NCBG Recommends - Our Favorite Books

(The Ones We Always Reach For and the Ones We Can’t Put Down)

These ‘go-to’ books are great reference books when creating and maintaining a garden of native plants of the southeastern United States. Whether you want to improve your gardeners speak, find out how to eliminate a specific invasive, identify a fern, or whether you grow plants, vegetables, or orchids, these books are comprehensive, easy to use and understand, and all available in the garden shop! These are our favorites, from us to you! Enjoy.

A Botanist’s Vocabulary: 1300 Terms Explained and Illustrated

By Susan K. Pell and Bobbi Angeli

Gardeners are inherently curious. They make note of a plant label in a botanical garden and then go home to learn more. They pick up fallen blossoms to examine them closer. They spend hours reading plant catalogs. But they are often unable to accurately name or describe their discoveries. A Botanist’s vocabulary gives gardeners and naturalists a better understanding of what they see and a way to categorize and organize the natural world in which they are so intimately involved. Through concise definitions and detailed black and white illustrations, it defines 1300 words commonly used by botanists, naturalists, and gardeners to describe plants.

IPM for Gardeners: A Guide to Integrated Pest Management

By Raymond A. Cloyd, Philip L. Nixon, and Nancy R. Pataky

Since the publication of Silent Spring in 1962, interest in alternative pest-management strategies has increased dramatically. As a way to reduce the use of pesticides and keep plants healthy, integrated pest management (IPM) has evolved to emphasize prevention, early diagnosis (or “scouting”), and long-term control strategies—not quick fixes. Many nurseries, land-use agencies, and public gardens now require the use of IPM as an intelligent, real-world system to raise plants in an environmentally responsible manner. Despite a plethora of technical IPM training manuals, no book until now has distilled its core philosophy for the home gardener, so that he or she can learn to manage plant health as the professionals do, based on scientific principles. In IPM for Gardeners, a team of experts explains how any gardener can use IPM techniques for success at home. Authoritative well-illustrated, and packed with case studies, this volume promises to change the way we see our gardens.

Plant Conservation: Why it Matters and How It Works

By Timothy Walker

Plants’ ability to turn sunlight into energy make them the basis for all life; without them there is no life. And they are more than just a food source—they provide us with fuel, fibers, and pharmaceuticals. Global warming and the destruction of natural habitats are a serious threat to many plants, and there are worldwide efforts to mitigate the disaster. Plant Conservation treats a critical topic in an accessible and optimistic way. It is required reading for students, professionals, and anyone with a keen interest in the importance of plants.

The Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in the Southeast

By Ira Wallace

Growing vegetable requires specific information—what to plant, when to plant it, and when to harvest are based on climate, weather, and first frost. The timber press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in the southeast tackles this need head on, with regionally specific growing information written by local gardening expert, Ira Wallace. This region includes Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. Monthly planting guides show exactly what you can do in the garden from January through December. The skill sets go beyond the basics with tutorials on seed saving, worm bins, and more. This book also includes a comprehensive gardening primer and an A to Z of edibles—a detailed, invaluable source for the region’s tried-and- tested Varieties.

Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants

By Doug Tallamy

As developed and subsequent habitat destruction accelerate, there are increasing pressures on wildlife populations. But there is an important and simple step toward reversing this alarming trend. Everyone with access to a patch of earth can make a significant contribution toward sustaining biodiversity. There is an unbreakable link between native plant species and native wildlife—native insects cannot or will not, eat alien plants. When native plants disappear, the insects disappear, impoverishing the food source for birds and other animals. In many parts of the world, habitat destruction has been so extensive that local wildlife is in crisis and may be headed toward extinction. Bringing Nature Home has sparked a national conversation about the link between healthy local ecosystems and human well-being, and the new paperback edition—with an expanded resource section and updated photos—will help broaden the movement. By acting on Douglas Tallamy’s practical recommendations, everyone can make a difference.

Planting in a Post-Wild World: Designing Plant Communities for Resilient Landscapes

By Thomas Rainer and Claudia West

Over time, with industrialization and urban sprawl, we have driven nature out of our neighborhoods and cities. But we can invite it back by designing landscapes that look and function more like they do in the wild robust, diverse, and visually harmonious. Planting in a Post-Wild World by Thomas Rainer and Claudia West is an inspiring call to action dedicated to the idea of a new nature—a hybrid of both the wild and the cultivated—that can flourish in our cities and suburbs. This is both a post-wild manifesto and practical guide that describes how to incorporate and layer plants into plant communities to create an environment that is reflective of natural systems and thrives within out built world.

Native Trees of the Southeast: An Identification Guide

By Katherine Kirkman, Claud L. Brown, and Donald J. Leopold

The diversity of woody plants in the southeast is unparalleled in North America. Native Trees of the Southeast is a practical, compact field guide for the identification of the more than 225 trees native to the region, from the Carolinas and eastern Tennessee south through Georgia into northern Florida and west through Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Arkansas into eastern Texas. For confident identification, nearly 600 photographs, close to 500 of them in color, illustrate leaves, flowers and fruits or cones, bark, and twigs with buds. Full descriptions are accomplished by keys for plants in both summer and winter condition, as well as over 200 range maps. Crucial differences between plants that may be mistaken for each other are discussed.

