Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyThe next wave in water gardening gathers momentum in this small but bountiful volume. More than a brief on the virtues of wetlands, this collection of instructive essays by experts shows how to create residential wet gardens by mimicking local marshes, bogs and streams. Here, to be in the contemporary thick of gardening means to be up to the elbow in muck and murky waterwhether it's a whiskey barrel marsh or a 20' 30' excavated pond. "More than an aesthetic flourish," observes Burrell, these gardens are ecosystems where hydrology (water's comings and goings) determines vegetation (which can be submersed and emergent), which in turn determines wildlife (which may fly, creep and swim). The contributers offer uncomplicated advice on installing rigid fiberglass and flexible plastic liners, transmuting tap water into healthy pondwater and constructing several water environmentse.g., converting roof-water run-off into a marsh or turning lawn turf into wet meadow. For each of six regions in the continental U.S. and southern Canada, 15 exemplary plants are profiled (including trees, shrubs, perennials, vines and grasses). Lists of additional varieties and nursery sources enhance the volume's utility. Having borne the reputation of messy, mosquito-infested no-man's lands, wetlands claim a nobler, deserved identity here. (June)
Library Journal - Library JournalPublishers have been generous with water gardening books in recent years, so to compete for shelf space, new titles should probably offer either comprehensive treatment or a fresh angle. Fortunately, each of the following titles does both. Horticultural consultant Robinson, who has written several books on water gardening, takes a practical, how-to approach to constructing water features and integrating them into the landscape. Color photos and drawings are used to splendid effect. Included are handy instructions for evaluating purchased plants and fish and for handling routine care and feeding, pests, and diseases. The book concludes with a catalog of plants organized by their function in the garden (submerged, floating, or marginal). Recommended for most gardening collections. Part of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's "21st-Century Gardening" series, The Natural Water Garden also reviews the basics of installing water gardens, but its value lies in examples of specific wetland gardens. An intriguing example is the "stormwater marsh" created in a Virginia garden by directing rainwater from a roof into the bed via plastic tubing. Concluding chapters catalog wetland plants indigenous to six regions of the United States and list specialty nurseries. This book should appeal to adventurous gardeners and anyone concerned about wildlife gardening and habitat reconstruction.Beth Clewis Crim, Prince William P.L., Va.
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