Our mission is to share the wonders of the natural world by publishing books from experts in the fields of gardening, horticulture, and natural history. Grow with us.

Mountain chickadee. Dense shelter trees, such as pines, are critical for the survival of resident birds.

By observing the surrounding countryside in your region, birds present in remnant habitats, parks, and gardens, and researching the species that once lived in your area or passed through during migration, you can discover what species of birds are likely to be attracted to your garden. Then you can plan your garden to cater to their specific feeding, shelter, and nesting requirements.

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Richard Hager gardens so much and is so involved in the plant world that for years, I thought he was a professional gardener. Together, he and I, along with his lifelong and equally inquisitive gardening friend, Alfred Burnside (left), embarked on a restoration of a 1930s camellia garden. right The objects of daily life provide the structure of Richard’s garden.

Photograph by Augustus Jenkins Farmer for Deep-Rooted Wisdom.

Many of the best books on the shelves are inspired by nature, and many more are inspired by other nature writing. At Timber Press, a reverence for nature and a passion for gardening are never in short supply. After you come inside to wash the dirt off your hands, enjoy these brief excerpts from some of the best garden writing around.

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Make the thoughtful gift of Mother’s Day flowers last the rest of the year with inspiration from Caitlin Atkinson’s Plant Craft. After enjoying your bouquet in a vase for a few days, clip off your favorite blooms and follow these instructions for an easy, DIY decor makeover.

Click on image to enlarge, right-click to download and print.

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Click on image to enlarge, right-click to download and print.

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Click on image to enlarge, right-click to download and print.

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Pretty tough vines

by Timber Press on March 24, 2017

in Design, Gardening

Selecting tough plants is increasingly important in the age of climate change, so the experts at Plant Select® detail the most resilient, water-smart, and colorful picks for your home garden in Pretty Tough PlantsLearn more about the best vines for your garden and patio in this excerpt:

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In autumn 2013, the RHS prairie was a mass of lilac and purple from Aster turbinellus and Aster oblongifolius. Included photos by the author.

Using a distinct technique of sowing meadows from seed, James Hitchmough creates plant communities that mimic the dramatic beauty of natural meadows and offer a succession of blooms over many months. With case studies in some of the world’s most respected gardens, Hitchmough walks you though the gardening techniques and design strategies you need to capture this distinctive style in your own home garden.

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Rhododendron ‘Dawn’s Delight’ showing the typical round shape on a short trunk system with a clean centre free of dead wood. All included photos by Tony Kirkham.

Rhododendron is a large genus, with more than 1,000 evergreen and deciduous tree and shrub species and many cultivars. The national flower of Nepal and state flower of both West Virginia and Washington State, rhododendrons thrive in environments with moist, well-drained, acid soil and dappled shade. Although this group requires very little pruning, it is important to know the best techniques for maintaining healthy growth, developing a bushy growth habit, and encouraging flowering.

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Author’s design at Edwards Communities, Hayden Run Garden.

Selecting new flowers to plant this spring? Before falling in love with a colorful bloom, you’ll want to know if the maintenance requirements are a good fit for your garden. Which plants need cutting back after flowering? Which ones should be divided every year, or every 10 years, and so forth? Luckily Tracy DiSabato-Aust has the details you need to ensure you don’t bite off more than you can prune.

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‘Alpha’ phlox being deadheaded to a lateral bud to extend the bloom period. Photos by the author and illustrations by Beth Ann Daye.

As the “deadhead queen,” I frequently speak and write on the importance of removing old or spent dead flowers. If you are looking for more information about rock ’n’ rollers, this is not the right place, although that might sound somewhat more intriguing. . .

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