Seed to Seed: The Secret Life of Plants by Nicholas Harberd

Book Cover Seed to Seed: The Secret Life of Plants, Nicholas Harberd (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2007)

Seed to Seed is part field notebook, part sketchbook and part diary. Built upon a narrative of the passing seasons of 2004, it relates that narrative to the life history of an ‘iconic’ plant. It gives a description of what is ‘seen’ and of the hidden molecular mechanisms that underlie the visible events in the plant’s life, and tells the story of the last ten years of scientific discoveries in Nicholas Harberd’s own laboratory as the team works on decoding the genome of a basic plant, thale cress – the fruit-fly of the plant world.
This is a book for the general reader written by a scientist, passionate about his subject, who decided to get out into the open air and use the discoveries of the laboratory to explain the secret workings of the natural world.

Set in the Norfolk country-side, with journeys to places as far away as New Zealand, Mallorca, Ireland and California, it is beautifully illustrated with more than forty sketches and diagrams, and gives a wonderfully open portrait of the scientific mind at work.

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