Note: The JCRA launched a new Web site on March 1. Please visit us at This site,, is no longer being updated.

Friends of the Arboretum Newsletter

Number 26

October 1995

J. C. Raulston

Contents Page

Notes from the Arboretum

As this last note gets typed and this issue and the Update head to the printers for processing - the arboretum staff is in full frantic frenzy working to get ready for our biggest "event" of the decade - the Southern Plant Conference. By the time you read it - the meetings with their outstanding array of guest speakers will be history and we hope all will have gone well and the "just spit-polished" arboretum will have been enjoyed by hundreds of visitors from across the country. It has been the usual up and down of weather during the year - with a mild winter and good spring flowering season (a highlight the first flowering of our 10' Manglietia yunnanensis - a magnolia family member with evergreen foliage and 4" showy white flowers with bright red stamens at the base - definitely worth the 7 year wait of juvenility and very exciting), wet cool early summer which "spoiled" the plants with soft lush growth which then stressed out as we went into a very hot and dry mid-summer period.

August was really rough - more than the normal number of plants died from the heat and drought - and particularly in the conifer section. But one removes such and goes on - few visitors realize the losses if not directly visible. Another hidden stress occurred when our container nursery irrigation system failed (on a Saturday morning of the hottest day of the summer - of course - not discovered until the weekend was over) and fried many of our new accessions (thankfully few actually killed - but a brown haze looking over the array of containers at first look). Fall has brought good rains and cool temperatures - as usual the best part of the year in N.C. - and we can now look at the garden and feel we'll perhaps survive another year. But we look at what England and the U.S. Northeast has gone through this year with incredible heat stress and drought damage - millions of plants damaged or killed - and realize we have little to seriously complain about.

An exciting year - all the Arboretum staff pushed to the limits with the normal bewildering array of projects - Catherine snagged a difficult and most prestigous Institute of Museum Services grant to provide 20% of our operating budget for the next two years, Tom (and Will Hooker) finished his/their "Paradise Garden" as well as a thousand other projects and we are delighted to have recently moved him to more permanent status within the university administrative system, Newell has developed new office space at the arboretum with more storage and a "clean computer and office work" room, and I continue to dash around running my mouth all over the country and wondering how this complex machine keeps running so well - something like the scientists who prove that bumblebees can't fly aerodynamically - and they keep buzzing along. Of course new plants roll in unceasingly - over 700 for the year at this point - with so many exciting new things from friends, institutions and growers all over the world.

In my "real life" as a university teacher - have the largest classes of nursery production students since arriving at NCSU 20 years ago - 100 enquiring minds wanting to know (well - most of them) and keeping me thoroughly engaged. A busy winter ahead, lots of good Friends programs with outstanding speakers coming here, the Winter Garden at the Arboretum should really hit its stride this third year year (sleep, creep, leap), and so it goes. We wish you well, hope your gardens are thriving, appreciate your support, and look forward to serving you. I'm excited to have this issue as the third newsletter out in the last 12 months - maybe we are approaching a regular schedule - horrors! My reputation ruined.


NCAN Short Course and Trade Fair - Asheville, NC - August 27-28, 1994.

(Most members who comprise the Friends of The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) are not in the professional nursery/landscape trade, but are serious gardeners or people who want to support the contunation of the arboretum as a state resource. Beyond the arboretum use as a university teaching resource and display garden for the public, there is also the very important outreach to the commercial industry. Each year plants are taken to the North Carolina Association of Nurserymen's meeting for display, and thousands of plants are also propagated for free distribution as an incentive to try to encourage nurserymen to grow some new crops. To allow our "Friends" to have a feel for this outreach, I am again as for many years, including here the information on plants distributed at the 1994 meeting as these may be plants which will appear in garden centers for the public in the future - and of course many of the extras from this distribution end up in the autumn members plant giveaway so many of these are now in your gardens under trial.)

Each year a selection of plants from The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) is made for propagation and distribution to N. C. nurserymen at the summer short course as a means of spreading new or uncomon plants through the state for further observation and perhaps commercial production. This program has been underway since 1980 and ca. 65,000 plants of 320 different species and cultivars have been given to growers since its inception. Selection of plants is based on plant ability to be propagated when the Department of Horticultural Science propagation benches are empty, size of stock plants in the arboretum adequate to allow taking of 200-300 cuttings, and absence in the existing commercial industry. Plants will vary in commercial potential with some having great potential - others merely curiosities for adaptation study or hobbyist collector-type items.

