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Alpine Plants of the Northwest: Wyoming to Alaska

Jim Pojar and Andy MacKinnon, with Rosamund Pojur, Curtis Björk, and Hans Roemer
Lone Pine Publishing
Publication Date: 
ISBN 978-1-551-05892-4

Flexible boards, 527 pp., $29.95.

The mountainous areas from treeline to the summit of a high peak contain some of the most beautiful flowering plants in North America. This handy guide is packed full of information about these alpine plants. It provides the reader with plant descriptions and essays about the traditional uses of these cherished species and the First Nations people who used them. However, the authors caution that it is not a regional guide to those plants used for food. The handbook is organized by species with similar characteristics, so that the reader can more quickly identify differences. Just as fascinating as the directory of plants, which include trees, shrubs, wildflowers, grasses, sedges, rushes, ferns, and their allies, are the descriptions of the alpine environment and the breathtaking landscapes. Although photographic records are somewhat small, the work deserves praise for its extensive documentation of 2,000 color photos, line drawings, and maps of specimens situated at some of the most challenging habitats in North America. —Marilyn K. Alaimo, garden writer and volunteer, Chicago Botanic Garden.