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Perennials: The Gardener's Reference Hardcover – Illustrated, March 1, 2007

4.4 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

The gardening world is constantly being invigorated by plant introductions, and the Pacific Northwest is arguably one of the premier horticultural landscapes. Hailing from Seattle, the expert authors are perfectly placed to guide novices, professionals, and hopeless hortoholics looking for hot new plants. This appealing compendium of nearly 3,000 plant entries offers engrossing, high-spirited commentary to help in selecting and caring for vast arrays of species and cultivated varieties. Background information accompanies cultural advice, helping to take the mystery out of cultivating herbaceous blooming beauties, semievergreen selections rising from rhizomes, vigorous ground covers, and dramatic foliage specimens. And easy-to-follow charts aid in the understanding of Anemones and other such large genera. Common names, plant sources, and recommended reading complete entries from Acaena to Zantedeschia, making this exceptional resource a must-have for library collections. Alice Joyce
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved


Beautiful enough for a table-top book with stunning photographs by Lynne Harrison. ... The individual genera are beautifully illustrated as well. -- Linda Urbaniak Mercer Island Reporter 20070301 An accessible, information-packed treasury of garden-worthy plants. ... This book is an appealing new acquaintance which appears quite likely to grow into a very best friend. -- Kelly Sundberg Seaman BookPage 20070301 This is the book that Northwest gardeners have been asking for and at long last it is here. Written by three esteemed Northwest gardeners that have world wide fame ... [it is] the perennial information guide. ... Whether you're a beginner, an expert, or a professional, you will turn to this book time and again for essential information. -- Scott Conner AM1090Seattle.com 20070210 This comprehensive guide ... provides easy-to-access information on plant hardiness, soil and sun preferences, bloom time, propagation, pests, and more. For each entry, one of the gardeners weighs in with his or her personal advice on the plant, based on years of experience. Always this advice is useful, and often its entertaining, too. ... This book is a keeper! -- Barbara Lloyd McMichael Kitsap Sun 20070429 I highly recommend this book to every gardener who ever thought of buying a perennial plant - because if we all followed the advice found on these pages, every garden would be beautifully maintained and blooming year-round. -- Marianne Binetti Seattle Post-Intelligencer 20070429 A tome of a hardback, packed with charts, photos, and detailed techniques, a reference you'll turn to again and again throughout the seasons. -- Valerie Easton Seattle Times 20070520 Hurry and get yourself a copy of Perennials: The Gardener's Reference. You won't regret it. -- Karen Preuss Northwest Garden News 20070601 Supersedes all other books on the subject currently residing on the shelf. The practical hands-on advice is inspiring and refreshing. -- Dan Hinkley Pacific Horticulture 20070701 If you like to go to the garden center with a good idea about which plants will do best in your garden, this volume on herbaceous perennials - it includes 2,700 plants in 250 genera - is one that belongs up there with Michael Dirr's Manual of Woody Landscape Plants. -- Richard Churchill People Places Plants 20070701 A must-have reference manual. It has a special chapter on plants for special gardens, which is extremely helpful. -- Linda Cobb Spartanburg Herald-Journal 20070731 Salient details on selecting, planting, and nurturing more than 2700 species and cultivars of herbaceous perennials are packed into this richly illustrated volume of gardening wisdom. ... Gardeners are certain to find this an invaluable source. An essential reference tool; recommended for all public libraries. -- Donna L. Davey Library Journal 20070801 The most encompassing and practical directory of perennials. ... With descriptions of over 2,700 species and cultivars, this exhaustive work will be useful for both beginning gardeners and weathered experts. -- John Bagnasco Garden Compass 20070901 The best source for instructions on which plant needs dividing when in our unique climate. -- Valerie Easton Seattle Times 20070919 Of course it is a perfect fit for gardeners of the maritime Northwest, but the on-the-job commentaries make this book useful to gardeners in almost any temperate climate. -- Brian Thompson Washington Park Arboretum Bulletin 20071001 Those who love flowery landscapes will happily devour [this book]. ... The luscious photographs by Lynne Harrison bring this outstanding reference to life. ... These pages hold a treasure-trove of specific information about less common perennials rarely mentioned even in reference books of this type. -- Ann Lovejoy Seattle Post-Intelligencer 20071011 A well-illustrated, extensive encyclopedia of herbaceous perennials that can be successfully grown in the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere in the continental U.S. -- B.K. Lym Choice 20071101 For the serious and experienced gardener - the kind who can handle a book organized by plant families and botanical names. -- Beth Botts Chicago Tribune 20071125 Finally, in one comprehensive book, find the best time to deadhead, cut back, divide, transplant, and fertilize (or not fertilize) over 2,700 perennial species. ... Provides all the important cultural information on each perennial, plus personal commentary about plant habits. -- Maia Eisen Tacoma East King Trailhead 20070101 Seattle-based gardeners Carter, Carrie Becker, and Bob Lilly have co-authored a practical A-Z guide to perennials that gardeners will find both stimulating and easy to use. SciTech Book News 20071201 It's a good sign when you open a plant encyclopedia and the first plant is one of the best. ... As gardeners, we've scored with this book. -- Kym Pokorny Homes + Gardens Northwest 20071201 Use this book to identify new and outstanding performers. Then just Google their names to find mail order sources. It's never been so easy to get the best garden plants! -- Carol Stocker Boston Globe 20071213 A well-illustrated, comprehensive guide to perennials. ... I particularly like the personal comments by the authors interspersed throughout the text. -- Ethel Fried Manchester (CT) Journal Inquirer 20071109 Encyclopedic yet concise, witty and drop-dead gorgeous. ... This book will not only entertain and educate you, it will save you money, time, and frustration with its snappy prescriptions for what to select, which companions to group it with, where to plant it and how to make it thrive with a minimum of effort. ... Feels so smart, welcoming and celebratory that I can't wait for spring. -- Sarah E. Smith Oregonian 20071227

