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Joseph Hooker: Botanical Trailblazer

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Joseph Hooker: Botanical Trailblazer

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Joseph Hooker: Botanical Trailblazer is a compelling account of Joseph Hooker as a plant collector extraordinaire. Joseph Hooker was one of the creators of the modern scientist – medical graduate, botanist, plant collector and adventurer– who circled the globe, discovering, describing, naming or introducing over 12,000 plants that have changed the face of our gardens and landscape.

A confidante of Charles Darwin, he made his first plant collecting expedition to Antarctica in 1837, an epic undertaking that took him to the ends of the known world, collecting and identifying hundreds of plants. Following a major expedition to the Himalayas and India and the publication of his Himalayan Journals and Rhododendrons of Sikkim Himalaya, illustrated from Hooker’s own sketches by the botanical artist Walter Hood Fitch, Hooker’s reputation was assured. He was appointed Assistant Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew in 1855 and followed in his father’s footsteps as Director in 1865.
1877 saw Hooker’s great expedition to the Western United States, undertaken with his friend the leading American botanist Asa Gray, with Hooker eventually taking back over 1,000 specimens to Kew.

Extensively and beautifully illustrated from the archives of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Joseph Hooker: Botanical Trailblazer takes the reader on an extraordinary voyage with one of the world’s greatest botanists, highlighting his relationships with family, travelling companions, friends and colleagues who influenced his life and botanical ideas.
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