Synopses & Reviews
Gardening by the sea is unlike any other gardening experience in the world. The gentle, misty light, moderate climate, and natural beauty of the coast only make seaside gardens more beautiful. Add to that the pleasant memories of summers spent by the sea as a child, and the allure is irresistible for most any gardener or ocean-lover.
But aside from the scenic landscape and romantic setting are serious challenges to be overcome. The east coast is known for its extreme weather—storms blow in during the winter with gale-force winds, spraying sand and salt on every plant in their path. Even during the summer, high winds, fierce sun, and periods of drought challenge the toughest plants. Seaside gardens must be able to tolerate the elements and still look good.
Author Anne Halpin is a renowned garden designer and writer who lives on Long Island Sound. She navigates the rocky shores and sandy dunes of the East Coast from New England to South Carolina, showing readers how to plant and care for seaside gardens that work with the elements, not against them. Keeping in mind those who only dream of living by the sea, Halpin also offers portraits of successful seaside gardens up and down the coast, with stunning images from award-winning photographer Roger Foley.
"In this lushly illustrated how-to book, veteran gardener Halpin (Homescaping; etc.), herself a seaside gardener on Long Island, delves into the difficulties, pleasures and practicalities of gardening by the sea. She presents an overview of the geology and geography of the Atlantic coast from Maine to South Carolina and discusses the elemental challenges of seaside gardening wind, salt, flooding, sand and sun. Suggestions for ways to work with or overcome these conditions include finding and sheltering an appropriate garden site, using native plants, creating windbreaks and improving the often poor seaside soils. Halpin presents 'profiles' of 11 gorgeous seaside gardens varying in locale, from rocky southern Maine to marshy Maryland, and structure, some with formal and difficult-to-maintain plantings, others using native plants for low maintenance, with intriguing comments from the gardens' designers and caretakers about their failures, successes and passion for oceanside gardening. These gardens are mostly designed by landscape architects and professionally maintained, and may intimidate the DIY seaside gardener, but the book brims with practical information and lists of plants appropriate to particular situations. Almost half of the volume is devoted to an illustrated encyclopedia of seaside-compatible species, addressing hardiness, tolerance and recommended varieties." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Ann Halpin does a wonderful job describing the successes and challenges of beach gardening."—Ursula Sabia Sukinik, Washington Gardener, September-October 2006
"An encyclopedia guide to creating a variety of hardy landscapes. Inspirational, waterfront gardens along the East Coast are followed by advice on choosing perennials, grasses and tress, plus planting and maintaining them."
-- Waterfront Home & Design
"Beachfront gardening is unique and complex, but Halpin guides her fellow Long Islanders, offering planting and design advice, maintenance suggestions, [and] solutions to the biggest challenges."
"[This] well-written, beautiful book will help seashore gardeners deal with the special challenges of coastal conditions and enjoy the rewards."
The American Gardener
From New England to the Carolinas, gorgeous seaside gardens enhance the unique coastal landscape. Gardening by the sea, however, forces one to grapple with the reality of spraying salt and sand, high winds, fierce sun, and periods of drought that can seriously challenge both the toughest plants and the most determined green thumbs. Ann Halpin helps you design and grow your own thriving coastal garden with profiles of seaside-compatible species and expert tips on growing stunning plants in a variety of climate and landscape conditions.
About the Author
Anne Halpin is the author of 12 books, including Homescaping; The Year-Round Flower Gardener; and Annuals, Perennials, and Bulbs. Numerous articles by and about Anne have appeared in such publications as Horticulture, Country Gardens, Country Home,Woman's Day, and Homeowner. She lives in the Hamptons in New York.