The Winter Garden: Planning and Planting for the Southeast

H. Peter Loewer, Author, Larry Mellichamp, Joint Author
H. Peter Loewer, Author, Larry Mellichamp, Joint Author Stackpole Books $39.95 (208p) ISBN 978-0-8117-1925-4
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Gardeners traditionally turn their creative energies toward attractive warm-season displays and ignore the cooler months. Loewer and Mellichamp concentrate on extending garden interest through the winter months from Thanksgiving to April, asserting that ""the most beautiful garden is one that charms the gardener throughout the year."" Although the emphasis is on USDA Zone 6, gardeners in Zone 5 will be able to grow several suggested plants in protected microclimates. Winter-bound gardeners will enjoy the armchair opportunity to walk with the authors through several winter gardens and share the pride of owners extolling the virtues and exposing the vices of various plants. Practical information abounds in such chapters as ""The Beauties of Texture,"" ""Pods, Fruits, Plumes, and Berries,"" ""Flowers for the Winter Garden"" and ""Fragrance"" (yes, even in winter). Within each chapter, the authors list suggested plants and their growing habits, strengths and weaknesses alphabetically, by their conventional as well as their scientific names. The book is full of delightful tidbits (e.g., Iris foetidissima is sometimes called the roast beef iris because its crushed leaves smell like cooked meat). With suggested readings and 140 color photos, this is a thorough guide for winter gardeners in the American South. (Sept.)
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