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Native Ferns, Moss, and Grasses: From Emerald Carpet to Amber Wave, Serene and Sensuous Plants for theGarden Hardcover – February 19, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (February 19, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618531181
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618531189
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.8 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #875,370 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Reigning over a trove of native flora at the New England Wild Flower Society, Cullina directs his expertise primarily to conservation, research, and education while bringing artistry to the horticultural realm of the society’s Garden in the Woods. In previous books, Cullina dealt with wildflowers, trees, shrubs, and vines. His latest effort looks at the panoply of textures available to the gardener who wishes to incorporate ferns or mosses into a shady, woodland setting or perhaps needs help selecting grasses for a sunny meadow. Cullina stresses the importance of each native plant’s genetic makeup as he guides readers to an understanding of hardiness factors from coast to coast, invasive species, and the effects of global warming. For the keen gardener or nursery professional, the book should prove an invaluable and authoritatively selective resource, with listings that provide common names, natural habitats, and cultural requirements as well as Cullina’s lively plant descriptions and personal musings. --Alice Joyce

About the Author

WILLIAM CULLINA, for many years the propagator at the New England Wild Flower Society, is the author of four major Houghton Mifflin gardening books. He is currently plant and arden curator at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, where he is developing a world-class botanical garden.

More About the Author

William Cullina (kul-EYE-nuh) Currently Bill is the Director of Horticulture/Plant Curator for one of North America's newest and most exciting public gardens, The Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay, Maine. Previously he was the Director of Horticultural Research for the New England Wild Flower Society in Massachusetts. A well known author and recognized authority on North American native plants, Cullina lectures on a variety of subjects to garden and professional groups and writes for popular and technical journals. His books include, Wildflowers, Native Trees, Shrubs, and Vines, Understanding Orchids, Native Ferns, Mosses, and Grasses, and most recently, Understanding Perennials, published in 2009. He and his wife, Melissa live with their three young children on Southport Island along the central Maine Coast. Visit his website www.williamcullina.com for writings, photography and updated lecture information.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Native Plant Lover on March 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I heard Bill Cullina speak about mosses last week at New England Wild Flower Society and immediately went home to rake the leaves off my woodland patches-giving the moss a better chance to become part of the garden. What beautiful plants! This book is inspiring me to focus on a whole new category of garden plants. Bill makes challenging topics accessible, fascinating-and funny. I can rely on Cullina's information completely. I use his WILDFLOWERS book for my go-to perennial plant reference, NATIVE TREES SHRUBS AND VINES for woody plants, and now this book to bring a whole new group of plants into focus. Check out the climate change map-75 years from now what might your zone for gardening be, according to Cullina? This books also brings new clarity to important conservation issues such as invasive plants, ecological landscaping and more. This is the ultimate in GOING GREEN, and a great read.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Jason P. Sorens on March 25, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Every native-plants gardener and natural landscaper know that a healthy, vibrant, aesthetically pleasing wild garden must have balance. While there are many beautiful North American wildflowers, a garden consisting solely of wildflowers would be weedy and jarring to the eye. Enter ferns, mosses, and grasses.

Cullina's book is an indispensable guide to the world of ferns, mosses, and grasses native to North America. These types of plants can be particularly important when establishing a meadow, prairie, or woodland for the first time, because they can help out-compete undesirable weeds. He gives extensive, opinionated insights into a wide range of species and includes sections on propagation and lists of species for particular environments (cool-season grasses, warm-season grasses, wet, dry, etc.). This is much more than an encyclopedia; its information goes far beyond what you could read on websites like plants.usda.gov and wildflower.utexas.edu.

If you hadn't thought much about gardening with grasses, sedges, and other "non-showy" plants before now, you'll look at these plants in a whole new light. This is the first of Cullina's books I've read, and now I'm off to buy his other two books on native plants.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Julie MacNary on July 20, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When it comes to native vegetation, Cullina,s books are the bible for me. This is no exception. He's taken on ferns, grasses and mosses all of which are hard to differentiate and different in the way they propogate. He,s done a masterful job in helping me identify them, know where to plant them and how to propogate them.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Funky Chicken on July 11, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I love this book! I have been taking it with me everywhere. It's beautiful, written in a very personable style, and contains tons of information and insight about a pragmatic approach to gardening - using native plants, most of which are happy in the shade (which I happen to have a lot of, and don't want to change!). If you're tired of "fighting city hall" in the shady spots in your yard, this is a great source of inspiration and fresh perspective.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Lucinda M. Reynolds on November 19, 2008
Format: Hardcover
From the introduction, through the explanation about native plants through the excellent photos and descriptions of each plant, this book informs the reader about different important aspects of native ferns, moss and grasses. The chapter "Ferns and Fern Allies for Various Uses and Conditions" as well as the similar one on grasses, sedges and rushes lists specific plants & the sites they are best suited for optimum growth.

It is a book I highly recommend for a gift to yourself or to gardening friends.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sally Marcum on March 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book first, and was so intrigued by the style and knowledge of author William Cullina. I bought other books on the broad topic of Native Plants by this author. This book is about woodland plants that are native shade loving plants. A book for the library for anyone wanting to learn from a master teacher/writer about the natural world of plants.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Terry C. Plumb on September 8, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Cullina knows whereof he writes. This is a valuable resource for anyone who is interested in using ferns, mosses or grasses in his landscaping. You are not going to find advice like this at your local nursery, much less a big box retailer.
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