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NEA Big Read: Explore the plant world with these titles!

February 10, 2021 at 8:43 AM by

Do you love plants or spend a lot of time outdoors exploring the natural world?
Give yourself new eyes to see that world and dive even further into the plant and nature aspects of Lab Girl with these read-alikes. 
Interested in learning more about the 2021 NEA Big Read? Click Here!

What a plant knows : a field guide to the senses-David Chamovitz

I'll admit I have killed my fair share of houseplants, then I read this book and after I felt awful about the conditions I was giving those poor plants, I changed my care routine. This book offers a glimpse into what a plant sees, hears, smells, tastes and feels. You will never look at a plant, flower or tree the same way after reading this.

Wicked plants : the weed that killed Lincoln's mother and other botanical atrocities-Amy Stewart

This book is so beautifully illustrated and it packs a mean punch with its information. I love food, potatoes in any form is very nostalgic for me. This book taught me that my beloved potatoes have the ability to kill. Being a member of the nightshade family, they contain a poison that is usually killed during the cooking process. Basically, never eat a raw green potato and read this book to learn more about the world’s most deadly and dangerous plants.
Also available on Hoopla.

Root, nurture, grow : the essential guide to propagating and sharing houseplants-Rose Ray, Caro Langton

Are you a proud plant parent? Are you slightly curious about dipping your toe into plant life? If one of these applies to you, read this book immediately. It is full of information about how to propagate or grow a new plant from a cutting, stem or even a leaf. I have successfully grown so many plant babies for friends and family because of this book. Learn how to mix soil for specific plant needs, common pest problems and solutions and if that’s not enough, there are a bunch of really fun plant crafts included in some of the chapters.

How to read nature : awaken your senses to the outdoors you've never noticed-Tristan Gooley

I recommend this book all the time as a staff pick, I think everyone should read it.  It encourages the reader to slow down, breathe, and look around to take in the beauty and tools nature provides for us. This book will change the way you interact with nature, even if it is just within a short walk around your neighborhood.
Also available on Hoopla.

Gathering moss : a natural and cultural history of mosses-Robin Wall Kimmimer

A book about moss is probably incredibly text heavy and *gasp* boring, right? WRONG! This essay collection is short and sweet, coming in at 168 pages. It has a perfect mix of scientific information weaved with wonderful storytelling.
Also available on Hoopla.

Braiding Sweetgrass-Robin Wall Kimmimer

This book stuck with me, it really got me thinking about our relationship and reliance on the earth. The way Robin Wall Kimmimer writes is poetic and beautiful, I wish I could read it again for the first time. We can all learn from her message of caring, restoring and showing gratitude to the earth.
Also available on Hoopla.

Entangled Life: How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds & Shape Our Futures-Merlin Sheldrake

When I was younger, I used to spend most of my free time out in the woods, I have always had a fascination with lichen ( a symbiotic partnership of alga and fungus). When I heard about this book, I knew I had to read it. Fungi goes way beyond the mushroom and this book is a wonderful look at what it does for us and our world.

The hidden life of trees : what they feel, how they communicate - discoveries from a secret world- Peter Wohlleben

If you are like me, the kind of person that loves being in the forest, you’ll love this book. I especially enjoyed hearing about the different personalities the different species have and how they communicate with each other. 
Also available on Hoopla.



If none of the titles listed above caught your eye, check one of these out:

Seeds of Hope: Wisdom and Wonder from the World of Plants-Jane Goodall and Gail Hudson

The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt's New World-Andrea Wulf 
Also available on Hoopla.

The reason for flowers : their history, culture, biology, and how they change our lives-Stephen Buchmann
Also available on Hoopla.

A garden of marvels : how we discovered that flowers have sex, leaves eat air, and other secrets of plants-Ruth Kassinger
Also available on Hoopla.

The cabaret of plants : forty thousand years of plant life and the human imagination-Richard Mabey
Also available on Hoopla.

The forest unseen : a year's watch in nature-David George Haskell
Also available on Hoopla.

Seeing trees : discover the extraordinary secrets of everyday trees-Nancy R. Hugo

The tree : a natural history of what trees are, how they live, and why they matter- Colin Tudge

Chrysalis: Maria Sibylla Merian and the Secrets of Metamorphosis-Kim Todd
Also available on Hoopla.


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