Paperback: 408 pages
Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC; 1 edition (October 31, 2007)
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.9 x 10.8 inches
Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #324,076 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #34 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Shrubs #78 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Trees #238 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Landscape
I checked The Homeowner's Complete Tree and Shrub Handbook out of the library and fifteen minutes into reading it, purchased a copy online. I am a moderately experienced gardener, but have been looking for a guide like this.The book is huge and is filled with gorgeous photographs by Karen Bussolini.The author, Penelope O'Sullivan, writes with authority and a passion for trees and shrubs. For example, in "All about Magnolia" she writes: "Beauty and decay dance an endless tango in the garden. What's more poignant than watching magnolia petals unfold soft, smooth, and pure as a baby's cheek, then rot in a late spring frost? I love everything about these trees..."Part I is about design and was very well done. For example, a photograph depicting form is shown and is further illustrated with lines over the trees and shrubs to make the discussion crystal clear.The next section is a guide to help choose the best plants for specific landscape conditions. Shrubs and trees are listed for the different conditions.Next, how to buy plants, how to plant them and care for them properly. Each of these steps is illustrated with clear photographs.The following chapter discusses how to care for landscape plants. It includes diseases and insect pests.Finally, 348 trees and shrubs are described and O'Sullivan recommends her favorite cultivars.This is a book to read though to learn everything about trees and shrubs and a guide to pick the best plants. I plan to bring my book to the nursery to help me select the perfect cultivars for my property.By the author of the award winning book, Harmonious Environment: Beautify, Detoxify and Energize Your Life, Your Home and Your Planet.
I am an experienced gardener. This new book by Penelope O'Sullivan is a must have for gardeners. She writes in an easy to read style with lots of information on trees and shrubs that I find very useful. Many of the trees and shrubs discussed are newer selections not found in more typical gardening books, which I find particularly interesting. I love the personal notes and opinions sprinkled throughout the book based on her own experiences with many of the trees and shrubs discussed. She also provides lots of information on use, care and designing which I find informative and I am sure will be especially helpful for people starting their gardens. The photography by Karen Bussolini is superb. If I could only have a small number of gardening books, this book would definitely be one. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in gardens.
Unlike the previous reviewer, I am not an experienced gardener. More the reason to own Penelope O'Sullivan's book, The Homeownwer's Complete Tree and Shrub Handbook. It is very clearly written, demystifying topics such as garden design, plant care and plant selection. An encyclopedic listing of plants, augmented by the beautiful photograghy of Karen Bussolini, is extremely helpful identifying the exisiting plants on my property and will undoubtedly be indispensible selecting plants for future projects. This is a must have book for anyone interested in gardening.
While browsing through tree and shrub books at Barnes and Nobles, this one by far was the most complete. So good I had to have it and bought it on . Not only does it give you regular text book definitions of everything, the author gives her personal opinions and incites (in my case Red Maples), which is hard to find. For ex. what shrubs/trees will work in what soils and what trees might be more acceptable to disease, and so on. Don't expect to have a detailed page for every single tree out there, but it is still a great resource and should have what your looking for. My only complaint is the Glossary. If you look up "Red Oak", you'll probably find "please look up (scientific name)". Unfortunately most tree/plant book's Glossaries are like this, so I am not going to blame the author. Since the publication date is relatively recent, the pictures are pretty decent.
The best gardening books tend to be the ones in which the author is not afraid to be opinionated, and feels free to express affection or dislike of a plant, show a little personality, etc. This book fits that bill. I found the author's advice regarding techniques, landscape design, and plant selection to be practical and wise. The species references in the back of the book are quite detailed and the author has good tastes in plants. Wish more gardening books were this good.
This book has been quite helpful in selecting shrubs. It has a lot of information. Although I was disappointed that many new varities are not included.
There are plenty of books on lawns and flowers but trees and shrubs are equally important, and the author is passionate about them. Three in-depth sections cover the design, care and plant profiles of gardens with a focus on trees and shrubs, moving from the basics of incorporating them into an overall garden design to considering expectations of results and growing conditions. An encyclopedia of hundreds of tree and shrub options offers a host of fine images by Karen Bussolini while plant profiles cover ease of maintenance, cultivation, availability, growth rare and more. Libraries strong in homeowner's garden guides need this.Diane C. DonovanCalifornia Bookwatch
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