- Gebundene Ausgabe: 192 Seiten
- Verlag: Greystone Books; Auflage: First Printing (16. September 2004)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 1553650166
- ISBN-13: 978-1553650164
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 19,6 x 14,4 x 1,9 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 2 Kundenrezensionen
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 91.275 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
Tree: A Life Story (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 16. September 2004
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Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
Wayne Grady has translated eight novels and edited six anthologies of short stories. He won the Governor General's Award for his translation of On the Eighth Day by Antonine Maillet and was nominated for the 2005 Governor General's Award for his translation of Francine D'Amour's Return from Africa. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch.
Die Sprache ist ebenfalls sehr schön, sehr bildhaft, aber ohne jemals ins Kitschig-Sentimentale abzugleiten; dennoch wird dieser Baum im Verlauf des Buches zu einer Persönlichkeit, die die Sympathie und das Interesse des Lesers auf sich zieht..Alleine schon, dadurch, dass er als Teil eines lebendigen, miteinander verwobenen Ganzen aufgezeigt wird, macht das Buch zu einer hervorragenden Einführung in die Ökologie - ohne ein Lehrbuch zu sein.
The one tree they've chosen, a Douglas-fir, started long ago, in the age of Edward I of England. The authors give an account of how a Douglas-fir is kick-started by a forest fire. That inferno we all dread is the Douglas-fir's cradle. To massive trees seeking the sun, along with many other species, the removal of the forest canopy grants fresh sunlight and nutrients in the ash that would be otherwise unobtainable. Once growth begins, the young tree sprouts roots into the soil and shoots into the air. Encountering a growing tree, we tend to see it as isolated. Grady and Suzuki quickly disabuse us of that mistake. Trees quickly enter relationships - some with others of their own kind, but also with different species. Fungi, in particular, play a vital role in a tree's life almost from the outset. The fungi bring water and nutrients to the tree, gaining sugars that are the product of photosynthesis. This relationship extends the tree's influence over a vast area. There is also chemical communication with other trees - even those of different species - calling for help or offering information about tree predators.
During the tree's mature years, the old associations are strengthened, and new ones established.Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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This easy-to-read book, by zoologist, geneticist, environmentalist, TV host, & author David Suzuki and author & translator Wayne Grady is advertised to be a biography of one tree, a Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziessi). This story connects us to other times in history and to all parts of the world. However, this story can be thought of as the story of all trees as well as all life throughout Earth.
This book explores the many mechanisms by which the tree is able to thrive for centuries while remaining rooted in one spot. It also looks at the tree's complex relationships with other organisms in its community, from such things as lichens, ferns, mosses, and fungi to other trees to such things as woodpeckers, squirrels, owls, cougars, bears, termites, ants, salamanders, and salmon. In addition, this book shows how a tree connects us to the atmosphere, the soil, and the world's oceans, as well as linking us all the way back to the universe's origins.
Examples of other topics covered include the history of botany, insect, bird, and mammal portraits, genetics, anatomy, nomenclature and taxonomy, climate, chemistry, biochemistry, and environmental issues. The amazing thing about this book is that these topics and others are combined in such a way as to make the main narrative extremely interesting and never dull. The authors say this more eloquently: "In this book, we have tried to restore a layperson's sense of wonder and questioning and added the kind of information acquired by scientists."
I was surprised to learn that "after millennia of study, there is still much about a tree we do not know." This book definitely tells the reader what is known not only about a tree but about life as well.
Finally, there are over a dozen black and white illustrations in this book. They were created by internationally known wildlife artist Robert Bateman. These illustrations add another dimension to this book.
In conclusion, this is a book that has richly detailed text that's augmented by evocative original art. The final result "is a revelation, a salute to life itself."
(first published 2004; acknowledgements; introduction; 5 chapters; main narrative 180 pages; references; index)
At one of the visitor centers on the road up to Mt. St. Helens there is a museum operated by one of the big logging companies. To no surprise they are talking about how much better their forests are under their careful management practices. And at a first glance, this makes sense. The trees are bigger, straighter. But where is the ecological balance, the bio-diversity - it's gone.
