Monday, October 5, 2009

Books: Breed Your Own Vegetable Varieties, by Carol Deppe

I never enjoyed genetics in school. I never cared what-eye-colored parents could have a blue-eyed child. I was never interested in little charts of traits and dominant and recessive genes and... bleah. Dullness. Pass the test and get on with life.

But when you apply all that to food, or to flowers, now that's a whole different game. If understanding genes allows me to make something that never existed before, a unique creation of my very own, a rose or tomato that looks and smells a little bit different from the way any other rose or tomato ever looked and smelled before - that's pretty cool.

That's what this book is about. Well, it's also about politics and the tragedy of plant patents, but I'm frivolous enough to just bypass that part and move on to the fun stuff.

It explains genetics in a way that is utterly understandable. Genetics, and experiments, and the scientific method, all "work" - not because someone wrapped them in something interesting to make them palatable, but because the interesting thing is already there, and you happen to need the genetics and the scientific method to get at it.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

No comments:

Post a Comment