The plants provided for growers represent just a sample of the 5,0000 species and cultivars presently growing in The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum). Commercial growers are most welcome at any time to come to the arboretum to collect propagation material to provide stock plants for their operations. We do request for nurserymen collecting plants from the arboretum for the first time, an appointment be made (call 919-515-1192 for J. C. Raulston, 515-5361 for Tom Foley, or 515-1632 for Newell Hancock) to coordinate which materials may be collected and our general guidelines for collection procedures. Dozens of growers now gather many hundreds of thousands of cuttings annually in this manner.

We very much appreciate the long, diligent efforts of a whole team of Friends of The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) Volunteers who spent a full week individually labeling, wrapping, and bagging the 6,000 plants in this year's distribution. Many, many thanks to all who have helped in this process, and especially to Rosanna Adams, Mary Edith Alexander, Bill Atkinson, Anna Berry, Tracey Brandt, Wayne Brooke, Harvey Bumgardner, Tom Bumgarner, Leah Bunker, Dan Burleson, Jo Ann Chiavrini, Linda Christiansen, Ann Clapp, Brian Cronin, Sarah Dickie, Alice Figgens, Vivian Finklestein, Lynn Holt, Susan Lambiris, Amelia Lane, Kitty Maynard, Prep Maynard, David Messer, Bob Olsen, Catherine Parker, Charlotte Presley, Lisa Stroud, Bee Weddington, G. Welton, and Bob Wilder for your incredible help.


Lest growers think all is rosy in our propagation efforts and we have none of the problems that each of you face daily - we've decided to include our failure list for plants we tried to produce for this distribution. If one figures it up - we've had only about a 60% success rate over the last two years of this observation!

1993-94 WINTER HARDINESS EVALUATIONS IN THE NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum)

(original version in Proc. SNA Res. Workers Conf. 39:355-358

Winter hardiness is commonly perceived to be one of the most important measures of plant adaptability in evaluating woody plants for long-term landscape use. So many factors (photoperiod, temperature, nutrition, watering, etc.) affect the conditioning and hardening of woody plants to tolerate low temperatures that it is difficult to fully accertain the precise hardiness a given plant may actually have in landscape use even after extensive field and laboratory research (8). Data slowly accumulates from field experience in trials of new species and cultivars in varied landscape environments and cultural regimes. As more experience and data is obtained over many years of time, this information is used in technical references and industry guides to help growers and homeowners better know where and how new plants may be successfully used (2). Much such information on rare plants is first available in reference materials from England (1,3,7), Germany (5,6), or the U.S. west coast (4), but the total environment of the southeastern U.S. is so different that many plants from the same USDA hardiness zones i n the three areas may have markedly different tolerance to cold. For example, Gardenia, Lagerstroemia, and Nandina are winter-killed in areas which never go below 20F in England, yet tolerate conditions below 10F routinely in Raleigh with no injury thanks to high summer temperatures here which allow carbohydrate accumulation and hardening of wood. "Local" information over many years is still needed to know the true winter hardiness of a plant for any given area.

The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) focuses on field trials of rare woody plant taxa to determine adaptation potential and ornamental merit in USDA Zone 7 in the southeast U.S. Piedmont region. Over 9,000 taxa have been accessioned in the 18 years of the arboretum's life, and the current collections contain an estimated 5,000 taxa of shrubs and trees. Many of these plants are new to U.S. cultivation from exotic climates and many are new hybrids or cultivars which have not been tested for specific genotype stress tolerance. During the winter of 1993-94, the coldest temperatures registered in 9 years were experienced with many hundreds of new and/or rare plants being exposed to temperatures below 10F for the first time.

Results and Discussion: The following compilation presents information on response of uncommon woody plants to a low of 2F in a period of several days with temperatures below 10F. Observations through the arboretum showed the wildly variable patterns commonly seen in exceptional winter periods, with some familiar plants of "known" hardiness which "should be killed" showing little or no injury (e.g. Mahonia lomarifolia ), others which "should have no injury" being killed (e.g. Trachycarpus fortunei , which went through 10 degrees colder weather 10 years ago with no injury), and others ranging in injury depending on exposure (e.g. Mahonia X intermedia 'Arthur Menzies' ranging from no injury to dead at two sites 100' apart). Wind and sun exposure markedly affected injury ratings of broadleaved evergreens and was particularly dramatic at a lath house environment where branches extending through the lath were killed on the outside and had no injury inches away on the inside. Thus, all information below should be considered observational, but in many instances this information is the first to be recorded for these taxa in this temperature regime and can be used for a starting point of potential adaptations for the southeast U.S.