Like anything else, there are two sides to a story. We want wood for the next house we build. And it has to come from somewhere. But after reading this book, you'll never think of a tree in the same light.
regarding Kimberly-Clark's indiscriminate use of old growth
forests to produce Kleenex tissues I finished reading "Tree:
A Life Story," a new book by acclaimed geneticist and
environmentalist Dr. David Suzuki, and nature writer Wayne
Grady. The book focuses on the life of a Douglas-fir, to
illustrate plant evolution, biology, and the interdependence
of organisms. Throughout the chronological account of the
tree's life, the authors interweave short biographies of
noted botanists and their historical roles in helping us to
further understand and appreciate life and death in the
forest. The book is also interspersed with drawings by
well-known nature artist, Robert Bateman.
The authors allude to the story of Genesis to depict the
first days of life: "In the beginning," early forms of
bacteria, and algae gradually made their move from the ocean
to land's rocky surface. These life forms evolved into
mosses and then into plants such as ferns. Competition for
sunlight caused these ferns to thicken their stems and grow
taller; these plants evolved into trees.
Our main character is born around 1400, into favorable
conditions created by a recent all-consuming fire. Through
the tree's 500 year lifespan, we gain further insight into
scientific concepts presented in earlier chapters. We learn
that various fungi, which grow on the tree's roots, are
capable of extracting a thousand times more water from the
soil than the root itself. The fungi supply the tree with
nutrients and water and, in turn, receive sugars produced
through photosynthesis (the process whereby light energy is
used to transform carbon into nutrients) in the tree's
canopy. This is just one example of many where the
interdependence of organisms is illustrated.
The authors expand on the theory that a tree is forever
"part dying and part being born," which was originally
stated by Theophrastus, otherwise known as the "father of
botany." A student of Plato and Aristotle's, and one of the
first field scientists to present extensive data on plants,
Theophrastuses theory is illustrated in the following ways:
our tree's core is made of dead wood; over the years, new
layers of wood will grow around the "heartwood" core. When
our Douglas-fir finally dies, it stands as a "snag" for
about 60 years and becomes home for a range of species, such
as flying squirrels and spotted owls. In the end, when the
trunk falls to the forest floor, it serves as a nursery for
seedlings; even in death, it possesses life-sustaining
A true testament to the book's overall success is that the
lyrical way in which the science was conveyed whetted my
appetite to revisit "Tree," in order to fully absorb all of
its vital information. At times, however, the abundance of
technical terms slowed my reading pace considerably. A short
glossary would help the scientifically unfamiliar reader to
carry concepts and terms from chapter to chapter.
It's no accident that the authors chose a Douglas-fir -the
most important old growth species in the forest industry
today- as their main character. Though several lines
protesting the industry's indiscriminate harvesting of these
trees are present, they are never preachy. The book relies,
instead, on supported evidence of how life depends on life,
and that blind destruction of such forests will eventually
lead to our own demise. On a personal note, I'm grateful to
the authors for providing me with the scientific knowledge
and the emotional charge needed to write my letter to the
Kimberly Clark Corporation.
Dan Goldman, Reviewer For Bookpleasures
The book, however, contains so many factual and conceptual errors about plant biology, that its credibility was ruined for me. I know plants, and so when I encounter so many glaring errors and misconceptions in a subject that I know, how can I trust the authors' facts in other fields that I don't know? Well, I cannot.
The authors, editors and publishers should have had the text reviewed by somebody with knowledge of the topic. I can't blame Suzuki - a fruit fly geneticist by training - for not knowing all the details of how plants carry on their daily life, but I do blame him for not checking his facts. It's really embarrassing. Some examples of the errors in the book: that plant roots bend downwards because auxin falls to the lower part of the root by its own weight; that auxin cuts the bonds in cellulose; that cellulose is made up of glucose and fructose; that starch moves from the leaves to the roots - these are just a few of the crazy concepts stated as facts in the book. Where did Suzuki find these crazy ideas? Not in any authoritative textbook written in the last half century!
I like to cook and I've learned the hard way that hours of effort can be ruined by adding one incompatible ingredient to the recipe. In a book about science and nature, facts are the ingredients, and if you get those wrong, there's no rescuing the dish. It goes in the trash bin.