Edible Plants: A Photographic Survey of the Wild Edible Botanicals of North America

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Product Details

Red Lightning Books
9.2 X 11.7 X 1.0 inches | 3.6 pounds

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About the Author

Jimmy W. Fike was born in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1970. Even at an early age he showed a penchant for art and a love for exploring nature. He earned a BA in Art from Auburn University and an MFA in Photography from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. Fike's photographs have been exhibited extensively across the United States, published in the Washington Post, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, Mother Jones, and can be found in the permanent collections of the George Eastman Museum, St. Lawrence University, and the University of Alabama Birmingham. He currently lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with his daughter, Isobel, and dogs, Sallie and Scrappy, where he works as Residential Art Faculty at Estrella Mountain Community College.


For the last 13 years, Fike has been photographing North America's edible flora. But instead of snapping pictures in the field, he carefully harvests the plants and takes them home to photograph. During the editing process, he only leaves a few splashes of color in the image to identify edible parts of the plant. With the plants pinned up like butterflies, the result is both vivid and somehow gruesome.

--Anne Ewbank "Atlas Obscura"

This is an unusual and exceptionally engaging survey of edible plants. Hungry food foragers will carry it in the woods, and the images are wonderfully suitable for coffee-table enjoyment.

--Art Lichtenstein "Booklist"

A simply gorgeous and sumptuously illustrated coffee-table style volume, Edible Plants: A Photographic Survey of the Wild Edible Botanicals of North America will prove to be a welcome and prized addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library Contemporary Flora & Botanical Photography collections. . . . Edible Plants is especially commended to the attention of non-specialist general readers who are curious about unlocking the secrets of native North American plants through the expert commentaries that accompany each truly memorable and full color photograph.

--James A. Cox "Midwest Book Review"

These striking photographs seek to inform, similar to the horticultural photography and illustrations of eras past, perhaps making foragers of us all. But what's more, they are painstakingly beautiful. This book would make an impressive gift for the naturalist in your life. (starred review)

--Susannah Felts "Bookpage"

Edible Plants: A Photographic Survey of the Wild Edible Botanicals of North America is a gorgeous book: page after page of photographs of plants posed against a black background, silver-white with highlights in full color, worthy of pride of place on the coffee table. This book would make a great gift for someone fascinated by nature, or who admires art and composition, or preferably both. The photos are almost otherworldly, but grounded in the world around us. I recommend taking a long, slow afternoon to gaze at them, and then go for a walk to find what's growing between the cracks in the sidewalk in your neighborhood.

--Erica H. Smith "Washington Gardener"