An Encyclopedia of Shade Perennials by W. George Schmid

By W. George Schmid

Discovering an array of special and numerous crops for coloration might sound like a frightening activity, with constrained ideas on hand to the gardener. colour perennial professional W. George Schmid dispels this notion in his new encyclopedia. This companionable reference presents info on greater than 7000 species and cultivars in 184 genera, from Acanthus to Woodwardia — a few new to horticulture, others unjustly neglected, yet all fantastically fitted to the colour garden.

Schmid has in the back of him a part century of sensible gardening event, horticultural schooling, and large trip gazing colour perennials of their local habitats; readers are accordingly handled to either valuable becoming advice and his own institutions with the crops. The specialist textual content is rounded out with 500 beautiful colour photos, many taken by way of the writer himself.

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This mix holds a lot of water during dry summers but also drains well during excessively wet periods. To fertilize or not Many cultivated garden plants are relatively heavy feeders. Wildflowers are not, however, and fertilizing at Hosta Hill is thus kept to a minimum. Nutrients can be added in many ways. Because they are absorbed at a fairly high rate, particularly by fast-growing perennials, the danger of overfertilizing is always present. So I use only one type of fertilizer, which contains nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and many required trace elements, such as magnesium, iron, and calcium.

Many perennials are fussy about how deep they are planted, so it will be necessary to dig the plants, amend the soil, screen it to remove tree roots, and then replant. In thriving gardens, plants may start to crowd each other out, so periodic digging is a must anyway. The soil of shady gardens under pines and oaks can become more acid in time, and it is prudent to test the acidity now and then. Judicious applications of pelletized lime can correct conditions of too much acidity. Some plants are very sensitive to lime; use caution whenever using lime in shady woodland gardens.

It is a known fact: the USDA hardiness zones as printed in most books, including this one, are approximate guides only. Their small scale makes it is impossible to include all the geographic details that modify the general outlines of the map. Many county USDA extension offices have larger, more detailed maps available for local areas. 48 The Shady Garden Beginning gardeners especially should pay close attention to all hardiness zone information available for their region. Determining the entire range of conditions for your garden is essential for success.

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