American Chestnut The Life, Death, and Rebirth of a Perfect Tree
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The American chestnut was one of America's most common, valued, and beloved trees--a "perfect tree" that ruled the forests from Georgia to Maine. But in the early twentieth century, an exotic plague swept through the chestnut forests with the force of a wildfire. Within forty years, the blight had killed close to four billion trees and left the species teetering on the brink of extinction. It was one of the worst ecological blows to North America since the Ice Age--and one most experts considered beyond repair. InAmerican Chestnut,Susan Freinkel tells the dramatic story of the stubborn optimists who refused to let this cultural icon go. In a compelling weave of history, science, and personal observation, she relates their quest to save the tree through methods that ranged from classical plant breeding to cutting-edge gene technology. But the heart of her story is the cast of unconventional characters who have fought for the tree for a century, undeterred by setbacks or skeptics, fueled by their dreams of restored forests and a powerful affinity for a fellow species. Their inspiring efforts offer hope and lessons for an era in which another plant or animal species passes into oblivion every twenty minutes.
List price: $85.00
Copyright year: 2007
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 11/19/2007
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.50" long x 1.25" tall
|Map of American chestnut distribution in 1938|
|Where There Are Chestnuts|
|A New Scourge|
|Let Us Not Talk about Impossibilities|
|A Whole World Dying|
|Rolling the Dice|
|Evil Tendencies Cancel|
|Let Us Plant|
|Faith in a Seed|
|Conclusion: the comeback|