Art & Botanical Illustration | Writing

1981 first edition.  91 pages

Published by William Collins Publishers Ltd, New Zealand

Hardcover with dust jacket, Tan Boards.  Approx A4 size book.

Good condition.  Some edge wear, fading to dust jacket, minor foxing

Reflections on New Zealand Plants and Flowers.  Paintings by Elaine Power.

Sunday meant a ramble along the Wellington hills with Father.  To the little girl eagerly listening at his side, his talk of native plants and their habits were fascinating, his stories of old Maori deeds and customs enthralling.  Week by week they would stop at a particular tree fern to note the slow unfurling of one of its fronds.  As this opened out to vigorous maturity, so did little Muriel Hunt's love of studying and growing New Zealand's native plants develop into a lifelong passion.

A Touch of Nature is an expression of that love and dedication.  Its author uncovers for us the treasures of the summer alpine fields and shingle fans, focuses our attention on shy species from the silent swamps and deep forests, shares with us all her favourites from a lifetime of wilderness observation and successful cultivation at home.

Along the way she offers many a curious sidelight on the usage of these plants by the ancient Maori and the early Pakeha colonists.

Muriel Fisher describes, too, how she and her husband have, over the years, created in an Auckland suburb a spacious garden devoted to the culture of plants great and small from every corner of New Zealand and its associated islands.

This book, like the garden which partly inspired it, is a revelation of the beauty of our indigenous flora.  The joys of these pages are enhanced by Elanie Power's exquisite paintings, which provide a beautiful accompaniment to the narrative.

Together, the words and pictures form an inspired and affectionate tribute to the unique plants, shrubs and trees Nature has bequeathed to New Zealand.

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