Humanities › History & Culture Famous Quotes from Botanist George Washington Carver Share Flipboard Email Print History & Culture Inventions Famous Inventors Famous Inventions Patents & Trademarks Invention Timelines Computers & The Internet American History African American History African History Ancient History and Culture Asian History European History Genealogy Latin American History Medieval & Renaissance History Military History The 20th Century Women's History View More By Mary Bellis Inventions Expert Mary Bellis covered inventions and inventors for ThoughtCo for 18 years. She is known for her independent films and documentaries, including one about Alexander Graham Bell. our editorial process Mary Bellis Updated November 02, 2020 George Washington Carver, credited as a scientist and inventor, is best known for promoting crop rotation from cotton to healthier options for the community, such as peanuts and sweet potatoes. He wanted poor farmers to grow alternative crops both as a source of their own food and as a source of other products to improve their quality of life. He developed 105 food recipes including peanuts. He was also a leader in promoting environmentalism. He received numerous honors for his work, including the Spingarn Medal of the NAACP. Enslaved from birth in the 1860s, his fame and life's work reached beyond the Back community. In 1941, Time magazine dubbed him a "Black Leonardo," a reference to his renaissance man qualities. 01 of 02 Carver's Quotes on Life Bettmann / Getty Images Learn to do common things uncommonly well; we must always keep in mind that anything that helps fill the dinner pail is valuable. There is no short cut to achievement. Life requires thorough preparation—veneer isn't worth anything. It is not the style of clothes one wears, neither the kind of automobile one drives nor the amount of money one has in the bank, that counts. These mean nothing. It is simply service that measures success. Look about you. Take hold of the things that are here. Let them talk to you. You learn to talk to them. How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and the strong. Because someday in life you will have been all of these. 02 of 02 Carver's Quotes on Farming Historical / Getty Images Take care of the waste on the farm and turn it into useful channels should be the slogan of every farmer. The primary idea in all of my work was to help the farmer and fill the poor man's empty dinner pail. My idea is to help the "man farthest down," this is why I have made every process just as simply as I could to put it within his reach. The farmer whose soil produces less every year is unkind to it in some way; that is, he is not doing it what he should; he is robbing it of some substance it must have, and he becomes, therefore, a soil robber rather than a progressive farmer. I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour if we will only tune in. Day after day I spent in the woods alone in order to collect my floral beauties and put them in my little garden I had hidden in the brush not far from the house, as it was considered foolishness in the neighborhood to waste time on flowers. Young people, I want to beg of you always keep your eyes open to what Mother Nature has to teach you. By so doing you will learn many valuable things every day of your life.