The Realm of Plants

About Formative Forces in the Plant World

Dick van Romunde

Original Drawings by Elly van Hardeveld

Translated by James Lee and Jannebeth Röell

Hardbound, Dust Jacketed, Beautifully illustrated on semi-gloss paper

$28.00

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This is one of the most unusual and beautiful books we have ever carried -- one of those rare books that is so filled with wonderful things to discover, and so well conceived, and so very, very well printed and bound that just holding it in your hand is enough to convince you that it is a treasure, in fact, something to be treasured for years and generations to come. It's as though what is inside the covers is so powerful and true that it reaches out to you before you lay eyes on the first words.

Dick van Romunde was a Waldorf science teacher who felt that part of his task on earth was to show his readers the natural world, seen through eyes trained by Goethe and Steiner. And what a warm and fascinating journey he takes us on! Plant by plant, we look with him and listen as he tells us what he has found to be most significant, most at the heart of that form of life. It's as though we were invited on a field trip with a naturalist who is as wise as he is learned, and who just loves to share what he knows.

This is a book that is lavishly illustrated -- in general, you'll find tasteful, elegant color drawings on every other page; yet, it is the text that keeps pulling my eyes away from the truly beautiful drawings. Yes, I know. I can hardly believe it either; in fact, I can't think of another instance where something this has happened. But van Romunde's insights and observations are so very engaging that I simply can't take my eyes off them, even when I want to.

This is a book to cherish and return to over and over.

And by the way, the translation is as elegant as van Romunde's work deserves -- clear, clean English that flows like a river across the author's thoughts.

Perceiving Plants - Experiencing Elemental Beings

The Influence of Gnomes, Nymphs, Sylphs and Fire Spirits upon the Life of Plants

Dick van Romunde

Translated by James Lee and Jannebeth Röell

Paperback

$12.00

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Perceiving Plants was originally written as an introduction to Rudolf Steiner's Man as Symphony of the Creative Word (newly titled in English as Harmony of the Creative Word). From there, van Romunde expanded it and the result is this amazing little book in which the author teaches us how to become sensitive to the nature beings that sustain and effect plant life.

Whether you begin next to a favorite potted plant or out in a beautiful meadow, you'll find van Romunde teaching you things that will forever change the way you look at the natural world -- and will probably forever change your life. For, once we become truly awake to the helpful nature spirits, it is very difficult to go on as though they didn't exist, as if what we did really didn't matter.

Perceiving Plants offers us a uniquely joyous awakening to both the nature spirits and our own responsibility. A lovesong to both plants and the beings who create within them.

The Living World of Plants

A Book for Children and Students of Nature

Dr. Gerbert Grohmann

Softbound

$16.00

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This book can be thought of as a distillation of Grohmann's extensive two-volume study, The Plant. Here, the material is presented in a way that will engage both younger students and the adults who teach them. I find that in many ways, The Living World of Plants, is much more powerful in its capacity to evoke awe at the truly amazing world of plants than his more detailed presentation in The Plant. If you are not conversant with the plant world, but would like to be, this is the book for you. An excellent source book for teachers of all grade levels, whether in school or at home. Can be useful as a reader for children grades 5 and up.

New Eyes for Plants

A Workbook for Observing and Drawing Plants

Margaret Colquhoun and Axel Ewald

$30.00

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This gorgeous book presents one of the finest ways to get to know and understand the life of plants and their relationship to the world and to us. Approached with a sensitive artistry, the reader is guided through exercises and examples that unveil the vibrancy of plantlife as they refine one's artistic skills. If you have ever longed to really "see" plants in their fullness, this book will guide your way.

Song of the Seven Herbs

Walking Night Bear & Stan Padilla

Softbound

$11.95

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You and your children can enter into a beautiful story of how it came to be that the Creator of All Good Things gave healing herbs to the people of the Earth.  It all began when the Creator of All Bad things brought disharmony, and thereby illness, to the world.  Seeing this, the Creator of All Good things made a special plants to cure the illnesses that were brought to the world. 

What follows are the stories of seven herbs that encompass various forms of disharmony and their healing solutions.  You and your children will learn how the plants grow, why the Creator of All Good Things gave them particular healing powers, and how it is that the people use them.  Couched within this myth that resonates with the Greek myth of Pandora's Box story, Genesis 1:12 from the Judeo-Christian tradition, and many other world creations stories, is one of the finest presentations of botanical natural history and herbal wisdom that I have come upon.  Any child who is treated to this book will learn things of value for the entirety of their lives, and in ways that will not soon be forgotten.

Song of the Seven Herbs is just right for the Waldorf 5th grade botany block.  Covered are the following herbs: Stinging Nettle, Yarrow, Dandelion, Violet, Chicory, Wild Rose, Sunflower.  This book is a joy - one to share and return to as often as you need a reminder of the ways of goodness in the world of ours.

Highly recommended for children and adults over age 10.

The Sun Seed

Written and Illustrated by Jan Schubert

Hardbound

$17.95

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“Early one spring morning, a little seed woke up after her long winter sleep. She yawned and stretched. With a loud CRACK her hard brown jacket fell away. 'Oh!' said the surprised seed. The earth above felt warm.”

... this was just the beginning of big changes to come.

The radiant illustrations in this book are made from dyed wool fibers needlefelted by the author. Jan describes the experience as “painting with a needle.”

(Ages 3–5).

Tree in the Trail

Holling Clancy Holling

Softbound

Full color and black & white illustrations

$11.95

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As with Big Tree, Tree in the Trail uses the life of a tree to portray both the passing of history and life cycles of nature. Where Big Tree uses a Redwood to survey the founding moments of Western Civilization, Tree in the Trail is about a Cottonwood and the things that happened within the tree's view over two hundred years along the Santa Fe Trail in the American Southwest. There are animals and people that bring to life the history, both natural and human, of this amazing part of the world. And through all the dramatic changes, the tree continues to stand and grow.

Like Holling's other books, this one is packed with story and teaching; with life itself.

Goethe & Palladio

Goethe's study of the relationship between art and nature, leading through architecture to the discovery of the metamorphosis of plants

David Lowe/Simon Sharp

Softbound

$15.00

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The poet, dramatist, novelist, and scientist, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe had to wait many years before he was able to travel south to Italy, "the land where the lemon trees bloom." He had gained success in several fields, but he had a sense of being trapped and confined and felt a need for light. Italy would give this to him in a number of ways.

Taking as their basis Goethe’s Italian Journey, the authors of this fascinating and unusual study explore how Goethe’s experience of Palladio’s architecture influenced his view of the relationship between art and nature in general and, in particular, helped him form his understanding of metamorphosis, leading to his discovery of the “archetypal plant.”

In his carefully written account of his travels, Goethe seems to oscillate between experiences of architecture and experiences of nature. In nature, he searched for the "archetypal plant," the essential form whose metamorphosis through time would produce the plant we see in its cycle from seed to fruit. In the art and architecture of antiquity and in Palladio’s classical reformulation of it, he tried to understand the purpose and function of artistic creation.

Until now, no one has put these two together. David Lowe and Simon Sharp show for the first time how these seemingly unrelated subjects are related—how the living geometries and volumes of harmoniously proportioned buildings, the “great idea” of architecture, can lead to the intuition of similar principles in nature.

David Lowe and Simon Sharp have worked together for twenty-one years. One of their first projects was the recreation of Goethe’s Italian Journey. They have given numerous workshops and presentations on the subject in the U.S. and U.K., including The British Museum, the German Embassy, and the Edinburgh Festival.

This is must-reading for anyone interested in Goethe's ideas on plants and metamorphosis.