Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

February 1993


Published in Great Plains Research 3:1 (February 1993), pp. 123-125. Copyright © 1993 The Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Used by permission.


This is a book for the advanced amateur. It comes five years after Kindscher's Edible Wild Plants of the Prairie which was also an outgrowth of the author's master's thesis (University of Kansas).

Kindscher set two goals for his new book and I believe that he will achieve both. He hoped that it would foster more understanding of the prairie and the uses of its constituent plants, and he wanted to encourage protection, conservation, and reestablishment of the prairie grasslands wherever possible. These goals are shared by many today, but the prairie speaks softly while competing interests such as farming, ranching and commercial development represent loud and politically powerful constituencies. Kindscher points out that people tend to relate to and show more concern for individual species such as pandas, bald eagles, and rare orchids than they do for biological communities like wetland or tall grasslands.