Parking  |  Tickets  |  Donate

Designing Gardens with Flora of the American East

Designing Gardens with Flora of the American East
Carolyn Summers
Rutgers University Press
Publication Date: 

Paper, 221 pp., $23.95

Carolyn Summers begins chapter one with a question: “Why should we garden with indigenous plants?” This question is then followed by a quote from Charles C. Mann’s America, Found and Lost (2007), setting forth the theme of this book. The reader will gain a greater appreciation of what it means to provide for a sustainable environment through learning to select indigenous species for the garden. The author teaches about how the use of indigenous plants will help to:

  • Conserve resources and reduce maintenance
  • Maintain a healthy web of life
  • Maintain natural processes in our forests, wetlands, fields, and meadows
  • Maintain the ability of indigenous plants to reproduce
  • Preserve our regional aesthetic identity and sense of place
  • Prevent new infestations of invasive plants and disease
  • Provide the best available food and habitat for wildlife

The text provides useful lists of desirable plants that can be used in place of opportunistic varieties that have been imported over the years. This book is a welcome addition to the gardener’s library.

— Amy M. Lewitz, master gardener and plant information volunteer, Chicago Botanic Garden