paper, 305 pp., $70.00
Addressing the importance of grasslands on the planet, educator David Gibson directs the reader’s attention to the size and the widespread plant species in this vital biome. Written as an introduction to the subject for graduate students and professional researchers in related fields, the work examines what makes up a “grassland” and the extent of grasslands across the world’s surface. The text also considers the use of grasslands for crops and as rangeland for animals, prior to studying plant morphology and other technical subjects. The author focuses attention on grassland ecology from several perspectives, from population dynamics to world status. Those charged with the management of grasslands will find the topics of management techniques and restoration of particular interest. Well-referenced, this publication’s supplementary materials include listings of plants and animals regularly found in this ecosystem.
— Marilyn K. Alaimo, garden writer and volunteer, Chicago Botanic Garden