Gardening with Grasses

Overview


Ornamental grasses are among the most versatile and sophisticated of garden plants. Planted as single specimens in beds or on the terrace in a container, grasses are striking focal points. Smaller forms bring rhythm and diversity to mixed borders, and clumping forms richly carpet the ground. This beautifully illustrated book by two imaginative garden designers will provide equal measures of information and inspiration.
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Overview


Ornamental grasses are among the most versatile and sophisticated of garden plants. Planted as single specimens in beds or on the terrace in a container, grasses are striking focal points. Smaller forms bring rhythm and diversity to mixed borders, and clumping forms richly carpet the ground. This beautifully illustrated book by two imaginative garden designers will provide equal measures of information and inspiration.
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Editorial Reviews

Bloomsbury Review
"This is truly finesse gardening made attainable by anyone who chooses to try."—Bloomsbury Review, February 1998
Horticulture
"Shows us how to use these graceful plants with flair and intelligence ...

... It will be the rare gardener who comes away from Gardening with Grasses without a determination to make his or her garden a grassier place."—Thomas Fischer, Horticulture, February 1998
— Thomas Fischer

Horticulture - Thomas Fischer
"Shows us how to use these graceful plants with flair and intelligence ...

... It will be the rare gardener who comes away from Gardening with Grasses without a determination to make his or her garden a grassier place."—Thomas Fischer, Horticulture, February 1998

Booknews
This practical manual discusses ornamental grasses; plant association; techniques for growing grasses in gardens; and the use of grasses in lawns and meadows, for general ground cover, for borders, and to alter the arrangement of garden spaces. Provides a series of brief, descriptive entries on some 150 selected annual and perennial grasses, rushes, sedges, and bamboos. Includes numerous color photos. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780881924114
  • Publisher: Timber Press, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/15/1998
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 152
  • Product dimensions: 9.28 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Piet Oudolf is among the world’s most innovative garden designers and a leading exponent of naturalistic planting, a style that takes inspiration from nature but employs artistic skill in creating planting schemes. Oudolf's extensive work over 30 years of practice includes public and private gardens all over the world. He is best known for his work on the High Line and Battery Park in New York, the Lurie Garden in Chicago's Millennium Park, Potters Field in London, and his own private garden at Hummelo in the Netherlands.

Michael King is a garden designer, photographer, and author who runs a garden advice bureau from Amsterdam. He is constantly evaluating new garden perennials and new ideas in landscape and garden design, and his ongoing areas of research include the latest trends in planting design and the introduction of garden worthy perennials. A British native, he became immersed in his lifelong passion for gardens and plantsmanship while working at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, as secretary to the board of trustees. In addition to designing gardens, he has written many articles on plants and planting design and is the author of five books.

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Read an Excerpt


Smothering the ground with plants minimizes the possibility of weed seedlings becoming established. Any number of plants can be used in this way, as long as they are planted close enough together. The term ground cover is normally applied to low-growing plants used to fill in the spaces between other plants, but the lawn, the meadow and naturalistic plantings, already discussed, are all also examples of ground-cover plantings. Once established, ground covers are low on maintenance but initially, whilst the plants are developing, they can require a lot of attention, particularly the need to remove weed seedlings which appear between the plants.
In less formal areas of our gardens the lawn may be replaced with ground-covering ornamental grasses as these usually require less maintenance. Also, lawn grasses often present problems when grown near to trees. Too much shade, or soil that is sucked dry by tree roots, are frequent causes of lawn failure. A well-chosen ground cover should in the long term generate less work and either look as good or better than the lawn it replaces,. The woodrushes are an ideal evergreen candidate for a wide range of difficult garden situations.
Luzula sylvatica

will rapidly cover the dry, shady ground under established trees, producing a lush and healthy sward about 45cm/18in high. Other less vigorous species might just as well be chosen. Where attractive white spring flowers are desirable,
L. nivea

, reaching a height of 30cm/12in, produces a neat and glossy cover; for a similar, but very low covering,
L. luzulina

cannot be bettered; for large areas
L. pilosa

, a weed in some gardens, quickly forms impenetrable mats of vegetation.
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Table of Contents

Foreword 6
Preface 8
Introduction 12
True grasses 15
Rushes 16
Sedges 17
Pt. 1 Versatile Grasses 18
Lawns 22
Meadows 25
Planting styles 28
Ground cover 34
Specimen plants 40
Grasses to associate with buildings and landscape features 48
Creating moods 54
Grasses in association with water 59
Grasses in containers 62
Cold and warm season grasses 65
Pt. 2 Plants to Combine with Grasses 66
Harmonious associations 70
The umbellifers 79
Contrasting combinations 82
A medley of autumn hues 92
Winter stems and silhouettes 99
Pt. 3 Grass Borders 104
The Domburg border 106
The Hummelo border 108
Pt. 4 Growing Grasses 110
Pt. 5 Selected Plant Catalogue 114
Annual grasses 116
Perennial grasses, rushes and sedges 118
Bamboos 138
Appendices 142
Synonyms 142
Suppliers 143
Bibliography 144
Hardiness zones 145
Index 146
Acknowledgments 152
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