Welcome to the wonderful world of weedy plants!
Weeds are superevolutionary products of human civilizations and activities - without humans there would be no weeds, just wild plants.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Richard Mabey interview on NPR

British author Richard Mabey was interviewed by NPR about his new book and it was aired yesterday.  He has a refreshing take on weeds, or as NPR phrases it: "In Defense Of Botany's Cockroach".  I am not sure I would call weeds cockroaches at all, because first weeds do usually not live inside our houses, and second, do not usually run over our foods and clean counters and spread germs and disease.  Weeds are a lot better than cockroaches.  They are more interesting too, and I say this from personal experience after living in a cockroach infested apartment in the Bronx in the 1990s. (We had mice, bats, snakes and squirrels intermittently in the apartment too, but that is another story for another time).

"And while many might think of them as pests, British nature writer Richard Mabey prefers to think of them as "vegetable guerrillas" and "forest outlaws." Mabey's new book, Weeds: In Defense of Nature's Most Unloved Plants, is a spirited defense of weeds."

Read the interview, is is great.   Mabey also correctly points out that the most weedy species on earth is in fact, us humans:

"Weeds, as a type, are mobile, prolific, genetically diverse. They're unfussy about where they live, adapt quickly to environmental stress, use multiple strategies for getting their own way," Mabey writes in his book. "It's curious that it took us so long to realize that the species they most resemble is us."

No comments: