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The Cabaret of Plants: Botany and the Imagination

 Author: Mabey, Richard

Richard Mabey

The Cabaret of Plants: Botany and the Imagination

“In The Cabaret of Plants, Mabey explores the plant species which have challenged our imaginations, awoken our wonder, and upturned our ideas about history, science, beauty and belief.

“Picked from every walk of life, they encompass crops, weeds, medicines, religious gathering-places and a water lily named after a queen. Beginning with pagan cults and creation myths, the cultural significance of plants has burst upwards, sprouting into forms as diverse as the panacea (the cure-all plant ginseng, a single root of which can cost up to $10,000), Newton’s apple, the African ‘vegetable elephant’ or baobab – and the mystical, night-flowering Amazonian cactus, the moonflower.”


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