Uncommon woody plants which demonstrated no damage at 2F:

Uncommon woody plants which were damaged or killed at 2F:

Significance to Industry: The winter of 1993-94 was the coldest in N.C. in 9 years and gave valuable data on hardiness of a variety of uncommon woody plants. Of those plants which showed no injury at 2F, the most promising uncommon plants for ornamental value, hardiness, and nursery production potentials for landscape use would include: Castanopsis cuspidata, Daphniphyllum macropodum, Gardenia 'Kleim's Hardy', Keteeleria davidiana, Manglietia yunnanensis, Pittosporum undulatum, Sinojackia rehderiana, and Taiwania cryptomerioides.

Literature Cited:

1. Bean, W. J. 1976. Trees and shrubs hardy in the British Isles. (8th ed., 2nd impression - 5 vol.) John Murray Publ., London.

2. Dirr, Michael A. 1990. Manual of woody landscape plants: their identification, ornamental characteristics, culture, propagation and uses. pp. 654-656. Stipes Pub. Co., Champaign, IL. 1007 p.

3. Hillier Nurseries. 1991. The Hillier manual of trees and shrubs. (6th ed.) David & Charles, Devon, UK. 704 p.

4. Hogan, Elizabeth L. (Ed.) 1988. Sunset Western Garden Book. Lane Publishing Co., Menlo Park, CA. 592 p.

5. Krussman, G. 1985. Manual of cultivated broad-leaved trees & shrubs. 3 vol. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

6. Krussman, G. 1985. Manual of cultivated conifers. Timber Press, Portland, OR. 361 p.

7. Royal Horticultural Society. 1992. New Royal Horticultural Society dIctionary of gardening. 4 vol. Stockton Press, New York, NY.

8. Weiser, C. J. 1970. Cold resistance and acclimation in woody plants. HortScience 5:403-410.

WISTERIA EVALUATIONS IN THE NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum)

Tom Foley, Jr. and J. C. Raulston (original version in Proc. SNA Res. Workers Conf. 40:(in press).

Vines have experienced a marked increase in market popularity in recent years for use on screening trellises and fences, for groundcovers, for covering walls, and for use in patio containers. The vigor of most vines have made them a more difficult and awkward group of plants for the nursery production and retailing markets to handle with often rampant growth and resulting control and confinement issues to master. The public often feels that as a group they are uncontrollably aggressive and must be used with great restraint or in areas where high pruning maintenance can be provided. A wide range of both deciduous and evergreen vines exists with diverse ornamental characteristics, seasons of interest and growth rates (3,4,9,10,13).

Wisteria is almost synomomous with the South as a symbol of the region, and both planted and naturalized populations lend much color and fragrance during the spring flowering season. Two American and three Asian species exist which produce inflorescences of varying lengths with flower colors from white through rose, pink, lavender, and to deep purple with some bi-colored cultivars (1,6,11,13). Some 70 cultivars have been described (12), and 35 taxa are currently listed for sale in the largest United States source reference (5), and 43 taxa are listed for the English market (8). The taxonomic confusion in this group of plants is probably greater than almost any other group of woody plants in the American horticultural field with difficulties even at the species level (6,7). Valder devotes an entire chapter to taxonomic issues and provides a new key to the species which is the most comprehensive yet created (12). In addition, problems of multiple renaming of Japanese clones with varied English names, propagation of local origin seedling types, and loss of clonal identity in accidentally propagating understock from grafted plants has occurred. Many unnamed, color-form ('Pink', 'White') clones are propagated and sold which take many years to first flowering and are often of poor to moderate quality even when flowering is achieved. Over the years, The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) has acquired over 20 clones of Wisteria with about 15 currently under evaluation for cultural and ornamental characteristics in USDA Zone 7. Most are planted either in the model gardens area opposite the rose garden; or on the vine trellises (aka - "The KKK Korridor") in the first walkway in the west arboretum.

Results and Discussion: The following list summarizes 20 taxa either listed in literature or observed in The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) and gives their general ornamental attributes. Taxa currently in The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) collection are indicated by bold type.

