Trees and Shrubs
Flowers are wonderful, but the trees and shrubs in the garden are what set them off, as they bring permanence and structure to the landscape. Perhaps you want to add more trees and shrubs to your garden or wonder how to take care of what you have. If so, one of the best books to have is The Homeowner's Complete Tree & Shrub Handbook: The Essential Guide to Choosing, Planting, and Maintaining the Perfect Landscape Plants, by Penelope O'Sullivan (Storey Publishing, 2007, $29.95), with photographs by Karen Bussolini. The book provides an introduction to the principles of garden design, then offers help with tree and shrub selection, especially with the extensive encyclopedia of hundreds of tree and shrubs. Each profile covers ease of cultivation, availability, history, hardiness, size, growth rate, and special characteristics. Finally, the book covers care and maintenance, including advice on buying and planting, pruning, fertilizing, and coping with disease, pests, and environmental problems.
Tool or Gardening Product
Corona 7-inch Razor Tooth Pruning Saw
Fall is the perfect time to prune many of the trees and shrubs in the garden. Having the right tools makes the job go as smoothly as possible. I've long been a fan of Corona hand pruners, but their Razor Tooth pruning saws are a real boon to the job. I keep the 7-inch folding pruning saw in my tool bucket for use year-round, as it's handy for small to medium branches. Corona's Razor Tooth tools are based on three-sided, impulse-hardened razor teeth for efficient cutting. The curved blade design makes for faster cutting, while the hot-chrome-plating helps to prevent corrosion. And, if you ever happen to break it, the blade is replaceable. As a bonus, the handle is comfortable and ergonomically designed.