With temperatures dropping, it is the perfect weather to cozy up with a hot drink and dive into a good book. Below, some of our staff offer their favorite horticulture related books for you to read this winter. Add some of these on the Christmas list and have good reading material to last you until springtime!
– PLANT by Phaidon. Senior horticulturist Katie Dickson tells us that this is an unbelievable compilation of botanical art of all mediums (painting, pressing, photography, etc.) across centuries, made by artists from all reaches of the world. “It’s not just a pretty coffee table book,” she assures.
– A Guide to the Wildflowers of South Carolina by Douglas Alan Rayner and Richard Dwight Porcher. “For those of us living in South Carolina, there is no better book to have in the field,” says Robby Davidson, native plant specialist. “Porcher does a great job of going over the native plants of the state along with the different habitats in which they can be found,” he explains.
– Grow More With Less: Sustainable Garden Methods by Vincent Simeone. Brendan Huggins, horticulture supervisor, says that this is a really good resource for planning and implementing sustainable practices. It also begins the exploration of plants’ relationship with the soil. For home gardeners especially, this is a great for explaining terminology.
– The Art of Gardening: Design Inspiration and Innovative Planting Techniques from Chanticleer by R. William Thomas. Executive director Carlo Balistrieri recommends this book and the garden that inspired its creation. “The one on Chanticleer is an amazing book about an amazing garden. The entire staff was involved in its preparation and it shares many of the tips and techniques that make Chanticleer a must-see garden,” Carlo says.
– Plant Driven Design by Scott Ogden and Lauren Springer Ogden. “Scott is an incredible horticulturist and this book contains a wealth of knowledge on sustainable plantings and diversity,” offers education and events manager Rebecca Turk.
– Elements of the Nature and Properties of Soils by Nyle Brady and Ray Weil is the first of two info-packed options from research horticulturist Kirk Laminack . “Soil science is vitally important regardless of what you’re growing and this book has all the information you need,” he says. “I know it’s a textbook…. and I’m a nerd,” Kirk admits.
– Peterson Field Guide to Eastern Forests is his next choice. “All of the Peterson Field Guide books are great depending on where your interests lie,” Kirk explains. “This one does a great job of describing each forest as a whole and also including things other than plants.”
– Garden Bulbs for the South by Scott Ogden. This is another recommendation from Rebecca Turk, and our second selection from Ogden. It examines many of the bulbs that grow, and thrive, in Southern climates.
– Bizarre Botanicals by Paula Gross and Larry Mellichamp. This book features incredible plants—including one that has pyrotechnic spores. “This book would be perfect for the person trying to add some excitement and oddity to their garden,” says Roberta Burns, events and marketing coordinator.
– Grow Your Own Drugs by James Wong. This is Katie’s #1 handbook for holistic, homemade botanical remedies for anything that ails. “Think goji berry chicken cayenne soup, lavender hops sleeping pillows, salves and lotions… there are so many healing compounds that are derived from the earth, and this book celebrates that,” she says.
– Japanese Garden Notes: A Visual Guide to Elements and Design by Marc Peter Keane. Carlo also finds the Keane book to be especially enjoyable. “The book’s value to gardeners far exceeds what its modest title conveys. It is a rich source of information and advice for ANY kind of garden and not only those that are “Japanese” or so inspired,” he says. Carlo has also recently reviewed this book on his blog, which can be found by clicking here.
– Natural History Essays by Henry David Thoreau is another recommendation from horticulture supervisor Brendan Huggins. “This book helps us remind ourselves to get outside and connect with the world around us,” he reflects.
– The Beekeeper’s Bible by Richard Jones and Sharon Sweeney-Lynch: “This book has an amazing modern take on beekeeping, truly a textbook “bible” for expert and novice keepers alike… fabulous color photos, history and folklore, bee care practices, and even honey-centric recipes!” says Katie Dickson, senior horticulturist.
If you’d like to learn more about the staff who recommended these books, click here to read our staff bios. As always, we’d love to have you plan a visit to see Moore Farms Botanical Garden. Come see us at our free winter garden open on Saturday, December 2nd from 8AM-3PM.