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Supplement to Eagle's Complete Trees and Shrubs of New ZealandBOOK REVIEWS

Supplement to Eagle's Complete Trees and Shrubs of New Zealand:
Additional notes

Published by the Botanical Society of Otago, Dunedin
Paperback, 114 pages, 205 290mm, NZ, 2006
ISBN-10: 0-473-11727-4
ISBN-13: 978-0-473-11727-6.

Reviewed by Murray Dawson

In the last issue of the New Zealand Garden Journal (2006, Vol. 9, No. 2, p. 32), we published Brian Molloy's book launch speech for Eagle's Complete Trees and Shrubs of New Zealand.

Audrey Eagle's superb two-volume set contains some 800 paintings and information on nearly all of the trees and shrubs found in New Zealand. The formatting and emphasis of this outstanding work is naturally placed on Eagle's wonderful illustrations, so throughout the book the drawings are placed on the right hand page and the text on the left hand page. As a consequence of this design constraint, the accompanying text is at times concise.

The Botanical Society of Otago has stepped in and published additional information on about 630 of the plants illustrated by Eagle. As explained by Audrey Eagle in the Foreword of this valuable 114-page Supplement, these notes;

"include interesting and useful information not necessarily apparent in the paintings such as important comparative differences between similar species, taxonomic notes, conservation status, threats, special features, breeding systems, regional variation (morphology, colour etc), historical information, discoverers, cultural uses and values, hybridism, cultivation, phenology (flowering times etc), ecological notes, and much else."

This Supplement has been collated from Audrey Eagle's notes as well as those provided by many of New Zealand's leading botanists including Mike Bayly and Alison Kellow, Shannel Courtney, Helen and the late Tony Druce, Eric Godley, Peter Heenan, Peter de Lange, Brian Molloy, Colin Ogle, and Neil Simpson, among others.

Cross-referencing is easy, as the additional notes in the Supplement are arranged following the page number and botanical name (family, genus, species, etc) for the relevant plant illustrated in Eagle's two-volume set.

If you have already spent NZ$200 on Eagle's Complete Trees and Shrubs of New Zealand (and I strongly recommend that you do), then the additional NZ$20 being asked for the Supplement represents good value indeed.

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