582: Florida Wildflowers by Walter K. Taylor

by Gerard


582.1309759: Taylor, Walter Kinglsey. Florida Wildflowers: A Comprehensive Guide. Gainesville, FL: University of Florida Press, 2013. 576 pp. ISBN 978-0-8130-4425-5.

Dewey Breakdown:

  • 500: Pure Science
  • 580: Plants (Botany)
  • 582: Plants noted for specific vegetative characteristics and flowers
  • 582.1: Herbaceous and woody plants, plants noted for their flowers
  • 582.13: Plants noted for their flowers
  • +09759: North America—United States—Florida

This is a simple book with a lot of information. For the first time in more than a decade, a single botanist has gathered photographs and detailed all the different species of wildflowers in the state of Florida. University of Central Florida biology professor Walter Kingsley Taylor offers, in his Florida Wildflowers, a useful guide to the Sunshine State’s flowering, native beauty.

The first 75 pages of this book are devoted to detailing what kind of environments are contained in Florida. He explains the differences between the many types of forests as well as a discussion on the different kinds of swamps and marshes. This is important because certain wildflowers are only found in certain domains. The rest of book then comprises plate after plate of plant images, showing each specimen in its natural environment. The reader should easily be able to tell their partridgeberry from their palafoxes, their lopseed from their laurelcherry, and their sandweed from their snoutbeans (as a side note, the names of these plants are just as fascinating as the images).

Professor Taylor’s book is as concise as one can be when describing the myriad plant species native to a state. It is organized a pretty helpful way: plants are grouped in the area on might find them in the state, so that the casual enthusiast might not only be able to identify what’s in front of them but also easily note all the other plants in the area as well. This makes the book useful for both the amateur as well as the professional (although one might gather that the professional wouldn’t need a book at all). I can’t say that this book is entertaining or linguistically inventive, but it gets the job done. A colorful and educational book.