Bloom's Best Perennials and Grasses
by Adrian Bloom
Timber Press, April 2010
List price: $34.95
No doubt you've heard of Blooms of Bressingham® plants, and perhaps you have a few of them growing in your garden. Now hear what Adrian Bloom, former owner of the business, has to say about perennials and grasses.
First of all, I liked this book because it has pictures. Yes, I can be swayed to choose a book that has fine photography, which Bloom's Best Perennials and Grasses certainly has. Adrian and Richard Bloom are both responsible for the array of stunning images which had me wanting one of everything in the book...maybe three. (It's a rule, you know.)
But in Chapter 3 - "Take Twelve Plants: A Key to Successful Gardening" - Bloom suggests starting with a mere 12 plants.
"Reducing the focus to twelve tried-and-true plants allows us to study and learn about a small group, each capable of creating drama in almost any garden, especially when enhanced by clever plant combination and good design."
And then he goes on to give examples of their use, both in this chapter and throughout the book, as he introduces a total of nearly 400 perennials and grasses to the gardener. And that's the second great thing about Bloom's Best. It's full of practical information that doesn't leave you hanging, not knowing what to do with it.
As a wrap-up, there are several tables and appendices, with such information as sources, plants for special purposes, and and of course, an index. While it looks at first like a coffee table book, Bloom's Best Perennials and Grasses is much more. It's a practical guide to design for beautiful perennial gardens.
Adrian Bloom is a lifelong gardener and past owner of the world-renowned Blooms of Bressingham nursery. Now he manages Foggy Bottom and other gardens at Bressingham in Norfolk, England, and writes, photographs and lectures about plants and gardening internationally.
He has been a television presenter on shows including BBC Gardeners' World and The Victory Garden for WGBH in the United States. In 1986 he was awarded the Victoria Medal of Honour by the Royal Horticultural Society and in 2002 the George Robert White Medal of Honor from the Massachusetts Horticultural Society.
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