cloth, 384 pp., $40.00
In Ginkgo: The Tree That Time Forgot, Peter Crane recalls the history and importance of one the world’s most unique trees, the ginkgo. Unchanged for 200 million years, it has “one of the longest botanical pedigrees.” Former director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, the author first tells of his enchantment with an honored ginkgo, planted in the eighteenth century at that site, and then proceeds to reminiscence about its origins and ancestry. He traces this durable species and its existence as both a living plant and as fossil remains around the world, noting its persistence as a relic in evolution. This fascinating biography of a single species without any close relatives is a surprisingly lively and absorbing story in the hands of such a learned scholar and world traveler.
— Marilyn K. Alaimo, garden writer and volunteer, Chicago Botanic Garden