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Managing the Wet Garden: Plants That Flourish in Problem Places
     

Managing the Wet Garden: Plants That Flourish in Problem Places

by John Simmons
 

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Water is usually a gardener's friend, bringing lush plant growth and the sensory delights of fountains, streams, and ponds. But even gardeners can have too much of a good thing, and excess water can be hostile to plant life. Fortunately, John Simmons comes to the rescue with the definitive guide to managing a variety of wet garden sites.

Managing

Overview

Water is usually a gardener's friend, bringing lush plant growth and the sensory delights of fountains, streams, and ponds. But even gardeners can have too much of a good thing, and excess water can be hostile to plant life. Fortunately, John Simmons comes to the rescue with the definitive guide to managing a variety of wet garden sites.

Managing the Wet Garden dares gardeners to consider excess water an opportunity to cultivate an unexpectedly large and unique range of plants. Natural wetlands—water meadows, marshlands, and riverbanks—provide inspiration for practical water management, plant selection, and aesthetic considerations. In Part One Simmons provides readers with practical tips on how to recognize and manage a wet site. Part Two includes a detailed directory of water tolerant plants, including ferns, conifers, trees, shrubs, climbers, herbaceous plants, and bulbs.

Twenty years in preparation, Managing the Wet Garden will inspire readers to not only accept the challenge of too much water, but to appreciate the ample rewards.

Editorial Reviews

BBC Gardens Illustrated
“Plantsman John Simmons…brings us a vivid insight into the creation and management of the wet garden. He shares his expertise as he guides the reader confidently through what is a difficult environment in which to garden.”

Choice
“Though Simmons is writing about his experience with wet gardening in England, his information and advice are applicable to those wishing to establish, maintain, and enjoy wet gardens anywhere.”
From the Publisher
“Though Simmons is writing about his experience with wet gardening in England, his information and advice are applicable to those wishing to establish, maintain, and enjoy wet gardens anywhere.” —Choice

“Brings us vivid insight into the creation and management of the wet garden. He shares his expertise as he guides the reader confidently through what is a difficult environment in which to garden.” —BBC Gardens
 
Library Journal

Simmons, who was curator of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, from 1972 through 1995, shares his many years experimenting with growing plants in his own wet garden in Norfolk, England. He begins by telling how to recognize a wet garden site and then discussing garden microclimates. He goes on to cover designing a wet garden and selecting plants for it, then describes how to manage this special type of garden. The bulk of the book is an encyclopedia of plants suitable for wet soils, also including some plants that grow in moist woodland soils and some bog and water plants. He includes chapters on ferns and conifers; trees, shrubs, and climbers; and herbaceous plants and bulbs, with a brief final chapter describing bog and water plants. Entries include recommended species with cautionary remarks, if applicable, along with cultural and propagation information. He often includes USDA hardiness zones for the plants. As Simmons's growing conditions differ from those available in much of the United States, this book is recommended for specialty collections and those libraries in areas with a similar climate.
—Sue O'Brien

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780881929003
Publisher:
Timber Press, Incorporated
Publication date:
11/12/2008
Pages:
312
Product dimensions:
7.60(w) x 10.50(h) x 1.00(d)

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

John Simmons OBE VMH has had a long professional career in botanical horticulture managing large gardens and supporting wider interests of horticulture and conservation through honorary positions including presidencies and trusteeships with many related organisations. From 1972 until his retirement in 1995 he was curator at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, after which he directed the development of the arboretum at Castle Howard in Yorkshire. Fascinated by wet gardens and ponds since childhood, in 1986 he purchased a two-and-a-half-acre wet meadow in North Norfolk, England. This book stems from his subsequent experiences of developing a private garden on this ploughed but otherwise abandoned site.

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