Hanson, Thor

From our morning toast to the cotton in our clothes, seeds are quite literally the stuff and staff of life, supporting diets, economies, and civilizations around the globe. Just as the search for nutmeg and the humble peppercorn drove the Age of Discovery, so did coffee beans help fuel the Enlightenment, and cottonseed help spark the Industrial Revolution. And from the Fall of Rome to the Arab Spring, the fate of nations continues to hinge on the seeds of a Middle Eastern grass known as wheat. In nature and in culture, seeds are fundamental–objects of beauty, evolutionary wonder, and simple fascination.
Spanning the globe from the Raccoon Shack – Hanson’s backyard writing hideout-cum-laboratory – to the coffee shops of Seattle, from gardens and flower patches to the spice routes of Kerala, this is a book of knowledge, adventure, and wonder, spun by an award-winning writer with both the charm of a fireside story-teller and the hard-won expertise of a field biologist. A fascinating scientific adventure through the wild and beautiful world of seeds, this book is essential reading for anyone who loves to see a plant grow.

In stock


Basic Books, 2015.  277 pages, hardcover, dustwrapper, black and white photographs and illustrations.

Additional information

Weight 410 g