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Gardening Ornamental Plants

Extraordinary Ornamental Edibles

100 Perennials, Trees, Shrubs and Vines for Canadian Gardens

by (author) Mike Lascelle

Douglas & McIntyre
Initial publish date
Mar 2018
Ornamental Plants, Canada, General
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2018
    List Price

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Growing your own food continues to gain popularity, but planting and tending vegetables every year certainly requires more effort than the ease of maintaining a backyard full of well-established hardy perennials. Now, with the help of this volume, gardeners can have the best of both worlds by planning a garden full of edible perennials that are both gorgeous and easy-to-maintain. From Akebia vine, with its scented flowers and tasty purple-skinned seed pods, to shade-loving Japanese Zingiber—there are so many options for Canadian gardeners beyond the traditional veggie plot.

One hundred of the most notable trees, shrubs, vines and perennials are highlighted for both their aesthetic and edible appeal, with each entry including such information as ideal exposure, water needs, pollination requirements, harvesting and food preparation suggestions.

More than just a listing of delicious plants, Extraordinary Ornamental Edibles is also a comprehensive guide to the edible landscape as a whole with sensible information about microclimates, pollinators, pests, ecological concerns, organic gardening tips, container growing, space-saving espaliers for small spaces, propagation, grafting, pruning, and design essentials—such as selecting edible ground covers and choosing plants for fall colour. Also included are culinary suggestions and recipes for everything from herbal teas to tempura.

From cold-tolerant cultivars of exotic fruit such as the new hardy lemon or yuzu, to surprising varieties of better-known garden staples, like columnade apple trees suitable to growing in pots and blueberries that bear pink fruit, this volume details the full range of unique and exciting options, making it an inspiring and easy-to-reference A-to-Z guide to growing extraordinary ornamental edibles across Canada.

About the author

Mike Lascelle is a nursery manager and certified arborist, with a thirty-five-year horticultural background that includes estate gardening, landscape construction and design. He has authored several books on plant selection and garden design, as well as articles for Gardens WestCanadian GardeningCoastal Grower and GardenWise, and currently writes a biweekly garden column for the Maple Ridge News. He lives in Maple Ridge, BC.

Mike Lascelle's profile page

Editorial Reviews

“Looking for a garden that’s as functional as it is beautiful? Mike Lascelle’s new title guides us on 100 perennials, trees, shrubs and vines that will thrive in Canadian gardens and bear wonderful fruit--pun intended. From the winter-hardy hosta (yes, it’s edible, although it can be toxic to pets) to plum trees and wild strawberries stock your property with plants that are as lovely to look at as they are delicious to eat."

Catalina Margulis, Harrowsmith

Great plant selections from a respected plant expert who knows what he is talking about. You can use this book with confidence to build an outstanding edible garden, one as beautiful as it is diverse.

Steve Whysall, gardening columnist and author

“Lascelle succeeds in expanding our horticultural as well as culinary consciousness. In the process, he teaches us quietly to develop our ecological consciousness — and this is a very good thing.” - Grahame Ware, the Ormsby Review, August 19, 2019

The Ormsby Review

An excellent, well-researched compendium of edible ornamental plants for gardeners all across Canada.

David Tarrant, host of The Canadian Gardener

This is what we've been waiting for. Extraordinary Ornamental Edibles give Canadians the information they need to transform their landscapes into edible gardens that not only put food on the table, but are beautiful too. Mike Lascelle's years of experience and attention to detail make this book a very useful guide for urban agriculture practitioners. 

Michael Levenston, executive director of City Farmer