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Gardeners know that structure is one of the most important elements in a successful garden design. Height is one way to add structure to a landscape. You can plant trees and shrubs, of course, but you also can use easy-to-grow perennials.
Giant Perennials is a fully illustrated guide to adding drama and scale to any garden using plants that grow to about 5 feet. Easy to use and featuring a handy, extended fold-over flap showing plant size, growing conditions, blooming time, flower or foliage, and height and spread, Giant Perennials includes:
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Susan Berry is a writer and editor specializing in gardening. She has written or co-written The Complete Guide to Gardening in Containers, Best Plants, Irises, and The Low Maintenance Garden. She also writes for Gardener's World, Homes and Gardens and She magazines.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
I have only a very small garden, some 50ft (15m) long and a mere l8ft (5.5m) wide, in which I grow a disproportionate number of very large perennials (although nothing like all of those that are featured in this book). My interest began when I first edited books written by Anthony Paul, a garden designer from New Zealand, whose passion for large plants and for large drifts of large plants characterize his work.
Until then, like almost everyone else, I had been more swayed by flower color than foliage power, and I saw the art of garden design as being more like painting than sculpture. Anthony has an unrivaled sense of space and place, however, and his own garden was a revelation to me, concentrating as it does on foliage plants, many of them giants. Anthony's work is imbued by a completely different sense of scale from that of any other garden designer whose work I have seen. Although it works brilliantly in enormous gardens like his own, it also translates even more effectively into very small gardens, where the effect is magical. Far from making the gardens seem smaller, these large plants, often planted in big groups, create a feeling of relaxed spaciousness.
Obviously, the success of any planting scheme relies on a mixture of heights and plant forms, but the fact that these giants are perennials, and therefore are around for only part of the year, creates a more exciting dimension in the garden-they bring a sense of the unexpected and of great surprise. Were the height achieved by shrubs alone, the picture would be more or less permanent throughout the year, with the obvious advantage that you would look out on the same landscape all year round, but the disadvantage that there would be no element of change or progress.
It is precisely the ability of nature to astound and delight us (and, it must be admitted, also to disappoint us!) that makes gardening such a fascinating and all-absorbing occupation. Nothing amazes and delights us more than to watch a plant grow before our eyes in a very short space of time, as anyone who has grown an amaryllis (Hippeastrum) or spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum), for example, will testify!
Many subtropical perennials are among the fastest growing plants, but those of us who garden in temperate climates and do not have greenhouses must concentrate on hardy or half-hardy plants. A few of the more tender giants are included in this book, but the majority of those included will survive light frosts, even if they won't survive the coldest climates.
About this book
The perennials included in this book are those that reach a height of around 5ft (l.5m) or more, although the term "giant" is somewhat arbitrary.
The directory of plants offers you a wide range of plants of this height for a wide range of conditions. If you check the symbols at the top of each entry, you can work out quite quickly which ones are likely to be suitable for the conditions in your garden (damp, dry, sun, or shade). They also give you some helpful clues about care. At the foot of each entry are some suggested planting combinations. Naturally not all of these are giant, since the aim of any planting scheme is to vary the heights.
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Book Description Firefly Books, 2003. Paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX1552977129
Book Description Firefly Books, 2003. Paperback. Condition: New. First Edition - may be Reissue. Ships with Tracking Number! INTERNATIONAL WORLDWIDE Shipping available. Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory # 1552977129n