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The Living Landscape: Designing For Beauty And Biodiversity In The Home Garden

Many gardeners today want a home landscape that nourishes and fosters wildlife. But they also want beauty, a space for the kids to play, privacy, and maybe even a vegetable patch. Sure, it’s a tall order, but The Living Landscape shows how to do it. By combining the insights of two outstanding authors, it offers a model that anyone can follow. Inspired by its examples, you’ll learn the strategies for making and maintaining a diverse, layered landscape—one that offers beauty on many levels, provides outdoor rooms and turf areas for children and pets, incorporates fragrance and edible plants, and provides cover, shelter, and sustenance for wildlife. Richly illustrated with superb photographs and informed by both a keen eye for design and an understanding of how healthy ecologies work, The Living Landscape will enable you to create a garden that is full of life and that fulfills both human needs and the needs of wildlife communities.

Hardcover: 392 pages

Publisher: Timber Press; First Edition edition (July 1, 2014)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1604694084

ISBN-13: 978-1604694086

Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 1.2 x 10.3 inches

Shipping Weight: 3.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #80,987 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #43 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Landscape #46 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > By Region #64 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Garden Design

Living Landscape is an important addition to the works on native gardening. The collaboration between Darke, a knowledgeable plantsman and designer of natural landscapes and Tallamy, an entomologist with a terrific understanding of ecosystems, is an excellent pairing.I trained as a landscape architect and have been frustrated by the gap between conservation theory at the university level and practical applications that could be helpful to the homeowner who desires a healthy landscape.The book takes one past the concept of reducing one's lawn to real examples of space planning and the use of plants to support diversity. Tallamy's first book, "Bringing Nature Home", made the critical link between the survival our native bird population and available insect protein for fledgling birds. Native insects have, of course, co evolved with native plants and primarily, require our native plants to survive. So there is a very important link between the native plants and our native bird populations. He makes the equally important point that homeowners can help bring back diminishing bird populations.The book is thoughtfully structured around design principles and ecological function. Observations of "Layers" in the wild landscape, including topics like the canopy, understory, waters edge and so on, are discussed relative to layers within the home garden. "The Art of Observation" is educational too. Significantly, among other valuable observations, Tallamy points out the importance of interrelationships of organisms, ecological function and ecological benefits for humans as well as wildlife, and the critical role of biological corridors.Yes, the book primarily approaches the larger suburban property, but it's principles are important to consider at any scale.

I heard Douglas Tallamy speak at the Native Plants Conference this Spring, and I've been eagerly awaiting his new book since.As a professional gardener at a top US Japanese garden, as well the writer of a garden blog focused on creating your garden sanctuary, I don't grow only native plants. In fact long ago, I was one of those turned off by the whole native plant movement.I have gradually over the years been turned into a convert. I now fully recognize the value of native plants in the landscape. It was Doug's monumentally important book Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants, Updated and Expanded that solidified my evolving views of how and why I should be pursuing my career and calling.His new book is lives up to his last."The Living Landscape" is more of a continuation of "Bringing Nature Home" than a replacement for it.If his first book made the case for using native plants in the landscape, this book shows you how in a general sense. This is not a "paint by number book" for creating a native landscape, but it is a broad and detailed covering of how and why it can be done. This also is not a dumb down book for the beginning gardener. By the same token, I can't imagine a better first book for someone looking to begin landscaping their home to read.I recommend it without reservation.Doug's coauthor, Rick Darke (author of "

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