The Living Landscape: Designing for Beauty and Biodiversity in the Home Garden

By Rick Darke and Doug Tallamy

Many gardeners today want a home landscape that nourishes and fosters wildlife. But they also want beauty, a space for the kids to play, privacy, and maybe even a vegetable patch. Sure, it’s a tall order, but The Living landscape shows how to do it. By combining the insights of two outstanding authors, it offers a model that anyone can follow. Inspired by its examples, you’ll learn the strategies for making and maintaining a diverse layered landscape—one that offers beauty on many levels, provides rooms and turf areas for children and pets, incorporates fragrance and edible plants and provides cover, shelter and sustenance for wildlife. Richly illustrated with superb photographs and informed by both a keen eye for design and an understanding of how healthy ecologies work. The Living landscape will enable you to create a garden that is full of life and that fulfills both human needs and the needs of wildlife communities.

Botany for Gardeners (third edition)

By Brain Capon

For two decades readers around the world have been fascinated by Brian Capon’s crystal-clear descriptions of how plants work. What happens inside a seed after it is planted? How do plants use each other—and animals—to survive? How do they reproduce, and how do they transform nutrients into growth? Botany for Gardeners is the most complete, compact, and accessible introduction to the world of botany available. The new edition has been expanded with dazzling scanning electron microscope photographs and even more amazing facts about plants. Especially timely are new essays on food plants: what makes plants edible, the effects of climate change, and the role of genetic engineering. Whether it’s the exotic behaviors of unusual seeds, the astounding weight-bearing capacity of the Victoria waterlily, or the ingenious existence of lichens, the third edition of Botany for Gardeners will be embraced by beginning gardeners and devoted plant-o-philes.

Native Ferns, Moss, and Grasses: From Emerald Carpet to Amber Wave, Serene and Sensuous Plants for the Garden

By William Cullina

William Cullina’s fresh and informative take on identifying and caring for native plants comes full circle in Native Ferns, Moss, and Grass, the third book in a series (which also includes Wildflowers and native Trees, Shrubs and Vines) that combines encyclopedic information about North American species with practical instruction. Cullina notes that ferns, moss, and grasses are the green canvas for colorful blooms: they bring a level of refinement and sophistication that no flower can match, and no garden is complete without them. Native Ferns, Moss and Grasses offers a thorough discussion of plant hardiness, and for each species the natural range, type of soil, and habitat in which the plant thrives is indicated. The book concludes with complete information on where to buy featured plants and suggested species for various uses and spaces.

Understanding Perennials: A New Look at an Old Favorite

By William Cullina

A visually beautiful guide to working with perennials and helping them flourish by one of today’s best gardening writers. Perennials are the basis of virtually every garden. The shelves are loaded with books that give readers the same list of plants. That “encyclopedia” is missing from this book—who needs another one? Instead Bill Cullina has offered what he describes as the psychology of perennials—their needs, wants, and potentials. Starting at the roots, moving up through the stems, the leaves, and finally the flowers, Cullina has written a groundbreaking book that will stand as the definitive work on the horticulture of the most important plants in everyone’s garden. “A book that provides both new and seasoned gardeners the strong foundation for a lasting relationship with these plants.” As Michael Pollan said of another Cullina book, “This is one of those exceedingly rare reference books that you’ll consult simply for the pleasure of its prose.”

Native Trees, Shrubs, and Vines: A Guide to Using, Growing, and Propagating North American Woody Plants

By William Cullina

For gardeners, for landscape professionals, and for anyone who cares about preserving the natural world, NATIVE TREES, SHRUBS, AND VINES is the first national guide to using, growing, and propagating North American woody plants. Written in lively, informative language and illustrated with more than two hundred photographs, William Cullina’s book is a comprehensive reference to almost one thousand native woody plants. An invaluable guide for naturalists, restorationists, nursery owners, landscape architects, and designers as well as gardeners, it points out that ecological gardening offers specific benefits to the individual as well as the environment. Even more than wildflowers, native trees, shrubs, and vines are essential to providing the food and shelter that attract birds and insects to the garden. And plants that are native to an area are far easier to grow and maintain than ordinary cultivated garden plants. This book provides a definitive reference to the native plants of the temperate North American continent. And because Cullina writes from personal experience with the plants in his books, he offers information that is considerably more helpful (and more interesting) than the facts one finds in most plant references.

Understanding Orchids: an Uncomplicated Guide to Growing the World’s Most Exotic Plants

By William Cullina

Orchids are the largest family of plants in the world. With 30,000 known species, you could acquire a different orchid every day for eighty years and still not grow them all. Back in the realm of reality, readers of this beautiful book can quickly and easily find the orchids that are right for them—which ones will thrive on a windowsill, which prefer artificial lights, and which need a greenhouse, which are for beginners, which for experts. And you can pinpoint the species within a particular genus that are the best ones to start with. Once you select your orchid, William Cullina’s authoritative guide explains what to do to keep it alive and healthy. Featuring more than two hundred color photographs, Understanding Orchids covers everything you need to know to grow orchids successfully, whatever your level of interest or experience. With improved tissue-culture techniques making orchids more affordable, and the internet making them readily available to consumers, growing orchids is more popular than ever; membership in the American Orchid Society has more than doubled in the last fifteen years. This is the book orchid fans have been waiting for.

Updated on May 23, 2017 at 03:33:21 pm.