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The Plant Hunters: True Stories of Their Daring Adventures to the Far Corners of the Earth
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The Plant Hunters: True Stories of Their Daring Adventures to the Far Corners of the Earth

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  128 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
Driven by an all-consuming passion, the plant hunters traveled around the world, facing challenges at every turn: tropical illnesses, extreme terrain, and dangerous animals. They battled piranhas, tigers, and vampire bats. Even the plants themselves could be lethal! But these intrepid eighteenth- and nineteenth-century explorers were determined to find and collect new and ...more
96 pages
Published April 10th 2012 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
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Debbie Graham
Sep 12, 2012 rated it liked it
Really wanted to love this book and it is a great topic. I thought that it missed an opportunity to at least mention the colonial/imperalist relationship. It also could have used a map or even two? Also some pictures seemed curiously placed (p 62-64, why no picture of kalaw trees/plant). Also the same section-no information as to what leprosy is and yet on page 17 describes a plant as something that "doesn't walk or speak"...so on one hand talking over the target audiences' head and at other poi ...more
Sesana
May 01, 2013 rated it liked it
A really interesting topic, but not the best execution. What people have gone through just to try to collect plants is fascinating enough. But the book felt disorganized and somewhat rambling, strange for something so short. And it was disappointing that the author felt the need to talk down to her readers, and that she entirely avoided acknowledging the imperialist mindset that informed a lot of the "discovery" of the 19th century.
Amy Jewell
Mar 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
1. Lanie's Real Life Adventure by Jane Kurtz (2010)

2. I chose this fiction book to complement my non-fiction book because I feel that the non-fiction book I chose is pretty historically based. The non-fiction text details plant exploration and identification from the 1800's and the adversity the plant hunters faced. This fiction twin text will lend a contemporary feel to the issues involving plant care including the harm of pesticides that were not an issue in the 1800's. Both books detail the t
...more
katsok
This is one of those great books that I feel more intelligent for having read it. I had honestly never heard of plant hunters. Never given much thought to how so many of the plants in the United States arrived here. Now I know. My favorite line comes not from the main text but from the author note:

...I learned about all of them at a library near my house. That is what libraries do - they allow you to travel geographically and across time. They open up the whole world. They are the next best thin
...more
Edward Sullivan
Who knew plant hunting could be such adventurous, danger-filled, fascinating work? A beautifully designed and illustrated book.
Lorna
Dec 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
This was engaging nonfiction and I can't wait to hear some kid reactions to it!
Msoneworld4me
Sep 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
How can we not know about the plant hunters? I very much enjoyed learning about some of the adventures these men and women faced as the discovered new plants.
Hank
Jan 17, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
I read this book with my 9-year old daughter. I think we both found the sections that discuss the amazing adventures of early plant hunters to be the best parts of the book. The first sentence sets the tone: "One got eaten by tigers in the Phillipines; one died of fever in Ecuador; one drowned in the Orinoco River; one fell to his death in Sierra Leone."

A reader will finish the book with admiration for the bravery of explorers including Alexander von Humboldt, Pierre Bonpland, Ynes Mexia, George
...more
Becky B
Mar 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
When I was teaching Biology, there was always a huge groan when I announced we were starting our unit on plants. The first question was always, "Why are we studying boring old plants?" I wish I had had this book back then, because it makes the "boring" plants suddenly very interesting and highlights their importance to humans. Ms Silvey tells how men (and a few women) were willing to face horrible weather, dangerous terrain, savage wild animals, and unfriendly natives to find "boring" old plants ...more
Brenda
Dec 29, 2012 rated it liked it
The Plant Hunters begins: "One got eaten by tigers in the Philippines: one died of fever in Ecuador: one drowned in the Orinoco River; one fell to his death in Sierra Leone. Another survived rheumatism, pleurisy and dysentery while sailing the Yangtze River in China, only to be murdered later. A few ended their days in lunatice asylums; many simply vanished into thin air." From that beginning you simply have to read why and how all those things could happen to people how love plants. Plants!? We ...more
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