GARDEN ISLANDS OF THE GREAT EAST by David Fairchild

GARDEN ISLANDS OF THE GREAT EAST

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The author of The World Was My Garden and Exploring for Plants tells of the 1940 expedition to the Malay Archipelago for new plants to add to the Fairchild Tropical Garden in Florida. A Chinese junk, equipped with a Diesel engine, was their home. He traces the events that led up to the departure, the trip via Japan and China to the Philippines, his long dreamed of explorations in the Moluccas, curtailed by news of the invasion of Holland. This is the history of living plants, seeds and seedlings which became immigrants to the United States. Here is an enthusiastic and expert account of the delights and failures of the trip, of souvenirs, of horticulture, of interviews and encounters, of tropic jungle, forest and highland, with many an entertaining interpolation on weeds, food prejudices, people, etc. There are discussions of the potentialities of these new importations, the characters of the plants and the uses to which they may be put. There are small adventures as they cruised about the islands, particularly when they were trying to evade officialdom after they had been ordered to return home. There are records of the many laboratories and experimental stations visited, the foreign and native settlements observed. It is specialized, yes, but the author's contagious concentrations on his job adds enough East to the telling to make it good reading.

Publisher: Scribner