Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants

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Timber Press, Sep 1, 2009 - Nature - 360 pages
29 Reviews
As development and subsequent habitat destruction accelerate, there are increasing pressures on wildlife populations. But there is an important and simple step toward reversing this alarming trend: Everyone with access to a patch of earth can make a significant contribution toward sustaining biodiversity.

There is an unbreakable link between native plant species and native wildlife — native insects cannot, or will not, eat alien plants. When native plants disappear, the insects disappear, impoverishing the food source for birds and other animals. In many parts of the world, habitat destruction has been so extensive that local wildlife is in crisis and may be headed toward extinction.

Bringing Nature Home has sparked a national conversation about the link between healthy local ecosystems and human well-being, and the new paperback edition — with an expanded resource section and updated photos — will help broaden the movement. By acting on Douglas Tallamy's practical recommendations, everyone can make a difference.

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Review: Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens

User Review  - Katie Naumann - Goodreads

One of my all-time gardening favorites. I was introduced to gardening with native plants as a way to establish a sense of place as well as reap the benefits of plants already adapted to my location ... Read full review

Review: Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens

User Review  - Tomherndon - Goodreads

Great read with some natural history included for good measure. The stats on lost wild landscape is scary, but the suggestions and host nature of plants, etc is very valuable. Looking forward to converting large spans of our lot to native plants. Read full review


A call to Action
2 The Vital New Role of the Suburban Garden
3 No Place to Hide
4 Who Cares about Biodiversity?
5 Why Cant Insects Eat Alien Plants?
6 What Is Native and What Is Not?
11 Making It Happen
12 What Should I Plant?
13 What Does Bird Food Look Like?
14 Answers to Tough Questions
The Last Refuge
Native Plants with Wildlife Value and Desirable landscaping Attributes by Region
Host Plants of Butterflies and showy moths
Experimental Evidence

7 The Costs of Using Alien Ornamentals
8 Creating Balanced Communities
9 Gardening for Insect Diversity
10 Blending In with the Neighbors

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About the author (2009)

Rick Darke is a landscape design consultant, author, lecturer, and photographer based in Pennsylvania who blends art, ecology, and cultural geography in the creation and conservation of livable landscapes. Darke served on the staff of Longwood Gardens for twenty years, and in 1998 he received the Scientific Award of the American Horticultural Society. His work has been featured in the New York Times and on National Public Radio. Darke has studied North American plants in their habitats for over three decades, and his research and lectures have taken him to Africa, Australia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Chile, Japan, New Zealand, and northern Europe. His books include The Encyclopedia of Grasses for Livable Landscapes (2007), The American Woodland Garden (2002), and In Harmony with Nature (2000).

Doug Tallamy is a professor in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware where he has authored 80 research articles and has taught Insect Taxonomy, Behavioral Ecology, Humans and Nature, Insect ecology and other courses for 32 years. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities. His first book Bringing Nature Home was awarded the 2008 silver medal by the Garden Writer’s Association. Doug was awarded the Garden Club of America Margaret Douglas Medal for Conservation and the Tom Dodd Jr. Award of Excellence in 2013.

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