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In this book Stearn gives the meaning and origin of some 6000 botanical names, selecting those most likely to be encountered by gardeners and horticulturists. No other single source provides so much etymological information for the gardener, the result of years of scholarship and original research by the distinguished author. Also listed are 3000 of the most widely accepted vernacular names, cross-indexed to their correct scientific names, an invaluable reference for gardeners, writers, and historians. Plant classification and binomial nomenclature are explained, and there are notes on the structure and pronunciation of botanical Latin. No other single source provides so much etymological information for the gardener.
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World-famous nomenclature expert, William T. Stearn, left a gap in the horticultural world when he died in 2001. Since publishing his first scientific paper at the age of 18, he has had an enormous influence in the botanical field and was awarded the Veitch Memorial Medal, the Victoria Medal of Honour and a CBE. This is his definitive work on plant names and meanings for the everyday gardener. A vital reference work, he covers the meaning and origins of the most common everyday cultivated plant names, cross-referenced with some 3000 vernacular names to solve what is often a conundrum amongst gardeners. Full of amusing anecdotes related to the naming of plants, it is a fascinating insight into nomenclature and the clues they give to a plant's appearance: aureus - golden, azureus - sky blue, erubescens - blushing. They also give a sense of history with plants named after the discoverer or their patron - davidii - Armand David, knautia - Christopher Knaut and hookeri - Sir William Jackson Hooker. Greek and Latin mythology make appearances too as befits the horticultural mix of the two languages. A fascinating book to dip into and an important work that deserves a place on every gardener's bookshelf. - Lucy WatsonBook Description:
Stearn's classic dictionary of the meaning and origin of some 6,000 botanical names
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