new gardening books: vertical forests, garden flora, a dry garden, and China’s lost Imperial Garden

Garden Flora: the natural and cultural history of the plants in your garden, by Noel Kingsbury

SB404.9 K56 2016, Parks Library Tier 1

Good quality book, a nice mix of older plant drawings, photographs, and even paintings. The book contains 1 – 4 page descriptions of plant genera, or sometimes families (e.g., poaceae), that are common / popular for gardening.



A vertical forest, by stefano boeri

SB463.5 V46x 2015, Parks Library Tier 1

A Vertical Forest is the book in which Stefano Boeri speaks about a project that has since become, even before it was finished, one of Milan’s most emblematic buildings. An attempt to introduce a concept to architecture that, until now, has been completely disconnected: biodiversity. The Vertical Forest is not only a building to be inhabited by humans, but also by other creatures such as birds and insects, who have been driven out of our cities by the unstoppable dominance of cement. This book is divided into four parts: “Humans and trees”, a piece by Stefano Boeri who speaks of the birth and development of the project; “Tales from the vertical forest”, with some short stories from Stefano Boeri illustrated by Zosia Dzierzawska; “Vertical Forest: Learning from VF1”, which models the experience to allow for export and the “lllustrated dictionary of the vertical forest in 100 items”, which gathers together some of the key points from the project.



bolddrygardenThe bold dry garden, by Johanna Silver

SB475.83 S55 2016, Parks Library Tier 1

from Timber Press

Ruth Bancroft is a dry gardening pioneer. Her lifelong love of plants led to the creation of one of the most acclaimed public gardens, The Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek, California. The Bold Dry Garden offers unparalleled access to the garden and the extraordinary woman responsible for it. In its stunningly photographed pages, you’ll discover the history of the garden and the design principles and plant palette that make it unique. Packed with growing and maintenance tips, profiles of signature plants for a dry garden, and innovative design techniques, The Bold Dry Garden has everything you need to create a garden that is lush, waterwise, and welcoming.




China’s lost Imperial Garden: The world’s most exquisite garden rediscovered, by Guo Daiheng

SB470.55 C6 G86x 2016, can be found in Parks Library, Tier 1

From Tuttle publishing/Shanghai press

Built in 1707, the Old Summer Palace (Yuan Ming Yuan) is a masterpiece integrating the classic garden-building arts of China. It is reputed as the “Garden of all Gardens,” due to its rich and incomparable landscaping. The beautiful and expansive gardens were known to the world, and triggered the craze of Chinese gardens in 18th century Europe. Victor Hugo, one of the best and greatest known French writers, described it as “Achievements generated from the imagination of a super nation.” The Old Summer Palace was also the second political center in addition to the Forbidden City in the Qing Dynasty (1636–1911). Five emperors chose the Old Summer Palace as their venue for administrative governance. They felt it expressed an ideal of state governing and an appeal of aesthetics. Meanwhile, it was the base for turning out important national policies while serving as an important venue for the exchange between Chinese and foreign envoys. Having gone through a span of over 150 years, the Old Summer Palace reflects the history of the rise and fall of the Qing Dynasty.

Deserving its honor as the largest royal art museum, the Old Summer Palace contained calligraphic works and paintings of many noted artists, numerous rarities such as secret and valuable books, ancient bells, tri-pots, precious articles, gold and silver wares, jewelry and jade as well as rare flowers and trees of that time. In 1860, the Old Summer Palace was destroyed by British-French Allied Forces and all the collections inside were looted, resulting in a terrible disaster in the history of international culture. Today, the Older Summer Palace represents an important piece of cultural history for human civilization.

At the end of the 20th century, Guo Daiheng, the author of this book, led over 80 experts, scholars and professionals in starting a project of Digital Reconstruction of the Old Summer Palace, an unprecedented task in the history of international historic parks. Over the past 15 years, the project has included an orderly development in 3D molding, digital restoration, and digital experience. Scenes of the Old Summer Palace in this book are the exact results from a digitalized Old Summer Palace, which reveals the magnificence of the garden in its prime.


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