The Eucalyptus: A Natural and Commercial History of the Gum Tree (Center Books in Natural History)
|Rating||:||4.61 (565 Votes)|
|Number of Pages||:||256 Pages|
"A well-referenced case study in environmental history." -- Paul Brassley, Journal of Agricultural Economics"An important and highly informative book on an instantly recognisable group of species that are now widespread and of great commercial importance." -- Ian Brooker, Curtis's Botanical Magazine
David Owens said Pretty dull. This is a scholarly tome and was dry reading. Some interesting facts about early planting of eucalypts in countries other than Australia, but that's about it. I was really looking for a handbook on identifcation, but those are fairly hard to find.
For others, eucalypts are a blight upon native landscapes and the livelihoods of indigenous people. Doughty, one of the world's leading biogeographers, discusses various reasons for the tree's popularity throughout history, ranging from the merely aesthetic, to its purported malaria-countering character in swamps and bogs, to its ability to adapt and mature quickly as a source of timber and firewood--a fact which especially appealed to railroad companies in the nineteenth century. Turning to the last half of the twentieth century, Doughty raises important environmental, socioeconomic, and political issues surrounding the eucalypt. This book tells the story of how the eucalyptus--or "gum tree"--spread from its native ranges in Australia to diverse habitats throughout the world. For some, eucalypts are the tree of the future: easily established, quick to grow, and intensively cultivated. In developing nations in Latin America and Asia, for example, the accelerated establishment of eucalyptus plantations has led to a heated debate about their impact upon the environment and about
Doughty is a professor of geography at the University of Texas at Austin.. Robin W