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Book Worm


The new handbook became effective July 1, 2007. Each handbook is $15.95 ($15 + .95 tax). Checks should be made out to FGCCT. If you or your club would like a copy of the new handbook, please contact FGCCT Books Chair Sally Kuslis.

Horticulture Handbook: How to Grow-How to Show
Editor Juanita Marotta, 1967, Federated Garden Clubs of Minnesota
A timeless resource (oldie but goodie) for anyone interested in showing flowers.
Small Orange Spiral-bound Handbook    $6.50 each

The Frightened Frog – An Environmental Tale
Published by National Garden Clubs  <<NEW>>
Listed as a book for children K-4, this book is a journey of learning about frogs, amphibians and their habitats.
Read and discuss this book with the children in your life, no matter what age or grade level. Become an environmental hero!
Hardcover children’s book   $10.65

"I loved reading the book. I read the book 5 times! The book says the frog's world is becoming polluted, and I think that is very true. But the book also says that we should try to help and I think that is wonderful."Julia Coggins, 8 yr. old.

Handbook for Flower Shows (2007 edition), National Garden Clubs,  $15.95 each ($15 plus 6.35% tax).

From State Project Chair, Barbara Deysson come these recommendations:

Bringing Nature Home - Douglas Tallamy
Oak - The frame of Civilization - William Bryant Logan
Dirr's Hardy Trees and Shrubs- Michael Dirr
The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Trees
(Eastern Region)
UConn Plant Database - section on Native CT trees at

Recommended by Horticulture Chair Kathrine Neville:

Bringing Nature Home
How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens by Douglas W. Tallamy, Timber Press, 2007. Revised and Updated Edition.

"The most wonderful book. [It] clearly explains the whys and hows of going with natives. As our theme this year I encourage everyone to read this book. I cannot praise it enough and it has become my garden bible and guide. . . . It's great!'

And from Jacqueline Connell, Chair, CT State and National Projects:

“This book has been life changing for me.” – Judith P.
Just one of the comments we received about our first book selection, Bringing Nature Home How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants. Tallamy is professor and chair of the Dept of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware. Doug Tallamy lays out in no uncertain terms why it is imperative for gardeners to invite nature into their yard—there are simply not enough large areas of "wilderness" set aside to carry on the biodiversity of the planet.

His premise is that because there is too little space left for the wildlife we care about and love to watch, we must make our yards friendlier to birds, frogs, butterflies and other wild creatures. To do this we must promote a food source in our gardens-insects. His research goal is to better understand the ways insects interact with plants and how these interactions determine the biodiversity of animal communities. Did you know, for instance, that 96 percent of the birds that come to your garden will only feed insects to their young? Prof. Tallamy and his students have been studying which plants support the most insects and have the greatest effect on the local food web. His conclusion: GROW NATIVESl

Tallamy defines natives as species "having a historical evolutionary relationship" with their environs-they have evolved over hundreds of thousands of years to support the insects that birds and other animals rely on. In contrast, most ornamentals sold in nurseries are alien plants that evolved in some other part of the world and have little interaction with the local food web. Butterfly bushes only attract adult butterflies that sip nectar. The plant cannot be eaten by butterfly larvae. Tallamy notes that pest-free alien ornamentals like lilacs do nothing for insects and birds. "It's as if they were plastic." And alien invasives are far worse as they stray from gardens and displace native species drastically diminishing food sources. A white oak, on the other hand, tops his list of host plants for our area. White oaks support up to 534 species of Lepidoptera, the insect order which includes butterflies and moths.
Everyone who reads Tallamy's book seems to be affected by it. Many now view insects as vital friends, look at what were once pests as no longer that and want to plant only natives.


Copyright © The Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut, Inc.
Last updated
September 3, 2015