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Gardening with Foliage First: 127 Dazzling Combinations that Pair the Beauty of Leaves with Flowers, Bark, Berries, and More

By Karen Chapman and Christina Salwitz

Karen and Christina knock one out of the park with exceptional ideas for everything from large landscapes to tiny patios and containers.

Tracy DiSabato-Aust, author of The Well-Tended Perennial Garden

The beauty of flowers is seductive, but flowers, by their fleeting nature, are a fickle base to provide long-lasting gardens with year-round interest. Tackle this problem with the advice in Gardening with Foliage First. Learn how to first build a framework of foliage and then layer in flowers and other artistic elements to add the finishing touches. This simple, recipe-style approach to garden design features 127 combinations for both sunny and shady gardens that work for a variety of climates and garden challenges, including deer, dry shade, and more.

Media reviews

"A successful planting combination is as much about beautiful foliage as it is about flowers—that’s the premise of Gardening with Foliage First."


"There are two major reasons why I buy gardening books: I want to expand my knowledge, and I want to be inspired. The best books combine both aspects. Timber Press found a way to cut through the noise with Gardening with Foliage First."

Succulents and More

About the authors

Karen Chapman

Karen Chapman has her own container and landscape design company, Le Jardinet. She writes garden articles for online and print publications and is an instructor for Craftsy. Her website is lejardinetdesigns.com.

Read more about Karen Chapman

Christina Salwitz

Christina Salwitz operates The Personal Garden Coach, a Seattle-area business that helps gardeners of all skill levels achieve their gardening dreams. Her blog is personalgardencoach.wordpress.com.

Read more about Christina Salwitz

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