Green Resources

This list of resources is arranged by category and includes links to my articles and posts. It also includes other reliable online resources and see below for some of my favorite Florida gardening books.

Compost & mulch
A compost turning = happy gardening in 2013!; Composting for your garden; Follow the yellow mulch road; Bokashi Composting, a fast, anaerobic, fermentation process ; A requiem for a hickory tree; An early fall compost pile;

Cats in the garden controversy; The Almost Ghost Orchids of Clay County; We All Live in a Watershed!; Removing invasives in Mandarin: a team effort; Australian pines: one of Florida's least wanted; Disney Wilderness Preserve: a Nature Conservancy property; Shoreline habitat in the Intracoastal Waterway; Shoreline resoration and habitating building; Native Park restoration; Invasive vs. aggressive: they are not the same;

Tomatoes are for summer; The skinny on onions; Sweet treat carrots; The tale of two parsleys; Edible flowers; The royal herb: sweet basilGrow more veggies: kids can help; Florida blueberries, A native herb amongst the Mediterraneans; Wide row planting and trench composting in the vegetable garden; Dotted horsemint: an appreciation; Recipe for failure: Long-day onions in Florida; Thanksgiving Harvest; Fall edibles; Okra swales; The herb garden: a (mint) family affair; Short-day onions and more...; The eagle has landed, fall gardening and more...; Further lawn reduction, more edible garden space, and zebra longwings;

Supporting wildlife beyond your garden gate; Native plant issues: The good, the bad, and the ugly; Outreach with impact! Part 1; Outreach with impact: part 2; Outreach with impact!: part 3; Outreach with impact: part 4;

Florida's native plants
Getting Started with Native Plants in FloridaNo need to beg for beggarticks; Palmettos in the landscape; Red bays are dying; Longleaf pines; White-topped sedge; An appreciation of scarlet hibiscus; Florida's marvelous mangroves; A shrub to be thankful for: the groundseltree or saltbush; Field trip to Torreya State park with Gil Nelson; Pokeweed: A bird-friendly native; Florida's palmsA review: The Trees of Florida; The St. John's-worts: under-rated landscape plants; What??! Native plants not pretty?; My name is Ginny and I’m addicted to the Florida Native Plant Society!; Doug Tallamy!; The Arbor Day Foundation and Florida; Snow squarestem: a bee and butterfly magnet; Maypop, a native butterfly and bee magnet; Natives for your yard: the next step; Florida's native plant communities; Natives for landscaping: an FNPS tool for you;

Online resources for Florida natives:
- The Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) website provides a wide range of resources including a tool to choose natives appropriate for your county with specific requirements such as shade, soil, and salinity. the FNPS site also includes a thorough description of Florida's native habitats, plus some frequently asked questions such as, "Why plant Natives?"
- The FNPS blog offers a wide variety of articles about  native plants and their habitats.
- The Florida Association Native Nurseries provides tools to find a plant or a nursery near you:
- The Atlas of Florida Vascular Plants provides distribution maps and photos of plants--native or not:

Good gardening
Pot bound!; Planning for microclimates; Give Peace (Lilies) a Chance!Trees and Shrubs: the Bones of Your Landscape; Queen Palms Don't Rule in Florida; Signs of Spring in Northeastern Florida, Finally!; Hurricane-Scaping; Gardenfest not popular? I beg to differ; Unseasonable offerings from Bonnie Plants; A less than ideal potted tree? Even natives can have problems.; Troublesome spot? Convert to containers; I don't love crepe myrtles, But... ;

Integrated pest management (IPM)
Just say no to poisons; A poison is a poison is a poison!

