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Paperback Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Perennials Book

ISBN: 0875969992

ISBN13: 9780875969992

Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Perennials

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Format: Paperback

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Book Overview

Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Perennials is the definitive guide to: * Creating beautiful combinations * Growing lush, healthy gardens * Using hundreds of versatile perennials!

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Makes Getting "Serious Gardener" Results Much Easier

This is the one book about perennials to own if you can only own one -- part growing manual, part plant reference encyclopedia, and part garden design guide. I stumbled into gardening by accident, having avoided it throughout my youth, but once I caught "the bug," I wanted to learn in a hurry how to do it correctly. This book was (and is) the perfect choice. Actually, I discovered the advantages of this book backwards: I began by just using it to look up the dozens of plants that I began to bring home from nurseries with the word "perennial" on their hangtags. After a while, I noticed that it had great advice on how to keep the ones that were dying under my care from, well, dying under my care. And eventually I saw that Phillips and Burrell were also smarter than me about how to plan out my garden, for both improved aesthetics and healthier plants. One aspect of this book that I liked from Day One is that the authors speak the non-gardener version of English, so it's easy to understand and follow. One would think all gardening books would be down-to-earth (pun intended), but no...not like this one. If you have a garden already, you might want to start using this book by charting out the current layout of the garden and labeling each plant. Don't worry - the book is filled with full-color photographs to help you identify anything that you don't recognize by name. And pretty soon you'll not only see options you hadn't considered before, you'll even know what to ask for at the nursery or home center. Have fun with it. I know I do.

An ideal instructional reference for the novice gardener

Collaboratively written and organized by gardening experts Ellen Phillips and Colston Burrell is a 712-page compendium offering up everything there is to know about the cultivation of perennials. Organized into three major sections: Designing the Perennial Garden; Growing Perennials; and The Perennial Encyclopedia, Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Perennials is additionally enhanced with lists of suggested readings and resources, as well as an index. An ideal instructional reference for the novice gardener, Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Perennials offers up a wealth of information that will prove to be of substantial and enduring usefulness to even the seasoned and experienced gardener and horticulturist.

The best

I bought this book when I first started my perennial garden, never having gardened before. It guided me in soil preparation, siting, and plant selection in those early days, and it has continued to be a reference tool ever since. If you're just starting out, buy this along with Maconovich's Caring For Perennials and you won't need a single other book. If you're a seasoned gardener, my advice is still the same!

Wonderful addition for the new perennial gardener...

Have you reached the point in your gardening career where you'd like to move on from lawns and beds of gaudy annuals to the more refined art of perennial gardening? This guide book provides an overview of what you might consider. The Rodale press has been publishing ecologically responsible books and magazines for a number of years (at least 30 -- I first subscribed to "Organic Gardening" in the early 1970s). Their committment to promoting environmentally friendly ways to garden is evident in this publication. Sections that will prove most instructive for "green" gardeners cover: 1) pests, weeds, diseases and ecologically sound ways to cope with them; and 2) soil composition and how to improve it with organic materials including compost. The garden designs found in Section 1 are tricky. In my experience, it is useful to plan a bit, but as John Lennon said, life is what happens when you're making other plans. Most of the designs are a bit complicated for experienced perennial gardeners let alone the new gardeners. Juggling plants for size, color, height, blooming time, soil composition, water, light needs, PH and other requirements is no small task. The authors have presented plant combinations that will work together, but they will not work everywhere. If I was starting out, I'd plant a few perennials and add more as I became confident the first plants were going to make it. Also, many gardeners forget that plants grow. I would start with a combo of perennials, bulbs, and annuals and remove the annuals as the perennials take over. The authors have provided a good A-Z list of perennials in Part Three of the book (many can survive the blackest thumb for at least one season). None of the plants listed is impossible to find--in fact many can be found in the larger nursery. Whether you can find the colors or type you want is another matter. The authors suggest using seeds for some plants and mail order companies for others. A list of resources (plant and bulb suppliers)can be found in the back of the book. Since not all plants do well in all areas, you may want to take time to look at other people's gardens and your local botanical gardens before you do anything. Also, many areas have master gardener programs and state agricultural extension services that you may find useful.

Wonderful Pictorial Perennial Reference Book

This book is one of the best and easiest to use reference books. The encylopedia section is alphabetical and provides beautiful pictures of many plants with pronunciation, description, growing, and uses sections. Also included are sections on designing and growing perennials with pictures and helpful illustrations.
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