Insects and Gardens: In Pursuit of a Garden Ecology

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Timber Press, 2001 - Gardening - 345 pages
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With a sound basis in science and a practical grounding in gardening experience, Grissell seeks to introduce the reader to insect biology and the role of insects in garden ecology. He describes the various orders of insects the gardener is likely to encounter, and writes knowledgeably about how insects grow, feed, and reproduce. Unlike other books on insects for gardeners, this is not a handbook on how to recognize and eliminate "pests." Instead, Insects and Gardens casts a more appreciative eye on the doings of the class Insecta and seeks to find a middle ground in which both humankind and insectkind can share the garden to mutual benefit. No absolute purist, however, Grisell guiltily confesses to having broken down and used pesticides in desperation more than once. Gardeners will find here a companionable friend with high ideals rather than an unyielding taskmaster.
More than one hundred of Carll Goodpasture's remarkable color photographs reveal the captivating beauty and vital energy that insects bring to the garden, and illuminate the intricacies of interdependence that characterize a garden's ecology. Even the most "bug-hating" gardener cannot fail to be moved by a gulf-fritillary sipping nectar on a passion flower or a colorful scorpionfly camouflaged on a leaf.

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Insects and gardens: in pursuit of a garden ecology

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This is a thorough introduction to the biology and ecology of insects commonly found in North American gardens, as well as a guide to the principles of ecologically-sound gardening. Grissell, a ... Read full review

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About the author (2001)

Eric Grissell was born in Washington, D.C., and grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. After receiving his doctorate in entomology in 1973 from the University of California, Davis, he worked as a taxonomic entomologist for the Florida Department of Agriculture until 1978. From 1978 to the present he has worked as a research entomologist for the Systematic Entomology Laboratory, U.S. Department of Agriculture, located at the U.S. National Museum of Natural History. He is also a research associate for the Smithsonian Institution and an adjunct associate professor at the University of Maryland. Grissell has gardened since the age of 8 and has been an avid entomologist since the age of 11. He has published two popular books on gardening, several technical books on entomology, more than 75 scientific papers.

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