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Classic Garden Plans

By David Stuart

With such vivid inspiration, creating an intimate version of any of these classic gardens falls into the range of possibility.

Los Angeles Times

For any gardener who is unsure of what to grow or how to put plants together in coherent planting schemes, this book provides answers. Many of the garden plans and plantings included are simplified versions of those created by great gardeners such as Vita Sackville-West, Margery Fish, and Piet Oudolf. The author's extensive knowledge of period plants, and how they were put together to look beautiful, has enabled him to re-create historical classics, like the Renaissance parterre or the Monet water garden, from contemporary planting lists and plans. Each garden is given a brief historical context, and its best qualities, seasons, and times of day are explained. Planting plans are given for each scheme, together with a shopping list that can be taken to a nursery. The book includes suggestions for adapting each plan to the limitations of a given space, and how to adapt the shopping list as well. Classic Garden Plans will be invaluable to any gardener who wants to design a garden with powerful historical associations, filled with authentic plants.

Media reviews

"With such vivid inspiration, creating an intimate version of any of these classic gardens falls into the range of possibility."

—Lili Singer, Los Angeles Times

"Stuart has developed the recipes for 16 well-known gardens, including Monet's water garden and Vita Sackville-West's white garden at Sissinghurst Castle."

Garden Shed

"Stuart's elegant study of historic garden plans balances clear explanation with explicit diagrams listing walkway materials and plants by their Latin names."

—Mary Ellen Snodgrass, American Reference Books Annual

"The photography is outstanding, the diagrams and plot plans easy to understand and the shopping lists sensible. Destined to become a classic garden book."

—Marianne Binetti, Seattle Post-Intelligencer

"Introduces 16 classically-inspired garden plans scaled for smaller home gardens ... Includes historical context, color plans and photos, and a flexible plant shopping list."

Reference and Research Book News

"Stuart simplifies each garden into a manageable project, providing even the most inexperienced green thumb with the inspiration and know-how to create a classic garden of his or her own."

Utah Style and Design

"Another great find for any gardener who is unsure of what to grow or how to put plants together in coherent planting schemes that have historical flavor."

—Diana George Chapin, Bangor Daily News

"Classic Garden Plans serves as a guide for garden design or a gift to a garden enthusiast."

—Henry Berry, Midwest Book Review

"This is a book to be kept nearby and thoughtfully examined and reexamined"

—Georgene Bramlage, Suite101.com

About the author

David Stuart

David Stuart is co-owner of Plants from the Past, a nursery specializing in antique garden plants. He has been a garden columnist for The Scotsman, the Sunday Times, The Observer and The Independent. He has written and photographed for many magazines, including Gardens Illustrated and Country Homes and Interiors, and is the author of many successful books. He lives in Scotland.

Read more about David Stuart

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