Three Very Good Plant Documentaries

Hello folks! I hope this post finds you all doing well. I watch a lot of documentaries on YouTube about various topics and stumbled upon Botany: A Blooming History Part 1 of 3. It was AWESOME! So, I had to search for the other three parts.

They are REALLY good and I know they answered a lot of questions. I always wondered how Carl Linnaeus named so many plant species. I always thought, even though his abbreviation was used, maybe he didn’t actually name them all but was the first to write about them. In this first part, I found out that before Linnaeus “re-named” plants, they had VERY long names. Besides genus and species, the rest of the name had to do with plant features and characteristics. So, Linnaeus shortened their names to just genus and species, sometimes completely renaming them or reclassifying them. Of course, over the years, many plants have been renamed and reclassified several times.

The narrator does a very good job talking about the earlier botanists whos work shaped the way we classify plants today.


Botany: A Blooming History Part 2 of 3 Photosynthesis.

It wasn’t until the 20th century that photosynthesis was figured out. In history, a physician/botanist that opened his mouth to say that plants had healing properties was arrested. To think plants could heal was blasphemy toward God. He was put on house arrest. Until one of his research projects, people thought plants ate soil. So, he set out to see if it were true. He took a few fig trees, weighed the plant and the dry soil and waited. After five years, he re-weighed the trees and the soil. Although the trees had grown the soil weighed almost the same that it did five years earlier. His conclusion? Plants drink water…

They didn’t get the picture and even 17th-century botanists didn’t know much about how plants grow. They had been so busy identifying and classifying plants, writing books and making a name for themselves (and arguing among themselves) that little attention was given to what makes a plant tick.

I could say more but I think if you are interested you would like to watch the documentary for yourself. In one part, though, “the man” who figured out what plants do with carbon dioxide was “let go” from “a” university and later his boss was given the Nobel Prize… Thirty years later, he wrote a book telling about his “teams” work and never mentioned the name of “the man” who actually figured it out. Well, in the beginning, “the man” and his boss were working on the same question but they were in disagreement. Actually, “the boss” didn’t realize “the man” didn’t agree with him because “the man” was working on his own experiment behind his bosses back… As a result, “the bosses” theory was proven wrong and “the man’s” theory was correct… Well, there is a little more to the story, but you get the idea.


Botany: A Blooming History Part 3 of 3: Hidden World

Part 3 takes a closer look at plant breeding and inheritance. It’s amazing how the early botanists and researchers did such hands-on experimenting all without the use of modern science. Much like we would do in our own garden and flower beds.

YouTube has a lot of very good documentaries in just about every niche you can think of. Since December 2016 I have become interested in ancient civilizations. As a kid, history wasn’t one of my favorite subjects but lately, it just fascinates me what has been discovered in recent years. From YouTube, I also subscribed to Some of the videos on are somewhat out of date because I have watched newer videos that contradict or improve on the older ones. Well, many people have their own opinions, too.

OK, now I will stop so I can continue. Until next time, have an enjoyable weekend. Be safe, stay positive, embrace life around you, and just go outside and take a deep breath. Of course, as always, GET DIRTY!

4 comments on “Three Very Good Plant Documentaries

  1. These look good. Thanks for the recommendations.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Vicki says:

    Sounds like an interesting series, Lonnie.

    Having written a thesis on the history of Herbal Medicine when studying the subject (and essential oils when I qualified as an Aromatherapist in the early 1990s) and being fascinated by medieval herbals and the use of plants in healing, I’ve found the history of nomenclature in the plant kingdom is indeed (also) a fascinating subject.

    I’ve donated or have given most of my herbals away now. My short-term memory problems make reading on any subject disappear before I even get to the end of a book chapter sometimes. Gone are the days of knowing the common name, species, genus and so on of all the common herbs.

    It’s really hard to keep up with the constant name changes in modern times, let alone the variation in common names from country to country (and let’s not forget the variation in medieval English and European villages a few hundred years ago).

    Being an amateur photographer now and with this intermittent memory and cognitive dysfunction, I admit I just like looking at the photos of flowers, plants, trees, barks and so on. But I AM trying to get some of those names right and plants/birds correctly identified these for my (rejuvenated) nature blog in the Category index.

    Liked by 1 person

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