Archive for March, 2015

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Here Come the Winners

March 31, 2015

The 2015 American Horticultural Society gardening book awards have been announced. There are five winners. Congratulations!:

 

Capture Apples of Uncommon Character by Rowan Jacobsen (Bloomsbury)

With more than 150 art-quality color photographs, Apples of Uncommon Character shows us the fruit in all its glory. Jacobsen collected specimens both common and rare from all over North America, selecting 120 to feature, including the best varieties for eating, baking, and hard-cider making. Each is accompanied by a photograph, history, lore, and a list of characteristics. The book also includes 20 recipes, savory and sweet, resources for buying and growing, and a guide to the best apple festivals. It’s a must-have for every foodie.

 

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The Market Gardener by Jean-Martin Fortier (New Society Publishers)

 

The Market Gardener is a compendium of la Grelinette’s proven horticultural techniques and innovative growing methods. This complete guide is packed with practical information on:

  • Setting-up a micro-farm by designing biologically intensive cropping systems, all with negligible capital outlay
  • Farming without a tractor and minimizing fossil fuel inputs through the use of the best hand tools, appropriate machinery, and minimum tillage practices
  • Growing mixed vegetables systematically with attention to weed and pest management, crop yields, harvest periods, and pricing approaches

 

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Flora Ilustrata edited by Susan M. Fraser and Vanessa Bezemer Sellers (Yale University Press and New York Botanical Garden)

The renowned LuEsther T. Mertz Library of The New York Botanical Garden counts among its holdings many of the most beautiful and pioneering botanical and horticultural works ever created. More than eight centuries of knowledge, from the twelfth century to the present, are represented in the library’s collection of over one million items. In this sumptuously illustrated volume, international experts introduce us to some of the library’s most fascinating works—exceedingly rare books, stunning botanical artworks, handwritten manuscripts, Renaissance herbals, nursery catalogs, explorers’ notebooks, and more. The contributors hold these treasures up for close inspection and offer surprising insights into their histories and importance.

 

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Weeds of North America by Richard Dickinson and France Royer (University of Chicago Press)

Richard Dickinson and France Royer shed light on this complex world with Weeds of North America, the essential reference for all who wish to understand the science of the all-powerful weed.

Encyclopedic in scope, the book is the first to cover North American weeds at every stage of growth. The book is organized by plant family, and more than five hundred species are featured. Each receives a two-page spread with images and text identification keys. Species are arranged within family alphabetically by scientific name, and entries include vital information on seed viability and germination requirements.
Whether you believe, like Donald Culross Peattie, that “a weed is a plant out of place,” or align with Elizabeth Wheeler Wilcox’s “weeds are but unloved flowers,” Dickinson and Royer provide much-needed background on these intrusive organisms. In the battle with weeds, knowledge truly is power. Weeds of North America is the perfect tool for gardeners, as well as anyone working in the business of weed ecology and control.

 

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Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden by Jessica Walliser (Timber Press)

Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden is a book about bugs and plants, and how to create a garden that benefits from both. In addition to information on companion planting and commercial options for purchasing bugs, there are 19 detailed bug profiles and 39 plant profiles. The bug profiles include a description, a photograph for identification, an explanation of what they do for the garden, and the methods gardeners can use to attract them. The plant profiles highlight the best plants for attracting beneficial bugs and offer detailed information on size, care requirements, zone information, and bloom time. Design plans show gardeners how to design a border specifically for the bugs. This complete, hands-on guide is for anyone looking for a new, natural, and sustainable way to control pests.

Credit:  Book descriptions originally posted on Amazon.

For more information, click on each book title.

 

 

 

 

 

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Look what fell from the sky!

March 23, 2015

In California, where I live, we are in our fourth drought year.  When I woke this morning and looked outside at wet surfaces, sparkling vegetation, and droplets on leaves and blossoms, I felt an impulse to capture the memory.

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It’s Here! Time to . . .

March 20, 2015

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