December 1, 2009

The last Saturday of each month I, along with Vicky Bartish, guest host the Garden Guru radio program on our local station KAHI – 950 AM.  This past Saturday I had the opportunity to have as our guest Carolyn Singer who has gardened in the Sierra foothills since at least 1977.  For 25 years she owned Foothill Cottage Gardens, where I first met her when I was actively doing landscape construction and needed deer-resistant perennials and shrubs for my business.

Carolyn has written two excellent books on deer-resistant landscapes that I feel are invaluable for those of us designing and building gardens – both residential and commercial.  Just reading the “About the Author” page will satisfy anyone that Carolyn really knows what she’s talking about and how these two volumes can be a great resource for selecting plants that will thrive in our foothills and mountains. 

That’s not to say these books are only for Northern California, not at all.  Carolyn has been researching the deer-resistant qualities of these plants in her own gardens, the gardens of clients and throughout different locations for 30+ years – if you have deer, these books are for you.

Packed with excellent photos, cultural requirements, bloom period, companion plants and uses in the landscape these volumes can show any of us how to create beautiful, drought-tolerant and sustainable landscapes. 

One of the things I do in my classes at the California School of Garden Design is what I call my ” Book of the Day” selection.  I’ve often referred to                                 Volume 1: Perennials and Sub-Shrubs and now I have Volume 2: Groundcovers and Edgers to recommend to students. 

If you don’t have these then I strongly suggest you seek them out.  Visit Carolyn’s website for other articles, classes and information.

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