Author: Lisa Colburn,

Publisher: Fern Leaf Publishing,

ISBN: 978-0-9847103-0-0

Passionate gardener, Lisa Colburn, achieved mastery of her plant collection while living in cold, northern Maine, a.k.a. USDA Zone 3. However, when she moved 200 miles south within the same State, she found herself in USDA Zone 5 with expanded gardening possibilities.

To help recreate her previous horticultural success, she reached out to the local Maine gardening community. Ingeniously, press releases were distributed and articles were placed in garden club newsletters. All this to inform others about Ms. Colburn's desire to gather information from passionate gardeners who understood the challenges of growing plants in Zone 5. To those who responded to her communiqués, she sent an informal but extensive twelve-page survey.

The author wanted to know what plants local residents grew successfully and where they purchased garden-related products. She asked for descriptions of personal gardens, recommendations for must-see public and private gardens in the area, inquired about garden pests, how local gardeners deal with them, and solicited the names of books, magazines, blogs, and websites that they use in order to find helpful information.

This research strategy paid an enormous dividend. The author discovered over one hundred reliable respondents who were pleased and eager to share their tips and techniques for garden success.

The trustworthy information that Ms. Colburn collected has now been transformed into a garden guide and it is a delightful book to read. Although it's specific focus is USDA Zone 5 in Maine, the manual is useful also for those who garden in other cold climates where growing conditions are similar.

What makes this publication invaluable for Maine gardeners is the fact that it is a go-to source for help, encouragement, moral support, and supplies; it is also a compilation of local horticultural wisdom.

In addition to recommendations about plants and pests, readers will find contacts for garden supplies, plants and tools, local landscape professionals, clubs and organizations. As well, the author lists events, conferences, work - shops, books and magazines that Maine gardeners will find useful.

Readers will also discover the names of helpful garden websites and blogs, television and radio programs, contacts in State government and education, and a list of Maine - based professional and botanical associations.

Another outstanding feature of this publication is a chapter devoted to tropical plants. Adventurous gardeners will learn about those that are versatile enough to thrive outdoors during summer as well as indoors during winter.

Every gardening community whether it is climate - challenged or not, needs a reliable source to simplify and codify local botanical wisdom. Gardeners in the State of Maine are fortunate to have Lisa Colburn.


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