Wisteria brachybotrys (W. venusta ) Sieb. & Zucc. - "Silky Wisteria." One of two species native to Japan and much rarer in cultivation than W. floribunda with only the white form ('Shiro Kapitan') in general cultivation outside Japan. Violet, pink and mauve-pink flowered cultivars also exist. It has much broader racemes than W. floribunda with heavy textured flowers and rich fragrance.

Propagation of Wisteria can be achieved by seed, softwood cuttings, dormant hardwood cuttings, root cuttings, layering, whip-and-tongue or cleft grafting, and chip budding (2,12). In a notable negative quote (4), the use of seed is discouraged: "Seed-raised plants are variable and, with bad luck, may take up to twenty years to bear late flowers of poor quality, that are then obscured by foliage." Grafting on seedling stock of W. floribunda is widely practiced in Asian production and the vigorous understock frequently overgrows the scion cultivar, causing a major source of misnamed cultivars in the trade. With modern rooting hormones and intermittent mist technology, rooting of softwood cuttings throughout the summer is the simplest and most recommended procedure for commercial production. Wisteria are essentially insect and disease free in common useage.

Growers should make every attempt to secure and propagate superior, precocious flowering, known cultivar clones of Wisteria to replace many of the poorly identified and difficult-to-flower types currently being sold. The first comprehensive English language book devoted to Wisteris (12) is now available and should be utilized for detailed understanding of this group of horticulturally important decidous vines. The author, who has 40 years of practical nursery experience in collecting and growing this group, rates the following as the ten best wisterias: W. sinensis 'Consequa', W. brachybotrys 'Murasaki Kapitan' and 'Shiro Kapitan', and W. floribunda 'Honbeni', 'Kuchibeni', 'Lawrence', 'Macrobotrys', 'Royal Purple', 'Shiro Noda', and 'Violacea Plena'. Greater use should be made of the two native American species, especially for use in combination with the Asian types to extend flowering period of a given display area.

Literature Cited:

1. Dirr, Michael A. 1990. Manual of Woody Landscape Plants: Their Identification, Ornamental Characteristics, Culture, Propagation and Uses. pp. 926-929. Stipes Pub. Co., Champaign, IL. 1007 p.

2. Dirr, Michael A. and Charles W. Heuser, Jr. 1987. Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation: From Seed to Tissue Culture. Varsity Press, Athens, GA. 239 p.

3. Hillier Nurseries. 1991. The Hillier Manual of Trees and Shrubs. (6th ed.) pp. 572-573. David & Charles, Devon, UK. 704 p.

4. Huxley, Anthony and Mark Griffiths (Ed.). 1992. The New Royal Horticultural Society Dictionary of Gardening. Vol. 4:711-715. The Stockton Press, NY, NY. 815 p.

5. Isaacson, Richard T. 1993. The Andersen Horticultural Library's Source List of Plants and Seeds. p. 258. Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, Chanhassan, MN. 261 p.

6. Krussman, Gerd. 1984. Manual of Cultivated Broad-Leaved Trees and Shrubs. Vol 3 (Pru-Z):458-460. Timber Press, Portland, OR. 448 p.

7. McMillan-Browse, P. 1984. Wisteria. The Plantsman 11(2):109-122.

8. Philip, Chris and Tony Lord (Ed.) 1995. The Plant Finder. p. 698. Royal Horticultural Society, Moorland Publishing Co. Ltd., Ashbourne, Derbyshire, England. 882 p.

9. Raulston, J. C. 1992. Evergreen vines for commercial production in the southeastern U.S. Proc. of SNA Res. Workers Conf. 37:330-335.

10. Raulston, J. C. and Greg Grant. 1994. Trumpetvines (Campsis ) for landscape use. Proc. of SNA Res. Workers Conf. 39:359-363.

11. Rehder, Alfred. 1986. Manual of Cultivated Trees and Shrubs Hardy in North America. pp. 506-508. 2nd Ed. Dioscorides Press, Portland, OR. 996 p.

12. Valder, Peter. 1995. Wisterias - A Comprehensive Guide. Florilegium, Balmain, NSW, Australia. 160 p.

13. Vines, Robert A. 1960. Trees, Shrubs and Woody Vines of the Southwest. pp. 571-573. Univ. of TX Press, Austin, TX. 1104 p.


