This book accompanies the landmark television series Kingdom of Plants 3D: With David Attenborough.
In the last 500 million years, plants have undertaken an epic journey that has not only spanned the ages but has altered the very make-up of the planet. It was a journey that began in a dark and barren world, and has culminated in a planet that is draped in rich colours, and overflowing with a diversity of mystifying orchids, exploding seed pods and snapping carnivorous plants.
But plants are far more than just beautiful and bizarre. Through the chapters of this book we uncover how plants first began to live on land, how they have become linked with a multitude of animal and fungi partners, and how ultimately they have shaped both landscapes and cultures.
With an introduction by Professor Stephen Hopper, Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, as well as contributions from leading botanists and horticulturists, this book unpicks the strands of our planet’s network of botanical life. Through its pages we reveal the extraordinary ways in which plants have come to live and thrive in all habitats, and we discover how they can provide us with answers to many of the problems that face humanity in our modern age.
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‘In a text that couples strong narrative with the latest scientific insights, Will Benson has produced an engrossing account of the evolution of plant life and its importance to our planet’s past, present and future. He takes us on a beautifully illustrated, three-billion-year journey […]. The companion to Sir David Attenborough’s new TV series on plants demands to be read.’
About the author
Will Benson is a science researcher who has worked alongside leading academics in the production of television documentaries for major broadcasters around the world, including most recently the landmark series Kingdom of Plants 3D: With David Attenborough. An early interest in plants led him to work as a horticulturist, after which he went on to study for a BSc in Zoology at the University of Southampton. Will has led and participated in a number of biological research expeditions, working both independently and with NGOs in Nicaragua, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.