The Complete Book of Ground Covers: 4000 Plants That Reduce Maintenance, Control Erosion, and Beautify the Landscape

Timber. Oct. 2022. 456p. ISBN 9781604694604. $50. GARDENING
Lewis, the owner of a retail and mail-order nursery, offers this excellent and attractive resource for gardeners, no matter the size of their plot. Opening chapters cover the hows and whys of using ground covers, with most of the book an alphabetical encyclopedia of plants by name. Entries give the botanical and common names, appropriate planting zones, origins of the plant (who knew lily of the valley came from China?), descriptions, growing instructions, and the specific purposes of each plant. That’s all accompanied by truly gorgeous color photos, most of which are credited to the author. While there is a sense of technical completeness to the book, the text has a friendly vibe that conveys a can-do attitude that encourages gardeners at all levels. Most useful are the lists of plants to use for specific conditions such as dry shade, full sun, and rain gardens.
VERDICT While the alphabetical order uses botanical names, the index includes the common names and refers to the proper page number. A great purchase for public libraries with lots of gardening patrons, and also for libraries at universities that teach horticulture.
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