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The Cactus Primer

By: AC Gibson and PS Nobel

296 pages, 304 b/w photo, 92 illus, tabs

Harvard University Press

Paperback | Oct 1990 | #9626 | ISBN: 067408991X
Temporarily out of stock: order now to get this when available Details
NHBS Price: £27.95 $34/€31 approx

About this book

Comprehensive look at this fascinating group of plants.

Everyone with more than a passing interest in the cacti will want this book. It is a pleasure to read, highly informative on a wealth of subjects, and profusely illustrated...A marvelous example of how all the components of scientific inquiry fit together to illuminate the biology of a fascinating evolutionary lineage. It deserves a wide readership. -- Michael Nee Brittonia The authors state that their Primer 'is the first and not the final chapter of the learning experience.' If this is the case, then this book is a wonderful beginning! Gibson and Nobel have done a masterful job of gathering together information about the cactus family and of presenting it in a pleasant and lucid style. -- Edward F. Anderson American Scientist There probably is no other pair better qualified to write such a book. It is clearly the most comprehensive book on cacti ever written...An unequalled, detailed, comprehensive, one-volume library on cactus biology that should serve as a valuable resource for anyone seriously interested in the field. -- James W. O'Leary Science Books and Films This volume will be welcomed by botanists, horticulturists and amateur cactophiles alike, and especially by those interested in the drier parts of the world, for it is not possible to find such a mass of scattered information in one book--and amassed and expertly evaluated by two recognized specialists. -- Richard Evans Schultes Journal of Ethnobiology


The Cactus Plant Diversity of Form General Physiological Characteristics Reproductive Structures Classification Selected Bibliography Cacti with Primitive Features Vegetative Structure of a Nonsucculent Pereskia Organogenesis of the Shoot System Reproductive Structures of Pereskia Types of Leaf-Bearing Cacti Selected Bibliography Succulence Anatomy of Stem Succulence in Cacti Roots and Root Succulence Significance of Succulence for Growth and Survival Selected Bibliography Gas Exchange and Crassulacean Acid Metabolism General Characteristics of Gas Exchange Gas Exchange of Pereskia Gas Exchange in Stem-Succulent Cacti Selected Bibliography Areoles and Spines The Nature of Spines The Nature of Trichomes Possible Functions of Spines and Trichomes Areoles and Flowers Selected Bibliography Tubercles and Ribs Phyllotaxy and the Fihonacci Sequence Development of Tubercles and Ribs Adaptive Significance of Ribs Cladodes Selected Bibliography Factors Affecting Distribution Water Low Temperature High Temperature Selected Bibliography Growth Habits Diversification of Growth Habits Evolution of Wood Structure Plant Form and Interception of Photosynthetically Active Radiation Selected Bibliography Special Chemicals Betalain Pigments Alkaloids Triterpenes and Sterols Mucilage and Latex Protein Inclusions in Sieve-Tube Elements Crystals Elemental Analysis Plant Defenses--An Overview Selected Bibliography Phylogeny and Speciation Reconstructing Phylogenies Phylogenetic Studies and the Classification of Cacti Speciation, Hybridization, and Polyploidy Selected Bibliography Evolutionary Relationships The Hypothetical Ancestor Relatives Biogeography The Evolution of Cactus Characteristics--An Overview Selected Bibliography Glossary Index

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Arthur C. Gibson is Professor of Biology, University of California at Los Angeles. Park S. Nobel is Distinguished Professor of Biology, Emeritus, at the University of California at Los Angeles.

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