My New Book Is Out!

February 23rd, 2010

by Tom Fischer

I know, OverPlanters, I know–it’s horribly immodest of me to trumpet the arrival of my new book; my mother would be positively pained. But it’s a sweet little book–just what you need to chase away the late-winter blahs–and people are actually saying nice things about it:

“Fischer’s enthusiasm for flora shines through. . . . Whether he’s suggesting eye-catching plant pairings, or offering cautionary advice about aggressive spreaders, Fischer will inspire gardeners to think about incorporating selections from the book’s outstanding bevy of perennials, bulbs and shrubs, native, and tender species.”—Alice Joyce, Booklist

“It’s a handy little reference book and it will certainly get you in the mood for spring and a new gardening season.”—Jane Berger, Garden Design Online

“A joy to leaf through.”—Deborah Roberts, Garden of Possibilities blog

“A delicious little book that arrives just in time for spring planning.”—Kylee Baumle, Gardening by the Book blog

“While Clive Nichols’ phenomenal photos were what attracted my attention, Fischer’s writing was what kept me reading. . . . Fischer makes it clear that color is a joy that should be wholeheartedly embraced in our gardens.”—Colleen Vanderlinden, In the Garden Online

It’s a simple idea, really–it takes a close look at 100 flowers in 10 different color groups, with lots of useful basic information, a few dollops of inspiration, and glorious photographs by Clive Nichols. Best of all, you can get it for a song, either here or directly from Timber Press. Buy one for yourself and one for a friend! Use them as party favors! Get an early start on your holiday shopping! Help keep book publishing alive and well!

8 Responses

  1. Cheryl says:

    Can’t wait to get my hands on this book!

  2. Genevieve says:

    That is awesome, Tom – greatest congrats! I can’t wait to read it myself. You’re right – a not-too-thick book with a lot of color and some fun snippets of text is just what’s needed to get over the winter doldrums.

  3. I just bought two of your last book Perennial Companions – one for my book shelf and one for a gardening basket for my local hort society’s raffle to support gardening in schools at the local Home & Garden Show. Love the book’s format, photos and concept shots – really cool…love this overplanted site as well – good for a more regular dose of the Tom Fischer wit and intellect that I so enjoy….I will get the new book as soon as my local independent book shop has it!

  4. Paul Bonine says:

    An old friend and expert delphiniumist told me that she used liberal amounts of lime to create tall thick stems on hers and they never required staking. They were beautiful, easily 8′ tall and had woody thick stems.

  5. Tom says:

    Allan–thanks so much for your kind review on Amazon! I hesitate to generalize about hybrid tulips, but, in my experience, the deeper you plant them, the better the drainage, and the drier the summer, the longer they’ll persist. I think the trick is simulating the climate of Central Asia as far as your conditions allow.

    The Pacific Giants are bad because the strain is no longer hand-pollinated, as it was in the days when its originator, Frank Reinelt, was still alive. But even in their heyday, the Pacific Giants were not long-lived because they had annual species in their genetic makeup. The most robust plants I’ve encountered come from Dowdeswell’s Delphiniums in New Zealand ( You can order seed directly from them; I have done so myself and had excellent results. I’ve also noticed that a few North American wholesalers are now supplying Dowdeswell plants to nurseries and garden centers. Look for the “Royal Aspiration” strain.

    Alas, I think it’s safest to stake all tall hybrid delphiniums. If you don’t, you’re bound to get a violent wind or thunderstorm just as the spikes are reaching perfection.

  6. Toot your horn, by all means do! The book is infinitely better than you describe it. I read it and posted book reviews to
    and to my blog site

    However, I have some questions that arose out of reading the sublime text:-
    Do all of the tulips included in the book perform as perennials, or should one expect the usual 3 years of bloom before they are spent?

    Regarding Delphiniums, are Pacific Giants worthless because they are short lived and need staking or are all Delphiniums short lived and require support? You recommend robust seed strains instead. Are there no commercially grown robust Delphiniums available anywhere in North America?

  7. Good heavens, you’re not being immodest–gardeners WANT to know about big events like this. Looking forward to dipping in….

  8. Paul Bonine says:

    I’ll buy it. Great idea.

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