The Illustrated Dictionary of Southern African Plant Names is aimed at keen gardeners, plant collectors, amateur and professional botanists, academics, and many other people who wish to have an answer to the question: “What do generic plant names mean?”
Without a reference book to guide you, the generic names are simply unexplained ‘names’ because they are written in botanical Latin which few people understand.
This easy-to-use dictionary enables readers to find out how plants have got their names. It provides a wealth of information that opens up a new world of understanding for all plant lovers. The book has nearly 5 000 entries and will include approximately 400 beautiful full-colour photographs of plants taken by top botanical photographers. This not only gives life to the book but in many cases illustrates how these names relate to the plant. Pictures have been selected from the various regions of southern African and 24 of South Africa’s leading botanists contributed to this choice with an opening page (from A–Z).
Readers who wish to know more about the lives of those individuals after whom plants were named such as Watsonia, Welwitschia and hundreds more, will be surprised but delighted to find this dictionary contains more than 900 short biographies together with some 600 images, thus conserving southern African botanical history. There are fascinating descriptions of these individuals’ contributions to science, their explorations, their achievements and tragedies.
The book also provides information for those readers who want to know more about the genus, such as whether the genus is an invasive species or whether the genus name has been superseded and what the replacement name is.