Ahh.. sitting down with some gardening books on a cozy winter's evening..
A online Gardening Book Review is going on over at the blog Roses and Other Joys, and I decided to join in the fun this month. I wanted to review a new book that I got, but sadly have not finished it! The problem is, there is so much I want to read about, I am usually flipping through/reading several gardening books, mixing and matching to suit my mood.
We won't even talk about the magazines...
So I am going to review one of the earliest gardening books I got a few years ago - one that I have actually finished reading! It is quite a fun book (interactive even!), and suits the mood of my garden reading style quite well:
The Mix and Match Garden Color Guide to Annuals and Perennials (whew, that's a name!) is by Graham Strong and Alan Toogood and has a lot of great advice about combining plants in the garden. It talks a lot about all the basics, combining colors, shapes, and plant textures for great combinations of plantings. It talks about pattern, repetition, and scale when planting flower beds. Then comes the good part - it shows some really great combinations of plants and gives several great projects to do as well as several small garden designs, all with fabulous pictures.
The picture above is one of my favorite in the book, as it started my love affair with ranunculuses (also called Persian buttercup). I had never seen a ranunculus before reading this book, and after seeing this picture I just had to get some the next spring.
|My yellow ranunculuses|
Ah, but we're not done yet!
After the fabulous small garden designs and little plant combining projects comes the fun, interactive part of the book...
Photo flip cards!!
I love to flip through pictures in gardening books so this is a perfect book for me.
There are 240 photo flip cards that help the reader see how different plants would look grouped together. There are four cards/plants per page. The taller plants are in the top row, the middle sized plants are in the middle two rows, and the short plants are in the bottom flip cards. Thus you can get a better feel for how the plants would look in combination in the garden. The cards are mostly made up of annuals and perennials, but there is also a small section that includes shrubs.
|Would this combination look nice?|
On the other side of the page (on the back of the previous flip cards), it considerately gives all the planting information for that species.
Honestly, it's just fun to play with the cards and see what combinations one can come up with!
Now if I can just stop flipping through different books and finish one for my next garden book review...