Well of course THE book news of this period is The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum)'s long agonized over and awaited - The Year in Trees: Superb Woody Plants for Four-Season Gardens by former Arboretum conifer curator and general miracle worker, Dr. Kim Tripp, with a few accompanying notes by yours truly and lots of color photographs culled from 81,000 slides (the most painful part of the whole process - looking through every one of those in a two week period - ugh). As I wrote in the introduction chapter, "Dr. Tripp has the rare combination of a keen observational eye of a technically trained scientist, the soul and vision of a poet to see the rarely recognized inner beauty and secrets of these plants, and the technical proficiency of a practiced professional writer to clearly convey this knowledge and awareness." 204 p. with 150 color photos for $44.95 from Timber Press. We will have it for sale at various arboretum functions, Timber Press books are almost universally available from most major bookstores, and you can order it directly from them by mail at 1-800-327-5680 (We're the lead featured book in their beautiful fall catalog!). Congratulations to Kim on a magnificent job well done.

Another excellent and highly recommended trees reference book is Shade Trees for the Southeastern United States by Williams, Fare, Gilliam, Keever, Ponder, and Owen. 132 p. softback with color photographs - available from the Office of Research Information, Comer Hall, Auburn University, Auburn, AL 36849 (205-844-4985) for $10. Another university contribution worth having from the same office is Hollies for the Landscape in the Southeast by Tilt, Williams, Witte and Gaylor - Circular ANR-837 - #3.25 which includes shipping - from. Make checks payable to Alabama, Cooperative Extension Service.

With the announcement of several "bamboo events" in the accompanying arboretum calendar of coming events - perhaps it is time to again remind readers of the Temperate Bamboo Quarterly published by Sue and Adam Turtle, 30 Myers Rd., Summertown, TN 38483 (615-964-4151) - $24 per year for 4 issues. Full of lots of good information by passionate folks.

Enjoyed quotes:

"I was gratified to be able to answer promptly, and I did. I said I didn't know." Mark Twain

"Many eyes go through the meadow, but few see the flowers in it." Emerson

"Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do." Oscar Wilde

The entire winter 1994-95 issue of Arnoldia (Volume 54, Number 4) is a unique and valuable source of information often sought by those wrestling with the endless agony of plant nomenclature. The entire issue is devoted to giving reference sources and authorities for naming of various groups of ornamental plants - listed by genus with a huge literature citation section. Outstanding reference source. (Available from: Arnoldia, Circulation Manager, The Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130-3519).

A strong positive review of the gardens of the N.C. Triangle area was presented in the June 1995 issue of Travel & Leisure Magazine, p. 10-16 (Melanie Fleischmann - Gardens: The Plots Thicken). I roared with amusement at the quote "Going from Raulston's gardens (The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum)) to those at Duke, although they may be geographically close, is the aesthetic equivalent of leaving a seaside cottage for Versailles." An apt observation on our relative financial status for certain. But the article was highly complimentary to all three of the great University gardens of the Triangle and will surely lure many new visitors from across the country. It was nice to read the view in a bold text blowup that "Serious gardeners would say that the NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) is to the nursery trade what Milan is to the fashion industry." Incidentally also in June our local newsmagazine published the results of their annual reader's poll (Spectator 17(30):9 - June 8-15, 1995) and awarded The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) their award as Best Arboretum in the Triangle in reader's opinions.

My greatest laugh of the last several months came in reviewing a complimentary (one should never laugh in a gift horses' mouth I realize) copy of Educator's Tech Exchange - a publication for the Academic Computing Community with an issue devoted to how the new high tech world of computers is going to transform teaching. To illustrate the wonders of the World Wide Web as a source of unlimited useful information, they illustrate it with a page on teaching ornamental plants through student review material sheets - with a color photo of each plant and all the information about it that can be pulled up on screen. Unfortunately - the example they just happened to use to illustrate the advantages of this fine system - Cornus florida - flowering dogwood; was illustrated by a beautiful photograph of a bright pink weeping cherry - Prunus subhirtella 'Pendula'. Well - I've done far worse in my writings here over the years - but I never claimed to be high tech or perfect either.

An article in the Sunday, November 24, 1994 New York Times by Anne Raver - What Horrifies Roaches and Grows on Trees?, yields the observation that the yellowish-green grapefruit-sized fruits of Osage Orange, Maclura pomifera are extremely effective at repelling roaches ("think of them as winter floral arrangements - doubling as roach controls").