Sensational sunflowers; There's gold in our meadows; Pulsating purple in the fall meadow; Jewels of summer; Pee-yew! Those smelly stinkhorn fungi; Plan ahead!; Ferns in the landscape; Adventures in creating a native garden; Edging projects: risks and rewards; Rayless sunflowers, fall seedlings, and more...;

Changes; Reducing the lawn in your landscape; Cutting edges; The lawn less mown; St. Augustine grass: native or not...; Sunshine mimosa, a lawn alternative for Florida; A St. Augustine meadow project
The Lawn Reform Coalition offers a large number of ideas and resources for reducing your lawn and more sustainably managing what's left. (I'm the Florida member of this group.)

Rain barrels, rain gardens, & other rain water issues
Climb up my rain barrels; Rain Lilies for my rain gardens; Ooh la la, French drains; Rain barrels revisited; A new bed... and standing stormwater; Expanded rain garden; Three More Rain Barrels; Rain Gardening in the South: a Review

Science in the garden
A Plant by Any Common Name...; The Science Behind Southern Grasses, Including Turf; Invasive vs. aggressive Part1; Water Science for Gardeners; The magic of the mistletoes;

Backyard habitat certification; Managing a natural meadow; From stump to butterfly haven; Invite birds to your yard; Pond pleasures; Can the birds count on you?; Cheer for the predators in ecosystem gardening; One native plant = three habitat benefits; The gopher tortoise, a species of special concern; An inch-by-inch decoration feat; Of timberdoodles and ecotones; An exception to the rulesAttracting Damsels and Dragons; Beauty is in the eye of the beholder; Teeming with zebras; Christmas is for the birds;

Great reference books for Florida gardening and conservation:

"Sustainable Gardening for Florida": It's my own book, so of course, I'm recommending it. But what makes it different is that I've included information about how to be a better gardener. You'll learn: how to plant a tree, the best way to use containers (surprise--don't use gravel in the bottom), why you need to build rain gardens, how to prepare for hurricanes, and much more.

Purchase at Amazon

I wrote my second book, "Organic Methods for Vegetable Gardening in Florida" with cowriter Melissa Contreras who gardens in Miami. There are a couple of vegetable books for Florida growers, but they do not cover organic methods. We've arranged the crops by plant family to help gardeners with crop rotation scheduling and also we then only have to explain about legumes and their nitrogen-fixing bacterial or how to build a squash mound one time for the all the crops in those families.

Here are links to some reviews: in the Tallahassee Democrat, in the
The Daytona Beach News Journal.
Purchase at Amazon


If you can afford only one other book, buy Gil Nelson's "Florida's Best Native Landscape Plants: 200 Readily Available Species for Homeowners and Professionals." It provides details on size, where to plant, type of soil, and what to plant with each of the 200 plants. He wrote it with the help of David Chiappini of The Florida Association of Native Nurseries to ensure that the plants are likely to be available.

Purchase at Amazon

Doug Tallamy provided native plant enthusiasts with well-researched and easy-to-understand arguments for using more native plants in your yard, no matter how small. See my post Doug Tallamy!

Purchase at Amazon

Craig Huegel, a Florida native nurseryman has written a pair of useful books for helping Florida gardeners choosing and being successful with their native plants.

Purchase Native Plant Landscaping for Florida Wildlife and/or Native Wildflowers and other Groundcovers for Florida Landscapes at Amazon

Gil Nelson has written a number of field guides, but these two are my favorites. Of course, trees and shrubs are the bones of your landscape, so it's good to find out what the heck you have. And I love ferns, because if you take out the turf from beneath the trees, ferns are often the best replacements.

Purchase Trees of Florida and/or Ferns of Florida at Amazon.

I own "Guide to the Vascular Plants of Florida" by Richard Wunderlin & Bruce Hansen. I'd recommend it only to the more serious botantists, because it assumes your understanding the botanical terms to use the keys.  There are no illustrations, but it covers everything, which is really useful.

Purchase at Amazon

Marjorie Stoneman Douglas was way ahead of her time with this wonderful book. I'd highly recommend "The Everglades: River of Grass" to any Florida citizen.

Purchase at Amazon