By: David Streeter and Ian Garrard
328 pages, 102 col plates
Illustrations by Ian Garrard
New edition of this glorious reference which describes and illustrates every one of Britain's 1400 wild flowers. The accompanying text describes each plant in detail, with essential notes on recognition, ecology, folklore and distribution.
``Garrard & Streeter' was rather under-acclaimed when it first appeared, 15 years ago, and has long been out of print and difficult to get hold of. Its reissue, with an updated text by David Streeter, is welcome for this is, in my opinion, the best illustrated flora since Keble Martin. Its main strengths are 1) a very good concise text, with the differences between related species set out and excellent habitat notes; and 2) excellent life-size paintings by the late Ian Garrard. He was particularly masterly at depicting the texture of leaves: his lady's mantles, pondweeds and docks are the best I have ever seen. The new edition benefits from a clearer layout to the text, with a larger font size. The flower colours, the weakest point of the original book, have been adjusted, but not always successfully - the pinks and magentas are still erratic, so that, for example, we have a blue Common Dog-violet, a blueish Creeping Thistle and a deep purple Fritillary. I prefer the matt paper of the original to the whiter, glossy plates of the new edition. The blurb claims that this is the most complete flora available. It isn't: it leaves out grasses, sedges, trees and ferns. But it illustrates more micro-species and established introductions than other books, and the best of the illustrations are matchless. If you didn't get it the first time around, get it now.' Peter Marren in British Wildlife, August 1998
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