In Pursuit of Plants: Experiences of Nineteenth Century and Early Twentieth Century Plant Collectors
Illustrated with a selection of nineteenth-century botanical art and modern photographs, In Pursuit of Plants is a compilation of fascinating first-hand accounts of the experiences of nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century collectors in their pursuit of plants from around the world.
In Surinam, plant hunter F.W. Hostmann allowed vampire bats to suck his toes; in west Africa William Grant Milne was forced to sell his clothes and travel naked for 200 miles; Thomas Drummond was attacked by a bear in the North American woods; George Forrest narrowly escaped rampaging lamas in western China; and, in Fiji, Berthold Seemann recorded which plants cannibals used as an accompaniment to human flesh.
Extracted from journals and letters, some previously unpublished, the accounts are a mix of adventure, of sometimes grim but always captivating and occasionally humorous images of a lost world, and of stories of the practical problems associated with plant collecting.