Natural Florida Landscaping
by Laurel Schiller and Dan Walton
As land is developed in Florida the native flora is removed and usually replaced with non-native vegetation. Wildlife habitat is reduced, water, fertilizer and pesticides usage increases, and the appearnace of Florida is altered. But urban and suburban dwellers can reduce the damage being done to our ecosystems by viewing their yards as part of the natural system. This means using native plants and doing it in a way more attuned to natural places.
This small book will help you make a plan that will work for your yard and choose the native plants that will thrive there with minimal care. You will have the joy of creating an aesthetically pleasing, life-supporting, and environmentally sensitive landscape.
Dan Walton and Laurel Schiller have spent the last ten years growing Florida native plants and using them for landscaping out of their nursery called Florida Native Plants in Sarasota, Florida. They have transformed many yards into shady, plant-rich oases with local wildlife.
Available in our nursery bookstore, major Florida bookstores and at
An online preview is available at Google Books.
"This book is about 'Using native plants for a beautiful, life-supporting and environmentally sensitive landscape.' It’s written as if you’d walked up to Dan and Laurel and
asked, 'I’d like to have a more
environmentally sensitive yard, what should I do?' The book
reads like a conversation with these practiced experts.
The basic tenet in this book is 'Put the right plant in the
right place.' Become sensitive to what is natural to Florida.
If a plant needs fertilizer, or a sprinkler system, or pesticides,
or herbicides, it’s not the right plant in the right place and
it’s probably not native to your area.
There is a minor deviation from this tenet: gardeners are
encouraged to have food plants in their yards (they give
suggestion lists for this), as the reduction in transportation
energies may balance the few additives such plants might
require. Essentially, though, we are told that to begin the journey
towards having a more environmentally sensitive yard, get
out and explore the real Florida. At the same time, start your
work at home by getting rid of your turf, removing the
invasives, and keeping your houseplants inside. As you do
these things, use the plant lists and instructions in the book
to be thinking about what plants you want in your yard and
how to start growing them. Overall, a great starter book!" - Rosalind Rowe
"Anyone who envisions a Florida yard as a manicured lawn with a lone palm tree and a plastic pink flamingo should read this book. With specifics on different kinds of Florida native plants, it presents solutions to gardening in Florida with an enthusiastic and progressive spirit… I can make a difference with something as simple as my yard - that is empowering." - Goodreads Reviewer
"A perfect primer for newcomers to Florida or to natural landscaping.
This little book is deceptively slim. Actually, it provides a compact but comprehensive overview of the significant differences between creating a natural landscape with native plants vs. a conventional contemporary Florida landscape of decorative exotics. It will give you a context within which the other native plant books can become useful to you." - Mike Miller, Landscape Designer, http://perfectisland.us/index.html
"As a master gardener, I am getting lots of questions from people wanting to install a native landscape. Other books are great for describing native plants but this is the first one that I have read that really helps the homeowner to understand, plan and install a native landscape. It is on my recommened reading list." - Kaye Robbins, Master Gardener