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Gardening with Perennials: Lessons from Chicago's Lurie Gardenby Noel Kingsbury
Synopses & Reviews
For gardeners, inspiration can come from the most unexpected places. Perennial enthusiasts around the world might be surprised to find their muse in the middle of a bustling city. Lurie Garden, a nearly three-acre botanic garden in the center of Chicagoand#8217;s lakefront in Millennium Park, is a veritable living lab of prairie perennials, with a rich array of plant life that both fascinates and educates as it grows, flowers, and dies back throughout the year. Thousands of visitors pass through each year, and many leave wondering how they might bring some of the magic of Lurie to their own home gardens.
Withand#160;Gardening with Perennialsand#160;horticulturalist and garden writer Noel Kingsbury brings a global perspective to the Lurie oasis through a wonderful introduction to the world of perennial gardening. He shows how perennials have much to offer home gardeners, from sustainabilityand#8212;perennials require less water than their annual counterpartsand#8212;to continuity, as perennialsand#8217; longevity makes them a dependable staple.
Kingsbury also explains why Lurie is a perfect case study for gardeners of all locales. The plants represented in this urban oasis were chosen specifically for reliability and longevity. The majority will thrive on a wide range of soils and across a wide climatic range. These plants also can thrive with minimal irrigation, and without fertilizers or chemical control of pests and diseases. Including a special emphasis on plants that flourish in sun, and featuring many species native to the Midwest region,and#160;Gardening with Perennialsand#160;will inspire gardeners around the world to try Chicago-style sustainable gardening.
Since its opening on July 16, 2004, the Lurie Garden in Chicagoand#8217;s Millennium Park has attracted an enormous amount of attention. Hundreds, sometimes thousands, of people pass through it every day, often on a regular basis. This book enables and inspires them to do just that, while providing those who havenand#8217;t or wonand#8217;t ever visit the Lurie with a wonderful introduction to native gardening. It introduces readers to the art and science of perennial gardening, with a particular focus on native plants. Perennials offer more for the home gardener than any other group of plants. They are small enough to plant creatively in restricted spaces, and long-lived enough to develop continuity and improve the sustainability of the garden. This book introduces garden perennials, using the plants of the Lurie Garden as a guide. It is not aimed at being a comprehensive guide to perennials, but starts with the idea that the range of plants used in the Lurie Garden forms a good basis for home-owners new to growing perennials or indeed to the whole world of gardening. The range of perennials in the Lurie Garden is actually very wide, although with an emphasis on species that flourish in sun rather than shade. It also includes many regionally native species--more than half.
About the Author
Noel Kingsbury is a best-selling horticulturalist and writer. He is the author of many books, including Designing with Plants, Natural Gardening in Small Spaces, andand#160;Gardening with Perennials: Lessons from Chicagoand#39;s Lurie Garden,and#160;as well as the coeditor of Vista: The Culture and Politics of Gardens.and#160;He lives and gardens in western England near the world-famous book town of Hay-on-Wye.
Table of Contents
1. The Story of the Lurie Garden
2. Itandrsquo;s Either Freezing or Bakingandmdash;Gardening in a Midwestern Climate
3. Making the Garden a Better Place for Plants
4. Choosing Perennials for the Garden
5. Putting Plants Together
6. The Gardening Yearandmdash;A Guide to Essential Maintenance through the Months
7. The Wild, the Native, and the Cultivated
8. Plant Directory
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