There are over one billion organisms in a pinch of soil, and many of them perform functions essential to all life on the planet. Yet we know much more about deep space than about the universe below. In Tales from the Underground, Cornell ecologist David W. Wolfe lifts the veil on this hidden world, revealing for the first time what makes subterranean life so unique and so precious. Home to miniscule water bears and microscopic bacteria, mole rats and burrowing owls, the underground reigns supreme as it produces important pharmaceuticals, recycles life's essential elements, and helps plants gather nutrients. An original, awe-inspiring journey through a strange realm, Tales from the Underground will forever alter our appreciation of the natural world around-and beneath-us.
David W. Wolfe is Associate Professor of Plant Ecology in the Department of Horticulture at Cornell University, and a member of Cornell's Biogeochemistry Program. Much of his research is focused on soil conservation, and the impact of climate change on plants and soils. He has published many journal articles and academic papers. This is his first book.