OMG! I’ve been talking with Jennifer so much lately that I forgot that my interview about native perennials was with Melissa, who is so very knowledgeable about rare native plants and has grown many in her garden. She gave a talk to the State Botanical Garden’s Board of Advisors about native perennials that would do well in home gardens. After the talk in November, we finally got together in December so she could answer some of my questions about these perennials. Hearing our conversation again and going over the notes, I am inspired to add several of these recommendations to my garden (I already have a few). I am also inspired to write all three magazine columns due this month on native perennials. I had postponed writing on this subject because these plants would work best in spring issues, just in time for spring planting and the State Botanical Garden April 10th Spring Plant Sale, which will emphasize native plants.
What I am not inspired to do is the usual Internet research, supplemented with my books. Maybe it is because my native wildflower library is written mainly by people I have met and is so charming and thorough. I went to the shelves and pulled down a half dozen great books, mainly from The University of Georgia Press (www.ugapress.org): Hugh and Carol Nourse’s Favorite Wildflower Walks of Georgia, Allan Armitage’s Native Plants for North American Gardens, the Duncans’ Wildflowers of the Eastern United States, Linda Chafin’s Field Guide to the Rare Plants of Georgia, and the Millers’ Forest Plants of the Southeast and Their Wildlife Uses. Then there is my trusty 1992 well-worn paperback: Wildflowers of Arkansas by Carl Hunter, which was a reliable reference when my garden library was small and my computer very, very slow.
The prospect of stacking books, pens, a pad of paper and a cup of tea beside the sinker cypress rocker to research articles actually is inspiring. What a lovely way to spend a few hours this weekend.