Helen Popper and Katherine Greenberg
offer a double header for native plant enthusiasts with California Native Gardening: A Month-by-Month Guide (UC Press, $29.95 paper) and Growing California Native Plants, Second Edition, Expanded and Updated, with Marjorie G. Schmidt, author, and Beth Merrick, illustrator (UC Press, $26.95).
Helen Popper provides detailed, calendar-based information for both beginning and experienced native gardeners. Each month’s chapter lists gardening tasks, including repeated tasks and those specific to each season. Popper offers planting and design ideas, and explains core gardening techniques such as pruning, mulching, and propagating. She tells how to use native plants in traditional garden styles, including Japanese, herb, and formal gardens, and recommends places for viewing natives. An essential year-round companion, this beautifully written and illustrated book nurtures the twin delights of seeing wild plants in the garden and garden plants in the wild.
First published thirty years ago, the long-awaited second edition of Growing California Native Plants is the ideal hands-on native plant guide for both experienced and novice gardeners. In addition to the voluminous knowledge contributed by Marjorie G. Schmidt, now deceased, Katherine L. Greenberg has taken note of the vibrant state of today’s horticultural scene, adding plants and ideas that were little known when the book first appeared. Lavishly illustrated with 200 new color photographs, drawings, maps, and charts, this concise and easy-to-use reference covers trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals, bulbs, grasses, and vines, and includes a plant selection guide for quick reference. The authors, whose combined experience spans six decades, take California’s summer-dry climate and restricted water supplies into account and provide helpful notes on companion plants and gardening with wildlife. Practical and informative, Growing California Native Plants is a valuable reference for gardeners and a great guide for identifying plants in the wild as well.