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 536 pages
  • Publisher: Timber Press, Incorporated (March 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0881928208
  • ISBN-13: 978-0881928204
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 1.6 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #694,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For all the information there is about plants, this book cuts to the core, and renders mini autobiographies of each plant in wondrous detail. This is no overview, but rather specific traits and needs of specific plants, and how to love them and make them happy. The photos are sensitive and detailed, and the individual plant descriptions are concise, clear and readable. This book has style and substance, and is sure to enrich the expert and instruct the rest of us.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I really like this book. I am a horticulture major. This book has helped me greatly when looking up plants for my classes. the one thing I like most is they list companion plants, which makes it much easier to know what plant will look good together, this is very hard to find. I have many books on perennials and this isa the only one that list the companion plants.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the best "one book" reference on Perennials I own. It covers a huge quantity of species and their cultivers. It is well detailed in the explanation of plant parameters- size, shape, habits, needs, etc- all covered.
there are many excellent photos and the Massings have an associated "key" to help you discern what is what. To the author from a 34 year professional; Well done!
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Format: Hardcover
A "big" book about perennials that fills the need for a comprehensive reference. The book includes 250 genera and about 2,700 species and cultivars. And given the flood of new plant introductions, the book is still fairly up to date. The format is extremely user friendly for garden planning or showing to commercial customers/clients. Organized by genus, each entry includes at least one color photo and notes about culture, management, propagation, pests/diseases, and companions for the genus. Especially valuable are the authors' opinions based on actual experience. The text for each genus is followed by a list of species and cultivars in chart form. In this format, it's a cinch to compare, for example, the characteristics of Agastache 'Apricot Sunrise' with A. 'Pink Panther.' Not a reprinted British edition, this is a book written by American-based horticulturalists and backed by the expertise of American publisher Timber Press. As a Zone 6 gardener in New England, however, I was a little disappointed with the emphasis on the Pacific Northwest and that fact that Zone 7 plants that won't survive my climate are included in the book. Nevertheless, all the common garden favorites are included. And if you want to look up something unusual such as Peltoboykinia, it's there as well.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very informative. Take it to the nursery for information on possible buys. Alphabetic, so easy to use. Information about invasivness especially helpful.Is up to date.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love this book. I have always enjoyed gardens and have done some gardening in the past - I finally have a little space to start from scratch and this has been a great help. The book lists the perennials by botanical latin but also has a very handy cross reference by common name. While the author's are from the Northwest, most of the plants listed can be used in USDA zones 3-9. I guess I might not buy this book if I gardened in Alaska, Hawaii or the extremely cold areas of the northern states. I like that the photo's are very clear and that each plant has a paragraph plus information regarding: Origin, preferred conditions, Management, propagation, pests and diseases, companion plants and notes.

This book has over 500 pages of great information about over 2700 spiecies and cultivars and has helped me both decide for and against some of them this summer.
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