Seedheads in the Garden

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Seedheads bring impact to late summer borders and linger to provide interest well into autumn and winter. They look dramatic set against a backdrop of fading flowers, associate well with grasses and native plants, and are key components of the naturalistic garden in which every phase of a plant is enjoyed from first shoot to final decay. After providing historical context, Noël Kingsbury explains how plants reproduce and participate in the garden's wider ecology, and explores seedheads' role in diverse gardens ...
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2006 Hardcover New 0881927961. New hardcover with no remainder mark. DJ light rubbing front and back. Professional service from a Main Street bookstore.; 10.70 X 9.40 X 0.70 ... inches; 144 pages. Read more Show Less

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Hardcover New Seedheads bring impact to late summer borders and linger to provide interest well into autumn and winter. They look dramatic set against a backdrop of fading ... flowers, associate well with grasses and native plants, and are key components of the naturalistic garden in which every phase of a plant is enjoyed from first shoot to final decay. After providing historical context, Noel Kingsbury explains how plants reproduce and participate in the garden's wider ecology, and explores seedheads' role in diverse gardens worldwide. At the heart of the book is a plant directory in which Kingsbury's hand-picked selection describes the particular characteristics of each plant's seedheads and grades them according to their value and persistence. Jo Whitworth's compelling photographs capture the individual character of each seedhead and open our eyes to the intricate shapes, tempting textures and dense monochromes of seedheads. Read more Show Less

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Overview


Seedheads bring impact to late summer borders and linger to provide interest well into autumn and winter. They look dramatic set against a backdrop of fading flowers, associate well with grasses and native plants, and are key components of the naturalistic garden in which every phase of a plant is enjoyed from first shoot to final decay. After providing historical context, Noël Kingsbury explains how plants reproduce and participate in the garden's wider ecology, and explores seedheads' role in diverse gardens worldwide. At the heart of the book is a plant directory in which Kingsbury's hand-picked selection describes the particular characteristics of each plant's seedheads and grades them according to their value and persistence. Jo Whitworth's compelling photographs capture the individual character of each seedhead and open our eyes to the intricate shapes, tempting textures and dense monochromes of seedheads.
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Editorial Reviews

Seattle Times
"This beautifully photographed book showcases the unusual textures and striking silhouettes of plants past their prime. ... If you aren't interested in the botany of seedheads, you'll find plenty of design ideas to keep you reading."
—Valerie Easton, Seattle Times, October 1, 2006
Garden Compass
"Garden books are often beautiful; they are often educational or useful. Less often they are all three. Kingsbury delivers the dramatic impact of nature's fantastic wombs."
—John Bagnasco, Garden Compass, September/October 2006
The Olympia Olympian
"Noël Kingsbury and photographer Jo Whitworth capture the shapes, textures and, yes, drama of plants gone to seed. ... But just as important as the appreciation lesson is the book's plant directory, the only directory of plants chosen for their spectacular seedheads."

—Sharon Wootton, Olympia Olympian, September 30, 2006

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780881927962
  • Publisher: Timber Press, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/15/2006
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 144
  • Product dimensions: 9.34 (w) x 10.88 (h) x 0.66 (d)

Meet the Author

Noel Kingsbury is a well-known designer, commentator, and writer on plants, gardens, landscape, and the environment. His doctorate in horticultural ecology from the University of Sheffield focused on the selection and management of ornamental perennials and he is still engaged in active research in this field. Noel is interested in combining natives and non-natives in ecological planting schemes and a passionate advocate for sustainable plant combinations that require minimal intervention from the gardener. He trials plants and gardens at his home on the border between England and Wales and travels widely.

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Read an Excerpt


A good way to start thinking about seedheads is to look at them in nature. Take a winter walk in an environment where you can find a wide variety of wildflowers: paths along the edges of woodland, grassland such as meadow or prairie, or even waste ground in areas of urban or industrial dereliction. See how many attractive or interesting-looking seedheads you can find. How many of them are worth picking to use in dried-flower arrangements back at home? How many might even be worth including in the garden, if you could be sure that they would take to cultivation? Take time to look for interesting shapes and forms, and notice how seedheads often make an impact because you see lots of them at once, and how they look in different kinds of light. Notice in particular how some are very dark, others very light; how some have hard, definite shapes and others are wispy and nebulous, and how these different characteristics can combine to form very attractive compositions.

Our aim is to encourage gardeners, garden designers, and landscape architects to consider how they can use plants with interesting seedheads in their work. The emphasis is very much on herbaceous perennials, for it is these that form the largest group of plants with good seedheads among the ornamental hardy flora. Seedheads — like flowers — form a substantial part of their visual impact, whereas they are little more than extra ornamentation on those woody plants which have them. The seedheads of herbaceous plants can also make a substantial contribution to the overall visual impact of a garden or other planted space from mid-autumn to the end of winter — and as such should be regarded as a major source of material for the planting designer.

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Table of Contents

Introducing seedheads 8
Botany and ecology 16
Designing with seedheads 28
Cultivation 60
Plant directory 68
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