African Trees is primarily an art book containing breathtaking images of some of the most extraordinary and beautiful indigenous trees in Southern and East Africa. Through photographs and text it conveys the magic of African tress and their vital interrelationship with the continent's people, soil, animals, birds and insects.
The book takes the reader on a journey to a range of habitats - from the savannah of the Serengeti and the bushveld of Mpumalanga to riverine forests, woodlands and other fragile ecosystems in the game reserves and national parks of South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and Kenya. Seventeen pristine destinations are covered in all. The author's hope is to encourage readers to look beyond the game and the birds and thereby appreciate the intrinsic beauty of the trees that sustain the wildlife and often ensure its very survival. Most of the photographs depict the trees not as disembodied objects but as living organisms located in some of the more unique environments and landscapes of Africa.
The text accompanying the superb photographs is essentially an account of the authors' personal experience among the trees of Africa, but it also touches on topics relating to conservation, animal activity, and the traditional and medicinal uses of trees by those who live among them and depend on them. It explores: the vital interrelationship between people and trees; geographic phenomena, as in the Ngorongoro Crater, that give rise to endemic vegetation types; unusual animal behavior, such as migration, that is associated with parts of the region; climatic activity, as at Sossusvlei, that results in an interaction between trees and the landscape; conservation efforts for sustainable eco-development. African Trees is a work of great personal conviction that challenges the way trees are perceived.