Landscaping is all about climate and hardiness zones. That’s one reason that regional garden books can be very helpful when you’re choosing landscape plants. Whatever area of the country you’re in, there are bound to be some helpful regional guides. Here are some reviews for titles for various areas of the U.S.
Florida gardeners won’t go wrong with “Your Florida Guide to Perennials-Selection, Establishment, and Maintenance” by Sydney Park Brown et al from the University Press of Florida. This provides all the basics on gardening with perennials from choosing your site to selecting your plants and caring for them.
Featuring over 250 species, this perennial guide features color photos, hardiness zone, full descriptions, cultural needs, and the landscape uses for each plant along with special features they may have.
In addition, there is a chapter with very helpful lists of plants according to their flower color, special use in the landscape, etc.
For the Midwest, there are several garden titles from the Chicago Review Press that are very helpful. These include “The Best Flowers for Midwest Gardens” by Laara K. Duggan. This title features over 200 easy care plants suited to the area. The plant profiles include a complete description, sketch, and details on how to grow and propagate each plant along with its landscape use, winter hardiness, and other helpful information.
This comprehensive title has a whole section devoted to charts and tables that will make it easy for you to choose your plants by various features, such as flower color or ones for problem areas. The appendix also has lists of Midwest gardens to visit and a plant glossary.
For the Southeastern U.S., there’s a very comprehensive guide. “Southeast Home Landscaping” by Roger Holmes et al from Creative Homeowner Press that was so popular a new edition wit more plants and garden designs has been released. This series includes volumes for the Northeast, Northwest, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, California, and Texas. This particular title contains all the information you need for a successful landscape project, including profiles of over 200 plants, 54 sample garden designs, and individual landscape projects. Among the projects are garden ponds, walls, fences and other garden structures, walkways, and retaining walls. There are also helpful chapters explaining how to prepare your planting site, how to buy plants and transplant them, and how to care for them once they’re in place. The designs feature ones for all areas of the landscape. For each one, there’s a plant list, blueprint, layout, and details on each plant used in the design.
Throughout the book, there are color illustrated instructions for all the projects and designs. This volume contains around 400 full color illustrations.