The author of 100 Flowers and How They Got Their Names now explores our deep-rooted relationship with trees in this beautifully illustrated book.
In Lives of Trees, gardening author Diana Wells reminds us of just how innately bound we are to trees. For as long as humans walked the earth, we have depended on them for food, shade, shelter, and fuel—not to mention furniture, musical instruments, medicine, utensils, and more.
Investigating the names and meanings of trees, Wells also uncovers their fascinating legends and lore: At one time, a worm found in a hazelnut meant ill fortune; Rowan trees were planted in churchyards to prevent the dead from rising from their graves; Greek arrows were soaked in deadly yew; and Shakespeare’s witches in Macbeth used “Gall of goat and slips of yew” to make their lethal brew. One bristlecone pine, at about forty-seven hundred years old, is thought to be the oldest living plant on earth. All this and more can be found in the beautifully illustrated pages (themselves born of birch bark!) of Lives of Trees.