Seven Plants that Changed the World Based on the book “An Empire of Plants” by Toby and Will Musgrave Tina Tuttle
Nicotiana tabacum An annual in the Solanaceae family, used by the Mayan as early as 1500BC.
Nicotiana alata Nicotiana sylvestris Nicotiana langsdorffii
Saccharum officinarum “The world’s most indulgent and unnecessary crop!”
The process: • Harvested by hand. • Canes are run through rollers • to extract the juice. • 3. Boiled, evaporated into sugar crystals. 5. Rum 4. Molasses
Beta vulgaris Zea mays
Gossypium tomentosum One of the oldest cultivated plants, an annual in the Malvaceae family.
Coastal Cotton in USA Calico Cottons from Calcutta, India Muslin from Mosul Turkey Cotton Nankeen Cotton from Nanjing, China
1738 1764 1794 1775
Camellia sinensis Known since 2737BC and cultivated in 3rd century AD. China’s national drink in Tang dynasty (610-906AD).
Wedgewood 1908 1904
“Plucking plateau” Green Tea Black Tea
Papaver somniferum Called the “Plant of Joy”
The First Opium War 1840-1842-- Treaty of Nanjing ceded Hong Kong. The Second Opium War 1856-1860
Lemon Poppy Seed Cake Hypodermic needle-1853
Chinchona officinalis Member of the madder family (Rubinaceae), kin to Gardenia and known as “Jesuit Bark”.
Hevea brassilliensis Aztecs painted the milky sap of this tropical tree on their feet as waterproof ‘boots’.
Charles Macintosh Charles Goodyear The Michelin Brothers John B. Dunlop
Did you learn anything new?? Any Questions? Thank You!