The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 64, July 1960 - April, 1961 Page: 539
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order to qualify for application to all the plants included in the
text. These, collectively, range in woodiness from those listed in
the title through those exhibiting diminishing degrees of woodi-
ness among semi-shrubs to more and more completely herbaceous
perennials and even to plants of fixed annual habit. Sesbania
exaltata and S. vesicaria are outstanding examples, while Ricinus
communis (Castor-bean), within the area covered, is not only an
annual but is incapable of self perpetuation in the wild as an es-
cape from cultivation. If these strict annuals are admitted, it is dif-
ficult to perceive the bases upon which other equally coarse an-
nuals, as for example, the giant ragweed (Ambrosia aptera D. C.)
could be excluded. In this connection it is even more difficult to
account for the omission of Hechtia texana, a long-lived, coarse
perennial belonging to the Bromeliaceae (Pineapple Family) and
inhabiting arid hillside along the middle Rio Grande.
One of the most outstanding features of the book is the inclu-
sion of a great deal of heterogeneous information concerning the
many uses to which the various parts of plants collectively in-
cluded may be put. This information is taken from works cited in
two separate bibliographies; one (p. 1038) short, listing only
those references most often used; the other (p. 1041) much longer,
listing all books and articles cited, some perhaps only once. Listed
uses range from building materials to fibers, food (for man, bird,
and beast), condiments, medicines, cosmetics, oils, waxes, and
others. Frequently, notes also suggest means of propagation, and
susceptibility to attacks by fungi and by insects.
To sum up: The book will reasonably meet a long-felt need on
the part of a great many intelligent but non-technical people who
have a definite general interest in its subject matter, and who find
its method of presenting that subject matter interesting and un-
derstandable, despite certain recognized shortcomings. It falls far
short of meeting the requirements of professional taxonomists,
who, one and all, may be expected not to see its virtues by reason
of blindness induced by resentment at its intentional disregard
for form and language held by them to be professionally sacrosanct.
For having voiced the professional heresies possible to read
into this review, the writer is well aware that he has qualified
himself for inclusion in such adverse professional criticism as is
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 64, July 1960 - April, 1961, periodical, 1961; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101190/m1/582/: accessed June 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.