The 121 plates in this handsome revised, expanded edition of the 1968 classic, Wildflowers of Greece, come with a wealth of information from the artist and her colleagues at the Goulandris Natural History Museum.
The illustrations, drawn from life, capture the intricate beauty of the plants, a representative sample of the 5,800 wildflowers that flourish in Greece, of which 750 are endemic.
Botanist Arne Strid’s introduction explains how geology and climate helped engender this extraordinary biodiversity. Strid and Kit Tan, both honorary curators of the museum, wrote the captions that explain the origin, flowering season, habitat, and etymology of each plant, together with snippets of the myths and legend that are associated with them. St John’s wort, the common name of the Hypericum species, derives from an ancient feast on 24 June, later the feast day of John the Baptist, where plants were placed above images to ward off evil. (Ithaca Online, www.ekebi.gr).