With such willing customers, it's no wonder that a thriving black market now exists. To serve it, orchids are taken illegally from sensitive ecological areas in places like Thailand, Borneo, and darkest Minnesota. In scenes reminiscent of Susan Orlean's The Orchid Thief, Hansen follows the trail of orchid smugglers, pursuing money and plants in a whodunit tale that involves botanical gardens, scholars, scientists, ordinary enthusiasts, and "plant cops"--international eco-police whose job it is to stop the traffic in rare and often endangered plants. Those vigilantes have their work cut out for them, Hansen writes, especially because some of the current laws may be misguided, causing more harm than good and equating honest breeders with botanical desperadoes. The laws are bound to fail in any event, he suggests, if only because the plant trade, like that of the drug trade, is simply too big to curtail.
Orchid enthusiasts and admirers of good journalism alike will find plenty of interest in Hansen's vivid, richly anecdotal investigation. --Gregory McNamee --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
I have read Eric Hansen's Traveling with Mohammed and Stranger in the Forest with much satisfaction.
I highly recommend his book to anyone who has ever been the slightest bit intrigued by the mystery and beauty of orchids.
I thought I had been cured of my orchid fever, but reading this book just brought it back after 20 years in remission.
Disappointed. Shallow. Hoped for more. Should've put my $ in an orchid plant!Published 23 days ago by Sandra L. Larsen
What a strange group of people, a strange group of laws and regs, power plays, egos, one-upmanships, guns, raids, out and out BS. It's Great! :)Published 4 months ago by Jim Moore
There is horticultural history involving orchids that is not widely known. Learn how laws have been passed concerning these beautiful plants as well as stories of avid world wide... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Polly's Daughter
Wonderful book. Loving and humorous look at the characters and international regulations that inhabit the world of orchids. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Chris Fitch
I read this book years ago and really loved it. I've given it as a gift as well, to someone who has recently gotten into raising orchids. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Shilo
I finally got around to reading Orchid Fever. It's one of those really rare books; when I finished it, I immediately started reading it again. Read more
This book is not natural history, but a story the struggle of individual orchid lovers and growers against the surprising dishonesty, callousness, and self-serving behavior of top... Read morePublished 19 months ago by lone*150
i thought it would be similar to the fruit hunters, which i adore, but alas, i could not even finish it. there was too little substance and too much fluffPublished 20 months ago by Connie Galvin
I have in general been a great fan of Hansen's, and his book in particular about Borneo was a jewel. "Orchid Fever" trivializes almost every issue and individual that it touches. Read morePublished on June 12, 2012 by Schmendrick