This book is a reference for botanists and horticulturalists, including an historic account of names and a comprehensive glossary.
Stearn's classic dictionary of the meaning and origin of some 6,000 botanical names
With "knowledge, authority, charm and eloquence," author explains reasons for scientific nomenclature, history of terms, components, other helpful material.
A Gardener's Book of Plant Names, first published in 1963, is the classic non-technical reference on the origin and meanings of thousands of botanical names. The book provides, in alphabetical order by genus and species name, the derivation and pronunciation of the word, its definition, and, in many cases, interesting anecdotes or historical information about the plant and its use in, for example, gardens, medicine, food, or folklore. Also valuable is the extensive index, which cross-references some 1,800 common plant names to the corresponding botanical names.
A comprehensive reference for all involved with plants and gardens, whether they are growing, studying, or writing about them.
Zeus, Medusa, Hercules, Aphrodite. Did you know that these and other dynamic deities, heroes, and monsters of Greek and Roman mythology live on in the names of trees and flowers? Some grow in your local woodlands or right in your own backyard garden. In this delightful book, botanist Peter Bernhardt reveals the rich history and mythology that underlie the origins of many scientific plant names. Unlike other books about botanical taxonomy that take the form of heavy and intimidating lexicons, Bernhardt's account comes together in a series of interlocking stories. Each chapter opens with a short version of a classical myth, then links the tale to plant names, showing how each plant "resembles" its mythological counterpart with regard to its history, anatomy, life cycle, and conservation. You will learn, for example, that as our garden acanthus wears nasty spines along its leaf margins, it is named for the nymph who scratched the face of Apollo. The shape-shifting god, Proteus, gives his name to a whole family of shrubs and trees that produce colorful flowering branches in an astonishing number of sizes and shapes. Amateur and professional gardeners, high school teachers and professors of biology, botanists and conservationists alike will appreciate this book's entertaining and informative entry to the otherwise daunting field of botanical names. Engaging, witty, and memorable, Gods and Goddesses in the Garden transcends the genre of natural history and makes taxonomy a topic equally at home in the classroom and at cocktail parties.
Botanical names can be baffling to even the most experienced gardener. But a plant's botanical name is more than just a handy label—it can tell a plant's country of origin, the shape of its leaves, the color of its petals, and much more. The A to Z of Plant Names clears the confusion and allows every gardener to name plants with confidence. This comprehensive yet handy guide features the botanic names of the plants that gardeners really grow. Additional information includes suggested pronunciation, the common name, the derivation of the scientific name, the number of species currently accepted, the type of plant and the distribution. The A to Z of Plant Names helps demystify names, provides readers with the intriguing background information to naming conventions, and empowers gardeners everywhere to feel confident about naming plants.
Since Latin became the standard language for plant naming in the eighteenth century, it has been intrinsically linked with botany. And while mastery of the classical language may not be a prerequisite for tending perennials, all gardeners stand to benefit from learning a bit of Latin and its conventions in the field. Without it, they might buy a Hellebores foetidus and be unprepared for its fetid smell, or a Potentilla reptans with the expectation that it will stand straight as a sentinel rather than creep along the ground. An essential addition to the gardener’s library, this colorful, fully illustrated book details the history of naming plants, provides an overview of Latin naming conventions, and offers guidelines for pronunciation. Readers will learn to identify Latin terms that indicate the provenance of a given plant and provide clues to its color, shape, fragrance, taste, behavior, functions, and more. Full of expert instruction and practical guidance, Latin for Gardeners will allow novices and green thumbs alike to better appreciate the seemingly esoteric names behind the plants they work with, and to expertly converse with fellow enthusiasts. Soon they will realize that having a basic understanding of Latin before trips to the nursery or botanic garden is like possessing some knowledge of French before traveling to Paris; it enriches the whole experience.
Introduces the reader to the world of plant names in an easy to read style.
This reference work explains the grammar and syntax of botanical Latin, and covers the roots and origins of Latin and latinised geographical names, colour terms, symbols and abbreviations, diagnoses and descriptions, and the formation of names and epithets.
Though he didn’t realize it at the time, David Lee began this book twenty-five years ago as he was hiking in the mountains outside Kuala Lumpur. Surrounded by the wonders of the jungle, Lee found his attention drawn to one plant in particular, a species of fern whose electric blue leaves shimmered amidst the surrounding green. The evolutionary wonder of the fern’s extravagant beauty filled Lee with awe—and set him on a career-long journey to understand everything about plant colors. Nature’s Palette is the fully ripened fruit of that journey—a highly illustrated, immensely entertaining exploration of the science of plant color. Beginning with potent reminders of how deeply interwoven plant colors are with human life and culture—from the shifting hues that told early humans when fruits and vegetables were edible to the indigo dyes that signified royalty for later generations—Lee moves easily through details of pigments, the evolution of color perception, the nature of light, and dozens of other topics. Through a narrative peppered with anecdotes of a life spent pursuing botanical knowledge around the world, he reveals the profound ways that efforts to understand and exploit plant color have influenced every sphere of human life, from organic chemistry to Renaissance painting to the highly lucrative orchid trade. Lavishly illustrated and packed with remarkable details sure to delight gardeners and naturalists alike, Nature’s Palette will enchant anyone who’s ever wondered about red roses and blue violets—or green thumbs.
