Zealand Land of Trees
An Artist's Journeys
Reviewed by Mike Gowing
glowing tribute from the British doyen of the conservation movement,
David Bellamy, to the New Zealand artist/author recognises Ronald
Cometti as a kindred spirit in the cause. And there's no doubt that,
with less than 20 per cent of New Zealand's native forests left,
this book is timely.
As the subtitle, An
Artist's Journey, suggests, this is a colourful personal and
pictorial record of 30 examples of native tree specimens throughout
the country, ranging from the contorted trunks of pohutukawa that
grace the coast of the Coromandel Peninsula to the dense moss-covered
veterans of the southern beech forests.
Although the author lacks
formal botanical qualifications, he has an expert illustrator's
eye for detail. Bright, clear depictions of the foliage adorn the
text with full A4 pictures devoted to each specimen on the facing
pages. The text is rich in personal anecdote - an easy yet informative
New Zealand Land of
Trees is a compelling summary of a dedicated conservationist's
vision of one of our most priceless assets - our native trees.
Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH