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Rock and Alpine Gardening: Book suggestion

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Forum: Rock and Alpine GardeningReplies: 40, Views: 152
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Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 19, 2006
5:21 AM

Post #2926883

Hi, I am a begginer gardener... and I have an area with a lot of rocks in my yard that I refuse to touch it... too much work! so I am thinking of a small rock garden... add some charm to the ugly area... is just about 5 feet long and a little less that 4 feet wide. I am looking for a good book for a begginer so I can look for it at ebay and buy used so I can just see if I want to invest time and energy !

I just discoverd sedums and I am in love... I have a catalogue that I am just drooooooliiing looking at the pictures!

Thanks
Kassia
Zuzu
Sebastopol, CA
(Zone 9a)

November 19, 2006
7:37 AM

Post #2926937

Here you go, Kassia. We did a whole thread on this a long time ago:

http://davesgarden.com/forums/t/494296/
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 20, 2006
12:34 AM

Post #2928874

thanks so much...I am looking for it right now~
rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 24, 2006
9:51 AM

Post #2940110

Zuzu - If I were to buy just one Rock garden book - could you recommend the Mineo book - Rock garden plants, you spoke so kindly of in the other thread? I was checking it out on Amazon and it looks pretty good - there weren't any photos in the available excerpts but judging by the index it seems pretty comprehensive. I'm picking my Christmas present - last year I picked a rose book, now I'm thinking of alpines & rock garden plants since that's my other passion :-)

Zuzu
Sebastopol, CA
(Zone 9a)

November 24, 2006
10:17 AM

Post #2940122

Yes, Rannveig. I would recommend it without reservation. It has tons of good photos of just about every rock garden plant and many useful lists, such as lists of the best plants for troughs and containers, for stone walls, for limy soil, for shade, for bogs, etc.

If you can buy two books, and I personally think you deserve at least two Christmas presents, I highly recommend "Rock Garden Plants," one of the books in the series called "Eyewitness Garden Handbooks." It's a small book (just 192 pages), but it's usually available used on Amazon for next to nothing and it contains a veritable wealth of photos and information, including step-by-step instructions, complete with photos of each step, on propagation methods, site preparation, repotting methods, etc.
rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 24, 2006
12:48 PM

Post #2940246

Thanks Zuzu - I'll look for the other one two :-)

Tammy

Tammy
Barto, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 25, 2006
1:20 AM

Post #2941886

I can't believe I missed a new thread here! I love that Mineo book. Definitely a great one for
pictures. Just gorgeous. Not one to give you the nuts & bolts of how to build a rock garden
but a wonderful book as Zuzu describes. I heartily agree. You could also check out
the articles on the NARGS website - there's some good info there on building a rock garden.

http://www.nargs.org/

Tam

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
1:29 AM

Post #2941913

I went to the public library and got some of the books... it's interesting... I can actually work with some plants that I already have... the area I am thinking of doing it, has a lot of rocks and moss... so I have to be selective~
thanks Zuzu...

I am thinking of using Primulas, Violas, Ramonela, Hepatica (purple) and I have one small hosta and some ferns that might work out... it's not a large area anyway... and of course I am going to get some sedum... I have tons of rocks there so we will see!
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
1:33 AM

Post #2941921

didn't get the Mineo book... I am going to see if any library on the network to see if they have... I want to look at the book before I get it... I have so many books ... and I want to save money and buy plants~ more roses specially... my mini list is just growing and growing~~~
Zuzu
Sebastopol, CA
(Zone 9a)

November 25, 2006
4:21 AM

Post #2942314

Kassia, I don't know Ramonela. Do you mean Ramonda? If you like Ramonda, you'll also like Haberlea, and if you like Primulas, you'll really like Cortusa and Soldanella. Look them up. I bet you won't be able to resist.
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
4:33 AM

Post #2942323

you are right... Ramonda... I can't read my own handwriting... lol...
I will look those you suggested... I am so overhealmed... I want it all at once... I need to slow down and just breath... I am fascinated with the 3 books I am reading... oh Zuzu, I am lost!
rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 25, 2006
11:08 AM

Post #2942501

Kassia I really like the sound of your new rock garden - I too love Primulas, Hepatica and Zuzu's right (ofcourse) that Cortusa and Soldanella are gorgeous too! I have some microscopic Ramonda plants growing out in my garage under lights that I'm hoping will someday grow up to be plants. The seed germinated last spring and they've hardly grown at all! I'd heard they were slow growing but I didn't expect them to be so slow!

I stumbled upon another book when I was looking on Amazon - that Todd had recommended in the earlier thread ... Rock garden design and construction ... I'm debating whether to get that one too. I really like the sound of it - and the photos shown were beautiful. Both of them together are kind of expensive ... but it is Christmas after all! Still I really don't have any place sunny enough to construct a proper rock garden anyway so maybe I don't really need it ... but I still really want it! Oh, bother, decisions, decisions ...
grampapa
Wheatfield, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
12:12 PM

Post #2942574

Zuzu, I have a question for you unrelated to books LOL have I ever seen pics of your rock garden? I've been so engrossed in your roses since I met you.

Have you looked for used books online? you may find some of the titles cheap. I have the Mineo book. If you are looking for one just for plants, this is it. It's not a design book, but oh, the plants. I could spend all day leafing thru that book and then start over again. The cover is enough to make you want to start a rock garden. I would recommend that and a design book (probably the one Todd recommended...he's the expert).

Kass, have you got a pic of your 'rock garden' area? I'd love to see it.

gram
Todd_Boland
St. John's, NL
(Zone 5b)



November 25, 2006
12:27 PM

Post #2942591

Mineo's book and the Rock Garden Construction by NARGS would be the two must-be books for beginners. I also have a library of other alpine books but most are specific to a particlar genus. Once you get seriously into rock gardening, you will want Nold's book on Penstemon and Columbines; Kohlein's book on Gentians and Saxifrages; Bland's book on Silver saxifrages; White's book on daphnes...and the list goes on! Don't get the book Alpines, an illustrated dictionary...it is really not that great. Ingwersens book on Manual of Alpine Plants is good but no pictures...and I think it may be out of print. Graham Nicholls just released a new book on Dwarf Campanula that I want to get but can only be pre-ordered at this stage.

Here's a Ramonda pic for Kassia.

Thumbnail by Todd_Boland
Click the image for an enlarged view.

grampapa
Wheatfield, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
12:48 PM

Post #2942627

Kass, I just got a pkg of mixed sedum seed from Park's sale. I thought it might be fun to try. It's one of my winter projects :0). I have no idea what I'll get out of it, but if it's anything interesting, maybe by late spring I can send you cuttings. sedums usually grow pretty fast. I don't know how tough they are to germinate (anybody here know?), but I haven't seen anything in my reading to indicate they are hard.
rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 25, 2006
1:16 PM

Post #2942675

Gram - I grew one sedum from seed the year before last and it was really easy. Germinated very quickly and I got a lot more than I had any use for! I've had problems finding seed of sedums - I've never wanted them bad enough to be ready to pay for plants at the nurseries.

Todd - that Ramonda is gorgeous!!! Oh how I do hope mine will grow up some day!

I looked at used books too, but with the shipping cost to Iceland the used books aren't cheap enough for it to be worth it - actually cost more, so then I'd rather take the new for less $ :-) Still have to figure out wheather it'll be cheaper to order from US or UK - the shipping cost is lower from the UK but the books are more expensive in GBP ...
Todd_Boland
St. John's, NL
(Zone 5b)



November 25, 2006
2:24 PM

Post #2942814

Rann, you should consider taking one of the charter planes from Iceland to Newfoundland...I understand they have several each November for Icelanders to shop in Canada! LOL!

Tammy

Tammy
Barto, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 25, 2006
2:56 PM

Post #2942900

Gram - I've gotten those sedum mixes from Park's before. Sedums are easy from seed.
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
4:41 PM

Post #2943078

Thanks for all your help! I borrowed Rock Gardn -month -by month, Rock Garden plants (eyewitness garden books) The rock & water garden expert, and Making Most of Sade and Step-by-step shade gardens... of course I al looking at all books at the same time... I am eating and even taking the books to the bathroom with me... lol... I am cheating of course! I should be studying Psychiatric nursing! anyway, I am going to see if I can get the Mineo's book...
I looked at the Rock Garden Construction by NARGS and I didn't see many pictures but I will get it next time...

here is where I intend to do it...

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
4:42 PM

Post #2943082

maybe this is a better view...

it's almost under my bedroom window...

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
4:47 PM

Post #2943097

under the window, I started already cutting the bushes... it's amazing that the window gets tons of sun but 3 ft down and it's way cooler

this is where I am planting Social cl. and another 2 roses ... this area gets tons of sun all day... my bedroom is the sunniest spot... and now that one of the monster bush is badly trimmed (I confess that I did it!) much more sun get's in!

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
4:54 PM

Post #2943108

the landscaper just cleaned the irrigation system, and will be laying gravel around the foundation and under the porch ... he keep telling me that the mound I have in the back is good soil and that I am not going to need to buy loam... I am not so sure... he is also not very impressed by my raised beds... they don't match... but I told him, that he will fixed next spring! and also do a greenhouse and a pond for the turtles... as soon as I sell the condo I am going to get a gazeebo kind of greenhouse, so we can use it in the summer and in the fall and winter the structure will be a greenhouse...

this is the mound... (we joke and say that maybe there is someone burried under the mound!)

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
4:56 PM

Post #2943110

this is the moss that is growing...

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
5:10 PM

Post #2943126

I am thinking of an L shape thing... I considered leaving the mound and transforming it into a shade garden, but it takes too much space and I rather have this leveled so if the soil is really good it will turn into soil for the rose beds...

Todd I loved the pic of Ramonda... I found out that they have a chapter of the New England Rock garden not so far from my house... I am going to try to see if I can connect with someone and see what I can learn, specially to find some plants or even people that love to share their cuttings... I love growing things from seeds and cuttings... I always have things in water...

My friend Laura (that got me addicted to DG!!!!) is a master gardener and I am about to go and look at her books and pick her brain about this... she is so sweet... so wonderful... she gave me so many plants already! I am very fortunate...

Gram, I intentend to see you in the spring... remember we have to meet Dave in New Haven for pizza and then head to your house for meatballs!!!! and real buffalo wings in Buffalo... If I don't go to Paris next fall, I am going to invite myself to visit some rose gardens around the country... like TX & CA!!!!!
grampapa
Wheatfield, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 25, 2006
8:10 PM

Post #2943464

I won't be able to make New Haven for pizza, but the invite here for meatballs is still open.
Zuzu
Sebastopol, CA
(Zone 9a)

November 26, 2006
6:28 AM

Post #2944504

Gram, I don't have a rock garden per se. I started growing alpines because my garden was so packed with roses and other things that I was running out of room. My gardener built me seven huge redwood containers and I use them as alpine "troughs." It was so exciting to buy hundreds of new things that took up as much space as just a few roses or perennials. I also have a scree bed -- just gravel on top of concrete, with a tiny bit of soil mixed in. One of the reasons that I had to grow many of the alpines in containers is that my soil here is too rich for them. In containers, I can control the quality of the soil and make it much leaner.

I have a lot of threads in this forum, going back to the time of its revival. This forum had been discontinued due to lack of interest, but Jamie68 and I persuaded Dave to resuscitate it after we got royally snubbed in the rose forum. There was a different group in the rose forum then, and they didn't like anyone who preferred modern roses to the OGR's.
rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 26, 2006
9:04 AM

Post #2944572

I've ordered those books! :-D I'm starting to look very much forward to Christmas now :-) lol It turned out to be cheaper to order from the US, despite the higher shipping cost - hope it gets here in time!

Kassia - I see great potential in that area ... It's always such fun to have a blank canvas to work with :-) Can't wait to see how it turns out!

Zuzu - so glad that the Rose forum has just nice people who like all sorts of roses now :-) Sounds like the people in the Rose Club here who look down their noses at anyone who's interesting in growing other stuff than pimpinellifolias and rugosas - and so glad that you and jamie got the rock garden forum revived !!

This message was edited Nov 26, 2006 10:07 AM
grampapa
Wheatfield, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 26, 2006
11:54 AM

Post #2944704

Zuzu, if you have 7 huge containers and a scree bed, sounds like you have more rock garden (alpine garden?)than a lot of folks. when it comes down to it, it's all about the plants :0) and good grief, there's room for all kinds of roses in the world, too. not so much room for plant snobs, though. can't people just enjoy a pretty flower? I'm planning on cramming every kind of rose I can find into my rose garden.

