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CUP book

New Zealand Native Ground Cover Plants: A practical guide for gardeners and landscapers

20 November 2023

By Lawrie Metcalf and Roy Edwards


November 2014
$9.99 (was $34.99)
112 pp, Paperback
250 x 210 mm Full colour
ISBN: 978-1-927145-61-6

There is increasing enthusiasm for using native plants in gardens throughout New Zealand. This book is aimed at helping gardeners and landscaping professionals to select and care for native ground cover plants in order to create low-maintenance, good-looking and sustainable gardens.

New Zealand Native Ground Cover Plants

As with other forms of gardening, ground cover planting is most successful and satisfying when thoughtfully planned, with plants chosen to fit the design objectives and scale of the area to be planted. Hasty, illinformed choices aimed solely at easy care can result in gardens that need to be removed a few years later because the area has become overgrown or the plants are unsuitable for the site.

The authors show how a carefully considered use of New Zealand native plants as ground cover can reduce maintenance in gardens of all sizes while creating an aesthetically pleasing environment. They suggest suitable ground cover plants, based not only on the species but also on the continuing development of the range of hybrids and cultivars that are now available to gardeners. Accompanied by more than 100 colour photographs, these suggestions will help with your plant selection.

The book also covers important topics for preparing the ground, such as:

  • what is a ground cover plant?
  • designing your garden
  • propagating New Zealand native ground cover plants
  • ground preparation – weeds, cultivation and herbicides.

Lawrie Metcalf is one of New Zealand’s most well-known and trusted authors writing about our native flora, with more than 11 popular titles published, including photographic and identification guides, and books on the cultivation and propagation of native plants.

Roy Edwards is a lecturer in horticulture at Lincoln University and has extensive experience in plant use and selection. He has written guides to the university’s grounds and has contributed to Garden Design: A New Zealand guide, and Going Native: Making use of New Zealand native plants (both published by Canterbury University Press).

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