Botanist, taxonomist and plant collector Sandra Knapp has put together an eclectic coffee-table–sized history of plants, flowers and botanical exploration illustrated with glorious color reproductions of paintings from London's Natural History Museum. Plant Discoveries: A Botanist's Voyage Through Plant Exploration (Firefly Books, $60) profiles 20 plant families, including peonies, poppies, roses, irises, tulips, cacti, conifers and daffodils. The coast banksia (Banksia integrifolia) at right was collected at Botany Bay by Joseph Banks and Daniel Solander on Captain Cook's expedition in the 1770s. At left is a fan palm (Livistona humilis) sketched by Ferdinand Bauer in January 1803 at Blue Mud Bay in Australia's Northern Territory.
Connect With Us:
ANIMATION: Hydrangea Colors: It’s All in the Soil
The Hydrangea macrophylla (big-leafed hydrangea) plant is the only known plant that can 'detect' the pH level in surrounding soil!
One of the world’s most popular ornamental flowers, it conceals a bouquet of biological and biochemical surprises. The iconic “snowball” shaped hydrangea blooms are a common staple of backyard gardens.
Hydrangea colors ultimately depend on the availability of aluminum ions(Al3+) within the soil.
To view all multimedia content, click "Latest Multimedia"!
An early peek at each new issue, with descriptions of feature articles, columns, and more. Every other issue contains links to everything in the latest issue's table of contents.News of book reviews published in American Scientist and around the web, as well as other noteworthy happenings in the world of science books.
To sign up for automatic emails of the American Scientist Update and Scientists' Nightstand issues, create an online profile, then sign up in the My AmSci area.