Kassia's whole property is a blank canvas, much like mine. what fun!! if only we had the money and the time to get everything out of our heads and into the ground, eh, Kass?? dreams and plants. we'll get there. time is on our side, it's the patience that we're lacking LOL

Rann, lovely to something to look forward to. I LOVE books. Reading this thread yesterday was an excuse (not that I needed one) to get out my Mineo and look at pictures :0)
rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 26, 2006
1:04 PM

Post #2944799

Gram, I love books too :-) Especially gardening books ... that's about all I read, apart from children's books for my girls. They have a very sizable children's books collection :-) That was actually one of the things I really looked forward to before I had kids ... to be able to read to them all the wonderful books I grew up with ... and then some! Here in Iceland most books are published before Christmas and it's the most popular christmas present ... unfortunately books are very expensive so I can't afford to give everyone books ... wish I could though! It's referred to as the "Christmas book flood" :-)

I'm lacking a bit of patience as well ... I've been working on this garden now for 3 years and I find it excrutiatingly slow going ... I so wish I could accomplish the plans I have in my head more quickly!! lol But dreaming is good too :-)

Todd - when Icelanders travel abroad they shop like crazy! lol They go on shopping trips all over ... Glasgow, Copenhagen, London and Dublin are popular in Europe - and as well as New Foundland, Minneapolis and Baltimore are popular in the US for shopping trips :-)
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 26, 2006
8:04 PM

Post #2945684

Zuzu, I am so glad there are wonderful people at the rose forum like you guys... goodness gracious I would be lost without you guys!!!!

I love the idea of a different type of garden in each side of my house... variety... I have huge and expensive dreams like Gram have mentioned... if I only had the funds... I definitly need a greenhouse... I can't just not garden in the winter... it's killing me!!!!

Rann, I love books also... my biggest problem when I moved last year was carrying all my books... I lost so many books right before I moved when my basement flooded.. I got so upset I promissed that would not buy books anymore... oh, well I lied to myself... but I did refrain from buying as much as last year... so I am trying to be at least smart and buying only what I know I will really read and use... the other thing is if it is a book a can write on, and make it mine, I am buying, if is not, I will borrow from the library or from friends... I have some great books from Laura and it was worth reading and I am making copies of what I think I might use and making my own notebook... it's like a garden scrapbook thing... not fancy but my own notes...

rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 26, 2006
8:18 PM

Post #2945719

Kassia - I love the idea of you garden scrap -book - really neat idea! There aren't very many gardening books available in the library ... I looked a few years ago and didn't find much. So I'm obliged to buy the gardening books I want to read ;-)
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 26, 2006
8:20 PM

Post #2945723

that's a great reason to buy books...
Rann, what time is it for you now??? it's 4pm for me!
Leftwood
Saint Bonifacius, MN
(Zone 4a)

November 27, 2006
12:33 AM

Post #2946330

Rannveig, if you ever come to Minneapolis, that's where I live. We could go to a horticulture bookstore open by appointment only. Most excellent! Especially if you're looking for used, vintage or out of print stuff. The owner is really a nice guy, despite the picture of him with Martha Stewart shopping his bookstore.

http://www.terracehorticulturalbooks.com/
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 27, 2006
3:09 AM

Post #2946752

wow!
rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 27, 2006
12:15 PM

Post #2947186

wow thanks for the offer Leftwood! That looks like a little piece of book heaven :-)

Kassia when you posted at 4 pm, my time was 9 pm - there's a 5 hour difference in winter :-)
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 27, 2006
7:27 PM

Post #2948239

Rann, I asked because I keep thinking we should be able to have a chat room in this site... like instant messaging..I know... maybe is too much to ask... but I can just imagine how fun it would be...

I got my local library to reserve the Mineo book for me from another library so I don't have to drive to another town to get the book... oh well I should be thinking of nursing...

Today (finally ) the landscaper finished cleaning the garden, laying gravel under the porch and the irrigation system is officially off... enough gravel was left form my rock garden... wow... so much temptation... I will post some pics tomorrow night after school!!!!

rannveig

(Zone 5a)

November 28, 2006
12:50 PM

Post #2950071

kass - it would be fun! I got the seed list from the Alpine garden society yesterday ... 5500 + offerings to choose from ... so I have a lot of reading and research to do today! Wish I had that Mineo book now :-)
Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 29, 2006
3:16 AM

Post #2952290

wow... that's a lot of choices...
ok, this is what the gravel looks like... not the color I really wanted but it's better than it was before... now I am not sure I can really do much!

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 29, 2006
3:17 AM

Post #2952295

another view...

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 29, 2006
3:19 AM

Post #2952297

and this is under the porch

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Kassia
Framingham, MA
(Zone 6a)

November 29, 2006
3:21 AM

Post #2952302

and this the disaster... as you can see I have no prunning skills...

Thumbnail by Kassia
Click the image for an enlarged view.

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