Recommended Reading

Native Plants/Ecology: 

There are many books available on local flora and fauna but for one of the best on the intricate ecological interactions check out Bringing Nature Home, How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants by Douglas W. Tallamy.  This lavishly photographed book explains why and how planting native shrubs, trees and flowers in our yards supports our native insects, birds and mammals.

Field Guides:

For initial plant identification, some naturalists refer to the National Audubon Field Guide to Wildflowers, Eastern Region. This book is a good place to start for plant identification as the photographs are arranged by color of the wildflower’s bloom (i.e, it’s a pink flower, start searching in the pink flower section).  The photographs are excellent and below each is the common name, height of the typical mature plant,dimensions of the flower and the page in the guide where more information may be found.

A good companion to the National Audubon Field Guide to Wildflowers, Eastern Region is Lawrence Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide.  The subtitle, the classic field guide for quick identification of wildflowers, flowering shrubs and vines, indicates how extensive material the book covers. The guide focuses on the mid Atlantic states with line drawings and a key which allows the somewhat familiar plant searcher to accurately identify the species based on the description.

Pollinators:

Attracting Native Pollinators, Protecting North America’s Bees and Butterflies.  Published by the Xerces Society, this is simply a wonderful book on the importance of native bees, butterlies, moths, birds and bats and their and their role in ensuring humans have agricultural crops.

Conservation:

A Sand County Almanac by Aldo Leopold. This nonfiction book is one of the cornerstones of conservation. Published in 1948, Leopold captures the wonder of nature and argues in a light and humorous way that it is in our best interest to understand and protect the remaining wild places.