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Native Plants of the Northeast: A Guide for Gardening & Conservation

By Donald J. Leopold

An important resource for enthusiasts interested in gaining practical insight about gardening with native plants.

Library Journal

If you've always wanted to garden with native plants, this book is for you. With entries for nearly 700 species of native trees, shrubs, vines, ferns, grasses, and wildflowers from the northeastern quarter of the U.S. and eastern Canada, its comprehensive horticultural coverage is unsurpassed by any other single volume. The natural ranges of many of the plants discussed extend beyond the Northeast; the information on horticultural uses applies to any garden. Each plant description includes information about cultivation and propagation, ranges, and hardiness. An appendix recommends particular plants for difficult situations, as well as attracting butterflies, hummingbirds, and other wildlife. Illustrated throughout with color photographs.

Awards for this book: Garden Writers Association Silver Award

Media reviews

"An important resource for enthusiasts interested in gaining practical insight about gardening with native plants as well as those seeking to restore native plant habitats or enhance biodiversity."

Library Journal

"Provides an invaluable resource for using natives in the landscape and restoration projects."

—Viveka Neveln, American Gardener

"The text is easy to read, both regarding the printing and the writing. ... This is a very good, well written book and well worth the price."

—Jim Dronenburg, Washington Gardener

"A great book! I was feeling quite frustrated until I found this new book from Timber Press. A quick read through will reveal many candidates for upcoming plantings. One could also use it as a casual field guide to identify plants and plant communities while hiking."

—V. Ehrlich, St. John's Express

"[Leopold] recommends 425 species that are easily cultivated in gardens and are useful for restoring native habitats."

—John Lawrence, Thompson Gale

"This is a wonderful book that anyone interested in improving backyards, gardens, and other small stopover areas with native vegitation will want to have handy as an essential reference."

International Hawkwatcher

"The descriptions include pithy recommendations on cultivation, especially with regard to appropriate habitats."


"The color photographs (and there are lots of them) are by the author and very well done."

—Donna Clark, Home Monthly

"It is a must-have for any gardener wishing to learn more about indigenous plants and interested in preserving the balance of native plants on their property."

Bangor Daily News

"An encyclopedia of experience."

—Joel M. Lerner, Washington Post

"This book will interest readers who, regardless of their educational background, wish to learn about using native plants for gardening."

—D. A. Lovejoy, Choice

"A welcome addition to my growing collection of books that list plants. ... Generously illustrated. ... Forthright, warts-and-all descriptions are common throughout."

—Elizabeth Licata, Garden Rant

"A beautifully designed book with solid information on gardening."

—Cheryl B. Wilson, Daily Hampshire Gazette

"My only problem with this book is that it serves a dual purpose, and I only have one copy. I want to keep it because of its scientific value, but I also want to give it to my youngest son ... I guess that I will have to buy another copy. It will be money well spent."

—Douglas A. Wilcox, Wetlands Journal

"A good reference book and an enjoyable, knowledgeable read."

—Ann Milovsoroff, Royal Botanical Gardens Newsletter

"This review would not be complete without a tribute to the incredible photographs the book contains. The clarity of tiny details is astonishing."

—Jean S. Wexler, Vineyard Gazette

"Essential for anyone interested in gardening with native plants as well as those who need horticultural information for habitat restoration."

Plant Talk

"In addition to the alphabetical categorical listing, appendices list plants grouped according to cultural requirements, giving you a jump start on planning a garden for your particular soil requirements."

—Suzanne Hively, Cleveland Plain Dealer

About the author

Donald J. Leopold

Donald J. Leopold, a long-standing member of the Ecological Society of America, has studied native plants for nearly 30 years. He has taught courses in dendrology, plant materials, freshwater wetland ecology, and numerous graduate seminars on conservation and restoration topics.

Read more about Donald J. Leopold

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