The Carefree Garden

What happens when a lifelong gardener finally realizes that he must collaborate with Mother Nature rather than work against her in order to achieve his dream of creating the perfect garden? In this delightful and thoughtful narrative journey of horticultural discovery, Bill Terry asks how and even why we garden, and to what end?

These are personal stories, thoughts, and ideas about the "perfect" garden interspersed with humorous, imagined conversations with Mother Nature herself. As he works in his West Coast garden, choosing wild roses over the fancy hybrid teas, and discarding manmade hybrids and cultivars in favour of the charm and simplicity of peonies, hellebores, and tulips as they grow in the wild, Terry learns to welcome and encourage happy accidents, greatly reducing the work and effort required to maintain order (as most gardeners seek to do), and instead embracing a substantial measure of disorder.

The perfect garden, he discovers, respects both Mother Nature’s demands—integrating endemic plants, choosing natural species and varieties—and the gardener’s personality—expressing her own taste and creativity, and rich in private memories. This is a light-hearted and witty collection of reflections that will appeal to gardeners everywhere.

Table des matières

Table des matières
The Carefree Garden 1
Contents 6
1: Meet Mother Nature 8
2: The Perfect Garden 11
3: Consider the Lay of the Land 15
4: Let the Moss Grow Under Your Feet 22
5: A Walk on the Wild Side 39
6: The Floristic Kingdoms 51
7: Rewilding 57
8: The Double-flowered Salmonberry 68
9: The Lilies of the Field 81
10: The Simplicity of Species 92
11: The Twelfth Wedding Anniversary Flower 101
12: It Isn’t Easy Being Green 113
13: Serendipity 134
14: A Plant in the Wrong Place 156
15: Memory and Personality 167
16: Letting Nature Play Her Part 177
Appendix 182
Notes 188
Acknowledgments 190
About the Author 192