Got Shade? A "Take it Easy" Approach for Today's Gardener

Overview

"A masterpiece, full of charm and humor." —Dr. Rebecca W. Dolan, Director, Friesner Herbarium, Butler University

Whether it’s urban, suburban, or rural, nearly every property has some shade, if only on the north side of the house. Countless more are "blessed" with giant trees planted decades ago that screen out the sunlight. Under such conditions, you may think that it’s impossible to have an interesting garden without a lot of work. Not so if you are willing to learn about the plethora of easygoing horticultural...

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Overview

"A masterpiece, full of charm and humor." —Dr. Rebecca W. Dolan, Director, Friesner Herbarium, Butler University

Whether it’s urban, suburban, or rural, nearly every property has some shade, if only on the north side of the house. Countless more are "blessed" with giant trees planted decades ago that screen out the sunlight. Under such conditions, you may think that it’s impossible to have an interesting garden without a lot of work. Not so if you are willing to learn about the plethora of easygoing horticultural gems that don’t require full sun.

Most gardeners think only of impatiens and hostas for their shady areas, but shade gardening can be far more interesting, and even exciting—and you need not work too hard at it if you incorporate some lesser-known but easy-to-grow plants into your landscape. Judiciously mixing the common plants with the more unusual ones can help the busy, tired, or lazy gardener create a special and unique retreat.

Carolyn Harstad, author of the best-selling Go Native!, organizes this book around the principle that an interesting shade garden is well balanced and has a variety of plantings. Early chapters focus on designing the low-maintenance garden. Further chapters discuss small trees, shrubs, dwarf conifers, vines, ground covers, ferns, grasses, perennials, woodland wildflowers, spring bulbs, and annuals (yes, there are annuals that enjoy shade!).

She discusses hundreds of shade-tolerant plants hardy in Zones 4-8, suggests how they may be used and combined, and recommends methods to reduce garden maintenance—a universal concern in this fast-paced world. With its informative text, accurate drawings, and colorful photographs, this book is a "must have" for gardeners across much of North America.

Indiana University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Fine Gardener

""This is the best new book on shade since George Schenk's classic The Complete Shade Gardener."" —Fine Gardener

Booked Solid with Virginia C

"With its informative text, accurate drawings, and colorful photographs, this book is a 'must have' for gardeners across much of North America." —Booked Solid with Virginia C

From the Publisher
"This is the best new book on shade since George Schenk's classic The Complete Shade Gardener." —Fine Gardener

"This is an exciting book for gardeners tired of ubiquitous hostas and ferns in shade gardens." —Library Journal

"With its informative text, accurate drawings, and colorful photographs, this book is a 'must have' for gardeners across much of North America." —Booked Solid with Virginia C

Library Journal
This is an exciting book for gardeners tired of ubiquitous hostas and ferns in shade gardens. To create interest, Harstad combines common and exotic shade-tolerant plants with some underused natives. She's previously demonstrated her knowledge of natives in Go Native!: Gardening with Native Plants and Wildflowers in the Lower Midwest. Appropriate for Zones to 8, her new book recommends trees, shrubs, vines, ground covers, ferns, grasses, perennials, bulbs, and annuals. Descriptions include planting requirements, propagation, and sometimes a drawing or photo. Harstad is exceedingly clear about categorizing plants as upstanding citizens, aggressives, or thugs. Many plants will appeal to low-maintenance gardeners. Some inclusions may be elusive but are listed in the hope of increasing demand; Harstad gives a lengthy list of nurseries. Thoroughly researched, the book often alludes to well-known garden writers like Ken Druse and offers an extensive list of references. This would be a good companion to Barbara W. Ellis's Shady Retreats: 20 Plans For Colorful, Private Spaces in Your Backyard. Recommended for public libraries.-Bonnie Poquette, Shorewood P.L., WI Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780253216250
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press
  • Publication date: 8/15/2003
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.11 (d)

Meet the Author

Master Gardener, nature photographer, and popular lecturer, Carolyn Harstad is a member of the Garden Writers Association of America and a Landscape Design Consultant. She lives in Minneapolis.

Jean Vietor graduated from Indiana University in Fine Art. She has exhibited mostly nature paintings for 33 years. Her mediums include: watercolor, transparent acrylic, acrylic on canvas, computer art, and polymer clay art.

Indiana University Press

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Table of Contents

Preface: Using This Book
Acknowledgments
1. My Garden—Wild, but Civilized
2. How to "Take It Easy" and Still Make it Zing!
3. Garden Jewels: Small Trees for Shade
4. Best Friends: Shrubs for Shade
5. Good Things in Small Packages: Dwarf Conifers for Shade
6. Onward and Upward: Vines for Shade
7. Nature's Carpet: Ground Covers for Shade
8. Softly Elegant: Ferns for Shade
9. Upstanding Citizens: Grasses and Grass-Like Plants for Shade
10. Indispensable Allies: Perennials for Shade
11. Natural Beauty: Woodland Wildflowers for Shade
12. Incredible Packaging: Spring Bulbs for Shade
13. ...And the Last Shall Be First: Annuals for Shade
14. Final Thoughts: Not Just for Shade
Resources
References
Index

Indiana University Press

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