Charles Darwin is best known for his work on the evolution of animals, but in fact a large part of his contribution to the natural sciences is focused on plants. His observations are crucial to our modern understanding of everything from the amazing pollination process of orchids to the way that vines climb.
Darwin and the Art of Botany collects writings from six often overlooked texts devoted entirely to plants, and pairs each excerpt with beautiful botanical art from the library at the Oak Spring Garden Foundation, creating a gorgeously illustrated volume that never existed in Darwin’s own lifetime, and hasn’t since. Evolutionary botanist and science historian James Costa brings his expertise to each entry, situating Darwin’s words in the context of the knowledge and research of the time. The result is a new way of visualizing Darwin’s work, and a greater understanding of the ways he’s shaped our world.