Newly updated, Botany: An Introduction to Plant Biology, Fourth Edition provides an current, thorough overview of the fundamentals of botany. The topics and chapters are organized in a sequence that is easy to follow, beginning with the most familiar (structure) and proceeding to the less familiar (metabolism) then finishing with those topics that are probably the least familiar to most beginning students (genetics, evolution, the diversity of organisms, and ecology). The diversity and systematics are organized on a cladistics basis. An emphasis on natural selection throughout the book allows the instructor to incorporate analysis of diversity of structures and metabolisms into every subject. Believing that a knowledge of evolution by natural selection is essential for understanding biological structure and processes, the author works throughout the text to convey how powerful a concept natural selection is. Beginning with Chapter 1, selective advantage and fitness are referred to or discussed in every chapter and on almost every page. Natural selection is covered in detail in Chapter 17 after students have become rather sophisticated in their knowledge of plants and botanical phenomena.