Magnificent Trees of the New York Botanical Garden, Larry Lederman 2012
Richard Powers, the Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Overstory, identified this book in a recent New York Times Sunday Book Review By the Book interview as the best book present he had ever received, and it is easy to understand why. The magnificent trees are elegantly displayed in over 250 photographs divided into the four seasons in the NYBG. It must have been difficult for Larry Lederman to decide what tree to photograph since there are more than 30,000 of them over the 250 acres in this 120 year old Garden. Huge oaks and pines contrast with delicate cherry trees and Japanese maples in this coffee table size book filled with beautiful images that provided many ideas for what to plant in Vermont in honor of our new grandchildren. Simon already has a beautiful Hawthorn growing against the backdrop of Mt. Ascutney, and Lucy and Jonah await their celebratory trees that will be planted this summer. This is a great book for any gardener and especially for someone fortunate enough to have the room to plant trees. Annuals delightfully enliven the spring, summer, and fall of a single year. Perennials return year after year, the shape, texture, and color of their foliage combined with their flowers to comfort old friends, increasing in size and strength with their return each year. Trees, on the other hand, will provide many decades of pleasure as they grow into their mature forms, easily outliving all of us who till the soil and who are lucky enough to plant them and then watch them grow through the seasons.