Weeds

Weeds: In Defense of Nature's Most Unloved Plants

 

--Richard Mabey
 
Take away: what is the weed plant, how does it grow, why is it regarded as trouble. 

Weeds occur when the wild crashes our tidy compartmentalization.

"Plants become weeds because people label them as such." (p.21)

"Weeds vividly demonstrate that natural life - and the course of evolution itself - refuse to be constrained by our cultural concepts.

Favourite lines

"Plants become weeds when they obstruct our plans, or our tidy maps of the world." (page 1)

"The definition is the weed's cultural story. How and why and where we classify plants as undesirable is part of the story of our ceaseless attempts to draw boundaries between nature and culture, wildness and domestication." (page 5)

"...I suggested that weeds were a consequence of our rigid separation of the natural world into the wild and the domestic. They are the boundary breakers, the stateless minority, who remind us that the life is not that tidy. They help us learn to live across nature's borderlines again." (page 291)

 

Weeds: In Defense of Nature's Most Unloved Plants

by Richard Mabey

HarperCollins | June 26, 2012 | Trade Paperback