The Bottom Line
- Beautiful photographs of native plants, which will help in identification.
- Both horticultural and design aspects explored.
- Quick reference charts help you determine suitable habitat for native plants.
- "Good Companions" section a bit skimpy.
- Besides the 5 main categories of information for each native plant, for some entries we're told what wildlife it attracts....
- Likewise, a Miscellany section present in some entries reveals interesting facts about, for example, the native plant's name.
- The full-page pics that crop up occasionally are helpful design-wise, as they show what groupings of native plants look like.
Guide Review - Native Plants Book
Lorraine Johnson's 100 Easy-To-Grow Native Plants is an introduction to growing the native plants found in three regions in North America: the Northeast, the Northwest and the prairie region running through the middle of the continent.
Have you ever admired a native plant you've encountered while walking out in the woods? Have you ever wondered if it would be feasible to grow that native plant in your own yard? 100 Easy-To-Grow Native Plants will help you answer the latter question. For each native plant discussed, five categories of information are included:
- Description (of the native plant's characteristics)
- Maintenance and Requirements
- Good Companions
- Related Species
The "Related Species" section allows you to broaden your choices, should you find it difficult to purchase the particular native plant discussed.
Meanwhile, the "Good Companions" category helps you figure out how to group native plants. Two native plants must, of course, share similar growing requirements if they are to be grown together. But such practical considerations aside, what about matters of design?
Johnson's attempt to identify which native plants "look good" together is admirable. Unfortunately, she's skimpy on the details, so we're left having to take her suggestions at face value. The book could be improved by devoting a bit more space to explaining exactly why native plant A looks good with native plant B.