Horticultural travelers are well aware of the riches of the Philadelphia area for innumerable public gardens. A new book, Gardens of Philadelphia and the Delaware Valley, by William M. Klein, Jr. (former director of the Morris Arboretum and currently director of the National Tropical Botanical Garden in Hawaii) with photography by the noted Derek Fell, presents these gardens and their history and contents in a superb manner. 327 pages with 300 full color photographs - for $29.95 + $3.50 shipping from Temple University Press, Borad & Oxford Sts., Philadelphia, PA 19122 (1-800-447-1656).

A "local" southeastern garden center is Charleston and a new travel guide to that area has also appeared: Gardens of Historic Charleston by James R. Cothran from University of South Carolina Press, 205 Pickens St., Columbia, SC 29208 (1-800-768-2500) - $39.95 + $4 handling).

The Dictionary of British & Irish Botanists and Horticulturists by Ray Desmond is a useful reference with 13,000 entries covering the contributions of 1,500 gardeners and garden designers, and over 1,500 nurserymen in British Isles history. 1994, 825 p. - $250 fromTaylor & Francis, 1900 Frost Road, Suite 101, Bristol, PA 19007-1598 (1-800-821-8312). Nice to see something like this done - but when are we going to respect the rich history and heritage of American horticulture enough for someone to do a U.S. companion volume? Badly needed.

One contribution to American horticultural history is a new book on the history of the development of the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University - Science in the Pleasure Ground - A History of the Arnold Arboretum by Ida Hay, a beautiful companion book to the earlier volume on Arnold Arboretum plant introductions by Dr. Spongberg. It is available from Northeastern University Press, C/O CUP Services, Box 6525, Ithaca, NY 14851 - $39.95 + $3 handling.

For Magnoliaphiles - several wonderful recent additions - Check List of the Cultivated Magnolias (1994) - biographical listing of over 1,000 magnolia cultivars with original descriptions and comments. $15 + $3.50 shipping from: The Magnolia Society, Also, The World Of Magnolias by Dorothy J. Callaway from Timber Press - 260 p. with many illustrations and color photos ($44.95)

Another new speciality plant reference that is excellent - Wisterias - A Comprehensive Guide by Peter Valder. This is the first book devoted entirely to this beautiful group of woody vines. Illustrated with stunning color photographs from a lifetime of collecting and growing these plants in a nursery in Australia. Amazingly comprehensive - right down to describing plants in The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) collections! - and newly introduced U.S. cultivars. Highly recommended - and it is hoped it will stimulate commercial production of a wider and better range of Wisteria cultivars in the U.S. - as Vertrees did years ago with his classic book on Japanese Maples. 160 p. - from Florilegium (Australia) but handled already by many U.S. book sources.

Out-of-print horticultural books from:

Books from BREE, 6716 Clybourn Avenue #153, North Hollywood, CA 91606 (818-766-5156; e-mail:

Gardens, Quest Rare Books, 774 Santa Ynez, Stanford, CA 94305 (415-324-3119).

Fair Meadow Books, Emily Collins and Laura Levine, 36 Rucum Road, Roxbury, CT 06783 (203-354-9040).

Landscape #495, Elisabeth Woodburn, Booknoll Farm, P. O. Box 398, Hopewell, NJ 08525 (609-466-0522).

Brooks Books, P. O. Box 21473, Concord, CA 94521 (510-672-4566).

Patricia Ledlie Bookseller, Inc. One Bean Rd., P. O. Box 90, Buckfield, ME 04220 (207-336-2778).

There are hundreds of new gardening books issued each year, and as Allen Lacy states "sadly, many - perhaps the majority - are early candidates for a garage sale." But there are treasures at intervals - and a recent such instant "classic" which will long be read is A Year at North Hill: Four Seasons in a Vermont Garden by the noted writers, gardeners, and designers Joe Eck and Wayne Winterrowd. Again - Allen Lacy says it far better than I ever could "it is toothsome - passionate, reflective, inspiring, endlessly quotable and filled with good humor and humanity." Available in most bookstores or book suppliers (e.g. Capability's 1-800-247-8154) - published by Little, Brown $29.95.

