Wicked Plants

Wicked Plants

The Weed That Killed Lincoln's Mother and Other Botanical Atrocities

Book - 2009
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A tree that sheds poison daggers; a glistening red seed that stops the heart; a shrub that causes paralysis; a vine that strangles; and a leaf that triggered a war. In Wicked Plants , Stewart takes on over two hundred of Mother Nature's most appalling creations. It's an A to Z of plants that kill, maim, intoxicate, and otherwise offend. You'll learn which plants to avoid (like exploding shrubs), which plants make themselves exceedingly unwelcome (like the vine that ate the South), and which ones have been killing for centuries (like the weed that killed Abraham Lincoln's mother).

Publisher: Chapel Hill, N.C. : Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, c2009.
ISBN: 9781565126831
Characteristics: 235 p. :,ill. ;,19 cm.
Additional Contributors: Morrow-Cribbs, Briony
Rosen, Jonathon

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Kristen MERKE
Apr 25, 2019

I guess I enjoyed this book overall; but it wasn't what I expected. I was hoping for more narrative non-fiction about plants who'd killed people (based on subtitle I gathered this impression). Instead it was some narrative and mostly just facts about the plants. Which is fine and I learned a thing or two, but it started to feel repetitive and I got tired of just reading symptoms of plant ingestion. I also wish there had been color photos of the plants, I found myself doing a lot of googling to see images of the plant in question. I don't think this is a bad book, per say but it's more of a general knowledge reference guide. If you know nothing about plants I suppose this is an okay start.

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angelamuliu
Jan 14, 2018

I took a look at this book after liking another of the author's writing, "Drunken Botanist." For whatever reason, I got much less enjoyment from this one, becoming thoroughly bored a third in. It's not to say the book isn't interesting - the stories peppered throughout are certainly entertaining. But after reading section after section of another plant with (surprise!) some deadly stories and symptoms, the formula got stale.

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MarieGaffney
Sep 12, 2013

i had checked this book out to get some ideas on how to keep flys and mosquitos out of the house without at the same time poisoning my cats (this is almost impossible!) but was definitely offset by the horror of how easy it would be to poison oneself when attempting natural methods of bug repelling. It would be a good book for one writing on murder mystery as it does cover far more than a couple of plants, even categorizing and separating the illegal from the deadly, etc . . .

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1tarheel
Sep 09, 2013

Curious. Both informative and repetitive. NOT a plant guide.

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ufozoey
Jul 03, 2013

Absolutely wonderful! A fast read and very informative.

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MistyBlue22
Jun 05, 2013

Never knew celery could be bad for your health! This is a good guide to the 'crime makers' of the plant kingdom, well worth the read!

Library_Dragon Mar 26, 2013

A fun and very readable guide to the nastier side of the plant kingdom.

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GingerKaren
May 22, 2012

Most of the time, we think of plants as being pretty green things that ocassionally flower. This book shares the dark side of these quiet but often deadly organisms that share our planet. And how often they inflict their revenge on the feet that trample them! So don't forget to water your housemates, or they may get back at you in ways you never realized.

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Suamena
Jan 11, 2012

Good as a reference book, but not for general reading.

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Pandaluver97
Sep 11, 2010

it's amazing to learn how many ways you can die from an everyday plant.

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Kristen MERKE
Apr 25, 2019

Kristen MERKE thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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mswendybe
Jun 21, 2013

Menacing botanical illustrations render a ghastly portrait of evildoers that may be lurking in your own backyard. Drawing on history, medicine, science, and legend, this compendium of bloodcurdling botany will entertain, enlighten, and alarm even the most intrepid gardeners and nature lovers.

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