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50 High-Impact, Low-Care Garden Plants Paperback – January 7, 2009
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“For those gardeners who love plants but lack the time to spend hours in the garden, this is an excellent book.” —American Gardener
“Gardeners who want the wow without the work will find plenty of ideas in Tracy DiSabato-Aust’s new book.” —Akron Beacon Journal
“Proves that low-maintenance doesn’t mean low-interest. Tracy has packed the book with traffic-stopping garden stars that require less care and less fuss. Now you can actually find time to enjoy your garden!” —Garden Home
“DiSabato-Aust has created a checklist of flowers and shrubs, fruits and vegetables that combine toughness, beauty and durability. These practical attributes can save a gardener hours of work.” —Associated Press
“DiSabato-Aust’s experience with and passion for plants infuses every aspect of the book, from its engaging style to her discipline in keeping it short but thorough.” —The Oregonian
“This colorful guide gets right to the point, promoting the stars of the garden with a full-page close-up, a few smaller images, plus a fact and bio sheet highlighting why each deserves center stage in your garden.” —Seattle Post-Intelligencer
“A great book for novice gardeners or homeowners who wish to beautify their home with care-free plants.” —Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas
“A must-have because it will tell you when and how to prune your perennials for better vigor—and how to get them to bloom more than once a season where possible.” —Caledonian Record
“DiSabato-Aust is an approachable garden writer. She knows we all love to garden but that we have lots of demands on our time and need astute guidance, which she provides in this fantastic book.” —Idaho Farm Bureau Quarterly
“Sure to find a place on the shelf and in the heart of every gardener.” —Marion Star
“Guaranteed to help . . . . readers “create their dream garden”. . . . The book has stunning photography, its organization is good, and there’s a brief informational box on each plant along with a longer, more detailed description.” —Charleston Gazette
About the Author
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With the publication of this book, Tracy Disabato-Aust has given us a gift. For the novice gardener, the author supplies a list of plants that will help create an eye-catching low-maintenance garden. The seasoned gardener, on the other hand, may discover several plants previously ignored but still worthy of consideration. The reader should bear in mind that the plant list comes with the usual restrictions based on the amount of sunlight and humidity available in ones garden as well as recommended hardiness zones.
According to the author, and we gardeners are all in agreement, a plant must exhibit the following five characteristics to be considered high impact:-
* Multi seasonal interest
* Colorful foliage
* Long lasting bloom
* Outstanding texture
* Architectural form
In addition, there are 12 traits that the author looks for in evaluating low-maintenance plants. Each of the 50 mentioned in this book demonstrate at least 10 out of the 12 traits:
* Long lived
* Tolerance for heat and humidity
* Cold hardy
* Deer resistant
* Insect and disease resistant
* Minimal or no deadheading
* Thrives without heavy fertilization
* Requires no staking
* Infrequent or no division required for four years or more
* Infrequent or no pruning required to maintain neat appearance or best flowering
* Drought tolerant.
This is a very welcome publication because the topic contributes to the dialogue on sustainable gardening. There is a movement in the landscape community to try and develop gardens that require very little resources such as water or fertilizer and that require almost no maintenance to keep them alive. The list of plants in this publication addresses these issues admirably.
Another welcome trait of this book is the opportunity offered to the reader to discover important plants that might have been overlooked. This reviewer was delighted to learn about a cultivar of a perennial that is hardly known in the gardening community. It is called Thalictrum Erin. I have always been a Thalictrum fan and I grow a lot of it in my garden. But I have never seen anything quite like this one. It is the tallest of all Thalictrum, growing up to 96 inches in height without staking and yet never exceeding 36 inches in width. My "eureka" moment occurred as soon as I found this information in the book. Now, I need to find this plant for my garden.
In order to understand how Ms, Disabato-Aust compiled the list of 50 plants; it is helpful to study her style of landscaping. Hers are exquisitely designed gardens that are not just flower beds but are, instead, foliage and textural compositions that include shrubs, trees and perennials. All of the plants used in the authors work are chosen for the synergistic effect they have on the viewer when seen as a whole. The reader should feel confident that by selecting from her list, it is possible to create an attractive garden.
Tracy Disabato-Aust has earned international acclaim as one of America's most entertaining and knowledgeable garden writers and professional speakers. This book is just one of her many accomplishments.