"An Illustrated Catalog of American Fruits and Nuts"
A remarkable celebration of the USDA’s pomological collection, offering an engaging, biophillic meditation upon the sweetest of the earth’s produce.
The United States Department of Agriculture Pomological Watercolor Collection encompasses 7,497 paintings of fruit and nut varieties, alongside specimens introduced by USDA plant explorers from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Assembled between 1886 and 1942, the collection's extraordinary, botanically accurate watercolors were intended to aid accurate identification and examination of fruit varietals for the nation’s fruit growers.
Documenting the transformation of American pomology —the science of fruit breeding — and the horticultural innovations of fruit cultivation, the USDA’s collection offers fascinating insights into the fruits we devour, and why.
This glorious volume includes anecdotes and observations drawn from the fields of archaeology and anthropology, horticulture and literature, ancient representation and contemporary visual art. With contributions by authors Jacqueline Landy, John McPhee, Michael Pollan and Marina Vitaglione.
Hardcover, 356 pages