Born from volcanic faults deep below the mid-Atlantic, the inhospitable deserts and lavas of Ascension Island earned a fearsome reputation amongst early mariners. But beyond the intimidating exterior are verdant uplands and a small but tenacious flora adapted to uniquely marginal habitats. These have survived drought, overgrazing and waves of invasive species, resulting in almost unprecedented changes. In the most complete treatment yet, this field guide covers both acutely threatened natives and the chaotic panoply of new arrivals. It explores the islandís evolutionary significance, and its revealing insights into the impacts of humans on fragile ecosystems.