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The Meaning Of Trees

4.79  ·  Rating details ·  42 ratings  ·  8 reviews
The history and use of New Zealand's native plants A guide and gift book in equal measure, this treasure of a book pays homage to New Zealand's native plant species.

The Meaning of Trees tells the story of plants and people in Aotearoa New Zealand. Beautifully illustrated with botanical drawings, paintings and photographs, it shows us how a globally unique flora has been us
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published April 17th 2019 by HarperCollins - NZ (first published 2019)
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I highly recommend "The Meaning of Trees". If you thought New Zealand's native plants were boring or less interesting than our birds and lizards, this book will show you otherwise! I was delighted to receive a review copy from the publishers. Here's my review.
The act of identifying and naming plants changes the way we see the bush. No longer is it a tangle of different greens, a confusing mass of different shape leaves. Bark, flowers, berries, leaves, all provide clues about the trees in the can
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully presented stories of New Zealand's native plants. This book was instantly engaging and will be read many times over- the best book I've read in a very long time. Highly recommend to any Kiwi or international readers interested in New Zealand and our natural world!! Stunning!!!! ...more
Jared Lanigan
Aug 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: green-books
A masterful telling of the traditional uses of New Zealand's natives and the way they defined early human settlement and continue to be used in medicine, cuisine and materials today. Rob Vennel's love of the bush oozes out of every exquisitely described plant as he weaves in the story of the Maori (then later, the colonial arrivals) and the plants they found on the newest oldest ecosystem on earth. I was surprised both by how much could be eaten and also how much should never be eaten. At least ...more
Sep 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
An excellent, and beautifully presented, coffee table book that explores a selection of Aotearoa New Zealand's native flora, discussing the roles of various plants and trees in mythology, food, medicine and culture. Good stuff that helps open the eyes with an increased sense of awareness of what's around us.

I think this is particularly salient for me since moving to Northland and buying a property that was probably once covered in kauri. It has plenty of exotics on it - a mini botanical garden i
Toni Duder
Mar 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An incredible love letter to our whenua and our native plants and trees. I learned so much as about the different ways Māori used the forests around them to enhance their way of life. Treating each tree/plant as though they are a friend, loved one or a quirky uncle, Vennell takes the reader through the history of each, detailing the things that set it apart and make it useful. I slowed down and created little flash cards for each, so I could remember some of the uses and history and take them wi ...more
Frances Arenhold
Alexandra Lutyens
Mar 14, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Such a beautiful book - well organised with exquisite illustrations. Something I'll treasure and refer back to. A keeper. ...more
Even when you think you know a lot about NZ plants, you can still learn more. Hope there is a sequel to this beautifully written book.
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