During the 1995 NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) trip to England and Ireland, while at Mt. Usher Gardens in Ireland - we all stocked up on books from a used bookstore to take us through a long day of ferry and bus travel ahead. A random grabbing of two "local" Irish books proved to be fortutitous - with essentially the best reading of my over 50 fiction books so far this year. Oranges from Spain by David Park (Jonathan Cape Publishers) is perhaps my best book of the year with many powerful short stories on the Northern Ireland experience. Nearly as good is State of the Art - Short Stories by the New Irish Writers - Edited by David Marcus - with a reworking of the cliche "igorance is bliss" in the statement in one story, "He cursed intelligence, culture, education and insight. These things had deprived him of comfort and a happy life."

Three recommended books in my current reading pile talk about the philosophy of life and gardening - worth looking at:

Why We Garden - Cultivating A Sense of Place - by Jim Nollman - 312 p. - Henry Holt & Company, NY.

The Attentive Heart - Conversations with Trees - by Stephanie Kaza - 258 p. - Fawcett Columbine, NY.

In the Eye of the Garden - by Mirabel Osler - 176 p. - Macmillan Publishing Co., NY.

Earlier this year The NCSU Arboretum (now the JC Raulston Arboretum) sponsored a growers workshop on speciality cut materials for the design industry. The following references were shared as being useful in this area:

Speciality Cut Flowers by Dr. Allan M. Armitage. 372 p. Timber Press.

Postharvest Handling and Storage of Cut Flowers, Florist Greens and Potted Plants. Nowak and Rudnicki. Timber Press.

Proceedings of Commercial Field Production of Cut and Dried Flowers. The Center for Alternative Crops and Products, Dept. Hort. Sci., University of MN, St. Paul, MN.

Proceedings of the 2nd National Conference on Speciality Cut Flowers. Dr. Allan Armitage, Dept. Hort. Sci.,

University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602.

Holland Bulb Forcer's Guide. Dr. A. A. DeHertogh, Dept. Hort. Sci., NCSU, Raleigh, NC 27695-7609.

Speciality Cut Flowers - A Commercial Growers Guide. Stevens and Gast, Cooperative Extension Service, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS.

Association of Speciality Cut Flower Growers (ASCFG) produces The Cut Flower Quarterly. Membership, ASCFG, MPO Box 268, Oberlin, OH 44074. Can also provide back issues of Proceedings of National Conferences on Speciality Cut Flowers.

A new and quite elegant periodical from England is Gardens Illustrated with quality writing and beautiful photographs.

It can be seen on larger and more comprehensive speciality newstands - or can be ordered directly through their phone credit card hotline at England 01373-451777 ($52 per year - 6 issues) - or by writing to Gardens Illustrated: Freepost (SW6096), Frome, Somerset, BA11 1YA, England.

Perhaps the best gardening book in existance in respect to climatic adaptation information is the Sunset Western Garden Book which has been the gospel for the horticultural faithful in the western U.S. for the last 40 years. It has developed and uses a unique climatic mapping system of 24 zones of adaptation throughout the west half of the U.S. and specifies the adaptation of each plant in the book to these zones. From 1954 to 1994 over four million copies were sold. A new edition arrived in 1995 - and is of course magnificent and a must for any plantsmans reference collection. An interesting concept is explained by Joseph Williamson in a Pacific Horticulture story on this new edition: "There is a subtle change that the gardening public may not notice - references to drought have been eliminated. That word is more suited to the eastern United States, which experiences the dictionary definition of drought - periods of dryness. Here in the West it is more accurate to say that we have periods of wetness; aridity is the ever ongoing condition."


Arborvillage Farm Nursery, 15604 County Road "CC", PO Box 227, Holt, M) 64048 (816-264-3911). Unquestionably the finest array of uncommon woody plant cultivars of any woody plant nursery in the U.S. - astonishing listing and very, very dangerous to the pocketbook for arborealophiles.

Sweetbay Farm, 4260 Enon Road, Coolidge, GA 31738 (912-255-1688) - specializing in magnolias (14 types - $10-25@) and pawpaws, Asimina triloba.

Plants Preferred, P. O. Box 287, Old Westbury, New York, NY 11568-0287 (516-579-6517). Helleborus and Hydrangea.

Southeastern Palm and Exotic Plant Society, C/O Will Roberds, 2652 Woodridge Drive, Decatur, GA 30033 (404-634-4391) has a comprehensive listing of palms, their characteristics and cross-indexed to 10 nursery sources where each may be purchased.

Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict