Zoologist Heinrich (A Year in the Maine Woods, LJ 10/1/94) lives in a 300-acre Vermont forest, of which he intended to sell parcels when he bought it 20 years ago. Instead he found his old interest in forestry reawakened, and he renewed his lifelong love affair with trees. Lucky for readers that he did?this book is a gentle reminder of the grand adventure in nature, not just in exotic locales. Heinrich creates detailed portraits of his forest's life, from sex among the trees to ants herding aphids to a history of the majestic white pine, giving readers the full view of life in a healthy forest ecosystem. Heinrich has the ability to engage the reader instantly and to transform common settings into meaningful and educational experiences. Highly recommended for all natural history collections.?Randy Dykhuis, Michigan Lib. Consortium, Lansing
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This lyrical testament to the stunning complexity of the natural world also documents one man's bid to make a difference on his own little patch of land. Heinrich (One Man's Owl, 1987, etc.) bought 300 acres of logged-over Maine woods in 1975 and set out to restore its ecological diversity. A professor of biology at the University of Vermont, he uses the farm as retreat, classroom, and research lab. Heinrich is a detective in the woods. He infers from the presence of pin cherries the location of old pastures and dates a 19th- century forest fire by examining growth rings and charcoal deposits. His scientific method is wide-ranging and inclusive, drawing on engineering, mathematics, zoology, biochemistry, forestry, and economics, encompassing both micro and macro views. For the former he scrutinizes saplings under a microscope and details the biochemical process by which trees manufacture wood. The big picture spurs musings on the vast interconnectedness of nature as he traces the mind-bogglingly complicated symbiotic relationships among plants, animals, and natural forces like wind and sunlight. Heinrich uses simple sketches to illustrate his explanations of the ingenious design, growth strategies, and reproductive methods employed by trees in their quest for survival. In his ultimate goal of creating a forest, a place of ``habitat complexity'' vastly different from the sterile monocultures planted by paper companies in the name of sustainable forestry, he succeeds admirably. It's a pleasant surprise, then, to learn that in the end Heinrich does well by doing good: Not only is he rewarded with a diverse plant and wildlife population, he also reaps a cash profit from responsible logging. Heinrich tells us more about trees than we'd ever dream of wondering, yet manages to transform the esoterica into a fascinating tribute to nature's superior design. -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Editorial Reviews
Bernd Heinrich is a master of beautiful science---he brings his subjects alive through his knowledge, experience, and glorious prose!Published 4 months ago by Rebecca Richard
I have read nearly all of Mr. Heinrich's books and have enjoyed them all. I really didn't think a book on trees would be that interesting, but I was wrong. Read morePublished 4 months ago by jcw
A very enjoyable book, and really sparked my interest in the white pine and the ecology of New England forests.Published 15 months ago by nownow