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Designing with Roses [Paperback]

Tony Lord
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

3 Aug 2000
This guide demonstrates how to choose, use and cultivate roses for every situation, including borders, containers, kitchen gardens, screens, terraces and country plots. It includes practical techniques, planting plans, and lists of the roses for specific purposes.

Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Frances Lincoln; New edition edition (3 Aug 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0711217149
  • ISBN-13: 978-0711217140
  • Product Dimensions: 24.6 x 24.1 x 1.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,027,495 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Amazon Review

Already known and appreciated for his books on borders and Sissinghurst, Tony Lord reveals yet another area of expertise here in Designing with Roses. A homage to "the queen of flowers", this is also a plea for an end to its misuse, with Tony demonstrating its versatility in borders or pots, on walls and fences, alone or in main or supporting roles. These sweeping concepts are then fleshed out with detailed information on shape, colour, scent, foliage, immunity levels, form and flowering times. He writes for a world-wide audience, taking into account local climates and native plants and his attention to detail continues beyond the plants themselves! When he looks at pergolas, for instance, he is informative about possible site, materials, proportions, and construction.

Well researched, flowing prose, interspersed with the author's own stunning photographs, this book will captivate readers of all levels of expertise, to whom Tony throws out a general challenge towards developing a practical aesthetic of roses which balances design with nature. Finally, the bibliography, international list of nurseries, explanation of zones and invaluable list of strain characteristics leave the reader full of inspiration and equipped with the tools for pursuing the dream. --Fiona Murphy --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


It should perhaps be called 'Observations on Roses' and they are certainly observations by a man who knows ... a good book (Financial Times)

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
The exact number of species is almost impossible to quantify: many are a result of chance hybridization in the wild and owe their survival to cultivation by gardeners; as such they are discounted by some botanists from the tally of species. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars 7 July 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Very good ideas and information.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you love rose-gardening...this is a must-have publication 17 Jun 1999
By A Customer - Published on
I received an advance copy of Tony Lord's new book, "Designing with Roses". Besides being a wonderful rose feast for the eyes this 185 page book has some great ideas for various types of gardens and gardening techniques. This versatile offering has chapters lovingly decorated with lush photography of 'Roses for Structure', 'Roses as Punctuation', 'Roses in Mixed Borders' and 'Roses for Wild Gardens'. At the very end of the book is a wonderful listing of roses for special purposes that Mr. Lord describes as Pick of the Bunch. Here is a marvelous grouping of roses for ground covers, bush roses (short & tall), shrub roses, climbing, roses for arcades, pergolas, and catenaries, roses for autumn color, roses for bedding,roses for colored foliage, roses for conservatories, roses for cutting, roses for fences, roses for fragrance, roses for hedges, roses for pillars, roses for shade, roses for standards, and more. Thirteen pages of detailed information listing color, hardiness zone and class. Roses that have received the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit as plants of excellence and easy culture are also indicated. In 185 pages I counted only about 10 pages that didn't have at least one picture on them. There are many double pages of photography that makes you feel as if your face was pressed against a window looking out into a wonderland of roses. Breathtaking close-up photography makes you think you can actually smell these beauties. The Pick of the Bunch alone makes this book a worthy addition to any roseaholic's library. If you are a Consulting Rosarian, these lists make it a lot easier to suggest roses for special purposes when you are asked by other rose growers.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous, Interesting, Inspiring, 1 Feb 2005
By mtspace - Published on
Lord is a consummate garden photographer, and here we will find many of his best rose photos. For roses one would use in the landscape, this may be the best source of photos.

In this book he takes us through a kind of history of the way roses have been used in gardens. The nice thing about a history such as this is that we get introduced to a number of old design ideas which today may be out of favor. In some cases they are out of favor for very good reasons - as Lord explains: After WW1 the cost of labor went up significantly. One could no longer afford to have a gardener spend half a day training a long-caned rose onto an onion shaped frame. Yet even the oddest of the old ideas will frequently suggest some interesting or useful contemporary practice.

Of the gardening books I own - about 15 shelf feet of them - this may be the one I have spent most time with just reading through. This is high praise, indeed.

Any person who wishes to integrate roses into the design of a garden would do well to read this book. It has a lot to say on garden structure and how various roses occupy the diverse structural niches in a garden.

It even explains why Christopher Lloyd eschews the rose at his world famous gardens at Great Dixter. Now that is something that every person planning a rose garden must read and understand.

The garden: it's not just a bed or roses. Lord helps us understand this.
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book 2 Nov 1999
By Phillip Oliver - Published on
This is a wonderful book with gorgeous color photographs of rose gardens that will make you drool. Although most of the gardens are in England, any gardener can gets ideas from this book. It is basically a "coffee table" type book and is one that you can get lost in on a rainy day. I would highly recommend it!
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book! 12 April 2013
By fred miller - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a lovely book, the photos alone are 'worth the price of admission'.
Finding a few good neighbors for my roses!
4.0 out of 5 stars Not just pretty pictures 27 Oct 2002
By A Customer - Published on
This book has a lot of gorgeous 'rose porn' photographs, but the text is also very informative and gives good, specific suggestions for maximizing the beauty of roses in the landscape. I was able to get ideas on how to incorporate roses in beds of mixed perennials in a sophisticated way. I found the section on the history of the use of roses also very interesting.
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