photographing thousands of orchids in all their diversity. This volume of the pictures features more than 120 new hybrids, obscure specimens and classic blooms, with informative captions and essays on the history, mystique and hybridization of orchids worldwide.
Posted in Gardening

Understanding Orchids

An Uncomplicated Guide to Growing the World's Most Exotic Plants

Author: William Cullina

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

ISBN: 9780618263264

Category: Gardening

Page: 260

View: 7179

A practical handbook for novice and experienced horticulturalists alike provides everything a gardener needs to know about these popular and exotic plants, offering more than two hundred full-color photographs, detailed descriptions, and easy-to-follow care and cultivation instructions for dozens of orchid species.
Posted in Gardening

The Orchid Whisperer

Expert Secrets for Growing Beautiful Orchids

Author: Bruce Rogers

Publisher: Chronicle Books

ISBN: 145211370X

Category: Gardening

Page: 144

View: 3712

Orchids can bloom year after year. In this essential guide, Bruce Rogers, "The Orchid Whisperer", shares his expert tips from more than three decades of breeding and growing orchids. The book demystifies the growing process and features more than 100 lush color photographs of breathtaking plants. Best of all, it reveals professional secrets not found anywhere else for blooming, repotting, spotting hazards and pests, grooming, decorating, and much more. Perfect for beginners as well as orchid experts looking for new tricks, The Orchid Whisperer provides everything readers need to know to keep healthy orchids that will flower again and again!
Posted in Gardening

The Book of Leaves

A Leaf-by-Leaf Guide to Six Hundred of the World's Great Trees

Author: Allen J. Coombes

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022617686X

Category: Nature

Page: 656

View: 340

Of all our childhood memories, few are quite as thrilling, or as tactile, as those of climbing trees. Scampering up the rough trunk, spying on the world from the cool green shelter of the canopy, lying on a limb and looking up through the leaves at the summer sun almost made it seem as if we were made for trees, and trees for us.Even in adulthood, trees retain their power, from the refreshing way their waves of green break the monotony of a cityscape to the way their autumn transformations take our breath away. In this lavishly illustrated volume, the trees that have enriched our lives finally get their full due, through a focus on the humble leaves that serve, in a sense, as their public face. The Book of Leaves offers a visually stunning and scientifically engaging guide to six hundred of the most impressive and beautiful leaves from around the world. Each leaf is reproduced here at its actual size, in full color, and is accompanied by an explanation of the range, distribution, abundance, and habitat of the tree on which it’s found. Brief scientific and historical accounts of each tree and related species include fun-filled facts and anecdotes that broaden its portrait. The Henry’s Maple, for instance, found in China and named for an Irish doctor who collected leaves there, bears little initial resemblance to the statuesque maples of North America, from its diminutive stature to its unusual trifoliolate leaves. Or the Mediterranean Olive, which has been known to live for more than 1,500 years and whose short, narrow leaves only fall after two or three years, pushed out in stages by the emergence of younger leaves. From the familiar friends of our backyards to the giants of deep woods, The Book of Leaves brings the forest to life—and to our living rooms—as never before.
Posted in Nature

Easy Orchids

Simple Secrets for Glorious Gardens, Indoors and Out

Author: Mimi Luebbermann

Publisher: Chronicle Books Llc

ISBN: N.A

Category: Orchid culture.

Page: 106

View: 9369

This gloriously illustrated book shows how to transform a garden, windowsill, or patio into a floral paradise with a spray of lively Phalanopsis orchids, brightly colored Dendorbiums, or vigorous Cymbidiums. Vivid, full-color photographs accompany the simple instructions. 90 photos.
Posted in Orchid culture.

Orchids

Author: Peter Arnold

Publisher: Rizzoli International Publications

ISBN: 9780847818105

Category: Gardening

Page: 120

View: 4889

The mysterious orchid has been used and admired since ancient times. Confucius praised the orchid's beauty 2500 years ago, and the ancient Greeks dried its roots for use in medicine. In medieval times, orchids were believed to have magical aphrodisiac qualities, and early herbalists thought orchids were the food of satyrs. Today the tens of thousands of orchid species that have been discovered over the centuries comprise the most varied and highly evolved family of the entire plant kingdom, and new orchid species are still being discovered in the wild. Today also, tropical forests are a source of commercial gain, with the result that many natural orchid species are presently in danger through destruction of habitat, a danger originating in Victorian times when orchid hunters scoured tropical lands for specimens of this very fashionable plant. Peter Arnold's luminous photographs are presented here along with the fascinating history of orchids, and an extensive section on growing orchids that outlines the surprisingly simple requirements for success in maintaining these exotic plants in the home or greenhouse. Lists of orchid suppliers and societies allow the hobbyist to obtain plants, tools, or advice, and guide the curious enthusiast to orchid shows and other orchid-related events. Photographer Arnold has traveled over the world photographing orchids in all of their vibrant colors and sensual, even bizarre shapes. Flowers from the most common Cattleya to the lesser-known species of Dendrobium and Paphiopedilum with common names such as 'Moth orchid,' and 'Dancing Lady orchid,' 'Bubblegum orchid,' and 'Swan orchid' are an inspiring visual feast, and a testament to the genius of nature. The mysterious orchid has been used and admired since ancient times. Confucius praised the orchid's beauty 2500 years ago, and the ancient Greeks dried its roots for use in medicine. In medieval times, orchids were believed to have magical aphrodisiac qualities, and early herbalists thought orchids were the food of satyrs. Today the tens of thousands of orchid species that have been discovered over the centuries comprise the most varied and highly evolved family of the entire plant kingdom, and new orchid species are still being discovered in the wild. Today also, tropical forests are a source of commercial gain, with the result that many natural orchid species are presently in danger through destruction of habitat, a danger originating in Victorian times when orchid hunters scoured tropical lands for specimens of this very fashionable plant. Peter Arnold's luminous photographs are presented here along with the fascinating history of orchids, and an extensive section on growing orchids that outlines the surprisingly simple requirements for success in maintaining these exotic plants in the home or greenhouse. Lists of orchid suppliers and societies allow the hobbyist to obtain plants, tools, or advice, and guide the curious enthusiast to orchid shows and other orchid-related events. Photographer Arnold has traveled over the world photographing orchids in all of their vibrant colors and sensual, even bizarre shapes. Flowers from the most common Cattleya to the lesser-known species of Dendrobium and Paphiopedilum with common names such as 'Moth orchid,' and 'Dancing Lady orchid,' 'Bubblegum orchid,' and 'Swan orchid' are an inspiring visual feast, and a testament to the genius of nature.
Posted in Gardening

Ultimate Orchid

Author: Thomas J. Sheehan,American Orchid Society

Publisher: DK Publishing (Dorling Kindersley)

ISBN: 9780789480446

Category: Gardening

Page: 160

View: 7491

Presents photographs and illustrations that capture the color, shape, size, and beauty of this flower, and features information about growing orchids and historical vignettes.
Posted in Gardening