The Gardener’s Guide to Prairie Plants

Univ. of Chicago. Mar. 2023. 644p. ISBN 9780226805931. pap. $35. GARDENING
Natural-lawn enthusiasts will rejoice at this incredibly thorough volume about native prairie plants. Prairie Nursery president/consulting ecologist Diboll and landscape designer/botanist/photographer Cox provide charts that detail what botanists and science-savvy gardeners need to know as they explore and plan a prairie garden. The book includes pictures of 148 selected plants in every phase of growth so that gardeners can identify each and avoid accidentally pulling new growth in the mistaken belief that it is a weed. There are also descriptions of the plants and instructions on how to recognize when plants have gone to seed. There’s even a section for novices about confusing look-alikes. And it doesn’t stop there. Curious gardeners can learn about pollinators and pests, expectations for specific fertilizers, safe ways to burn small or large prairie sections, and best practices for determining and adjusting the quality of the soil.
VERDICT An excellent addition to any library, this plant guide will prove to be a lasting resource for gardeners and nature lovers.
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