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Southern Shade: A Plant Selection Guide

Figuring out what to grow in the shade is challenge enough. Throw in factors that affect southern gardeners, and the topic becomes as thorny as wild blackberry. Shade varies at different times of day, and gardeners need to take this into account. Shade changes from season to season, too, even within the same yard. In Southern Shade: A Plant Selection Guide, landscape expert Jo Kellum takes the mystery out of the murky parts of the yard. Some plants desire rich, moist soil, decaying leaves, and just a bit of sunlight that filters through leafy tree canopies. Others need shade all day long. Still, others thrive in morning shade, followed by afternoon sun or the reverse. Sometimes the soil beneath trees can be notoriously dry where tree roots absorb all the available moisture. Jo Kellum lets gardeners know what to grow in the gloom and illustrates her choices with over two hundred color photographs. Homeowners need advice about landscaping workhorses for the shade-trees, shrubs, groundcovers, and vines--in addition to annuals and perennials. Unfortunately, "shade gardening" seems to apply mainly to dainty plants that don't solve the problem of how to fill a wet, shadowy spot or how to block the view of the neighbor's air conditioning unit. Southern Shade helps the gardener pick the right plant for the right kind of shady area. There are recommendations for little flowers, big trees, and everything in between. Jo Kellum's advice is simple for beginners, yet complete enough for professionals. It makes an ideal companion when shopping. For those facing both shade and sun and looking for ideas suitable for sunny spots, Kellum has also written Southern Sun: A Plant Selection Guide. Jo Kellum is a landscape architect, writer, and photographer based in Signal Mountain, Tennessee. She has authored regional editions of Landscaping 1-2-3 for Home Depot Books and gardening and landscaping titles in Ortho's All About series. Her work has appeared in Southern Living, Landscape Architecture Magazine, Country Gardens, Renovation Style, and other magazines.

Paperback: 160 pages

Publisher: University Press of Mississippi (March 1, 2008)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1934110485

ISBN-13: 978-1934110485

Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 0.6 x 11 inches

Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #1,323,728 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #56 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Shade #195 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > By Region > South #261 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > By Climate

I have a lot of shade and have tried for five years to select plants here and there to liven it up. I've read every article and book in the library or bookstore I could get my hands on for help. I found some good ones but this book is a very practical guide. It's to the point - I don't need an encyclopedia - just some guidance- and this covers the key points very well. My favorite part is the "pairs well with" section. This has helped me design mixed beds and borders that are starting to look awesome! I highly recommend this book!

I find this book, Southern Shade and its companion, Southern Sun, to be excellent resources for the Southern gardener. Both books provide many plant options - some that perhaps you haven't thought of - which are beautifully photographed. The books are laid out in a way that makes them easy to read and access. I would recommend investing in both so that you have a complete outdoor gardening guide - they make great gifts, too!

As a shade loving gardener, I found this book delightful. Not only is it very specific, but it is fun to browse through. It's always a challenge to find something new to grow in shade, but Jo does a great job of giving the details. I especially liked the "getting acquainted" part of each plant guide. It helped with overview and selection.

I checked this book out of our library and have added it to my Wish List here. It's a valuable resource for southern gardeners with shade. I even learned that blue hosta do not fare as well as the green and gold varieties in our climate and heat which explains why the Elegans I planted last year wilted and parched. I found her articles on various shade perennials, annuals and shrubs very helpful as I try to landscape our creek and goldfish pond area which are shaded by deciduous trees.

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