Contains nearly 400 names additional to those appearing in Brummitt's 'Authors of Plant Names'. Extra biographical data is included for 231 authors, and full names are given for 189 authors listed by Brummit and Powell with initials only. An invaluable reference book for all workers on pteridophytes, and indeed for all botanists.
Prithipalsingh, Indian taxonomist; contributed articles.
Knowledge of plant names can give insight into largely forgotten beliefs. For example, the common red poppy is known as "Blind Man" due to an old superstitious belief that if the poppy were put to the eyes it would cause blindness. Many plant names derived from superstition, folk lore, or primal beliefs. Other names are purely descriptive and can serve to explain the meaning of the botanical name. For example, Beauty-Berry is the name given to the American shrub that belongs to the genus Callicarpa. Callicarpa is Greek for beautiful fruit. Still other names come from literary sources providing rich detail of the transmission of words through the ages. Conceived as part of the author's wider interest in plant and tree lore and ethnobotanical studies, this fully revised edition of Elsevier's Dictionary of Plant Names and Their Origins contains over 30,000 vernacular and literary English names of plants. Wild and cultivated plants alike are identified by the botanical name. Further detail provides a brief account of the meaning of the name and detailed commentary on common usage. * Includes color images * Inclusive of all Latin terms with vernacular derivatives * The most comprehensive guide for plant scientists, linguists, botanists, and historians
For anyone looking for a deeper appreciation of the wonderful world of plants! Gardeners are inherently curious. They make note of a plant label in a botanical garden and then go home to learn more. They pick up fallen blossoms to examine them closer. They spend hours reading plant catalogs. But they are often unable to accurately name or describe their discoveries. A Botanist’s Vocabulary gives gardeners and naturalists a better understanding of what they see and a way to categorize and organize the natural world in which they are so intimately involved. Through concise definitions and detailed black and white illustrations, it defines 1300 words commonly used by botanists, naturalists, and gardeners to describe plants.
Every gardener needs to know their Latin names. They may look confusing at first, but once you understand what certain key words mean, impenetrable-sounding and hard-to-pronounce species names are suddenly demystified. Many Latin names hide the secrets of where the plant is found, its colour, flowering times, leaf pattern, natural habitat and all sorts of other information that's extremely useful to the gardener: if you want a plant for a shady place, choose one with a name ending in sylvestris ('of woods'), while if your garden is dry, look out for the suffix epigeios ('of dry places'). More than just a dictionary of plant names, this fascinating book explains the meaning of hundreds of Latin plant terms, grouped into handily themed sections such as plants that are named after famous women, plants that are named after the shape of their leaves, plants that are named after their fragrance or the time of year that they flower. Within these pages you'll learn that Digitalis purpurea (the common foxglove) is purple, that the sanguineum in Geranium sanguineum means 'bloody' (its common name is the bloody cranesbill), and to steer clear of any plant whose Latin name ends in infestus.
Publisher description: The Dictionary of Plant Names is a guide that not only cross references common names to their Latin counterparts, but also details the origins, meanings, and pronunciation of each name. Each genus name is followed by the suggested pronunciation, the family in which it is placed, and the derivation of the name (Latin, Greek, or other). Then the main garden use of the plants in the genus, e.g. herbaceous perennials, trees, etc., is listed. Many interesting facts come to light in the origin of the Latinate name, for example that Kalmia is named after Pehr Kalm, a Finnish student of Linnaeus. Each genus concludes with the common name and place of origin of the whole species, if applicable. Species are listed alphabetically under the genus with the same categories of information.
The dictionary contains about 30,000 vernacular and literary English names of plants (plus a few American), both wild and cultivated, with their botanical name and a brief account of the names' meaning if known. It was conceived as part of the author's wider interest in plant and tree lore, and ethnobotanical studies. Knowledge of plant names can give insight into largely forgotten beliefs. Why for example is, or was, the common red poppy known as "Blind Man"? An old superstition has it that if the poppy were put to the eyes it would cause blindness. Such names were probably the result of some taboo against picking the plant. Similarly, other names were likely to have been applied as a result of a country mother's warning to her children against eating poisonous berries. For the warning carries more weight when the name given to the berry reinforces the warning. Many such plants or fruits may be ascribed to the devil, Devil's Berries for Deadly Nightshade is an example. Names may also be purely descriptive, and can also serve to explain the meaning of the botanical name. Beauty-Berry is an example: it is the name given to the American shrub that belongs to the genus Callicarpa, which is made up of two Greek words that mean beauty and berry. Literary, or "book" names, have also been included in this dictionary, as being a very important part of the whole. Many of them provide links in the transmission of words through the ages. Thor's Beard, for example, is a book name for "houseleek", and has never been used in the dialect. But it highlights the legend that houseleek is a lightning plant, and by reverse logic is a preserver from fire.

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