2017-06-02 / Community

Authors to speak about gardening

Join Reeser Manley and Marjorie Peronto at the South

Portland Public Library’s main location on Saturday, June 10 at 2 p.m. for a talk on their new book, “The Life in Your Garden.” This book is a must-read call to action for gardeners concerned about Earth’s biodiversity crisis. The horticulturists describe how to create gardens that will help stem the tide of species extinctions among insects, birds, amphibians and other endangered creatures.

The book suggests a major rethinking of North American yards and gardens, and encourages every gardener to be a steward of the planet and to enjoy the biological diversity in their garden.

The authors recommend ecologically functional plants – native trees and shrubs, herbaceous perennials and annuals – that will nurture a variety of garden wildlife. Additionally, they present numerous examples of insectgarden interactions to demonstrate that a garden can and should be a stable, self-regulated ecosystem in which insect herbivores are held in check by their predators.

Manley has gardened in South Carolina, Washington state (while earning a doctorate in horticultural science), Massachusetts, and, for the last 15 years, in Maine. From 2007 through 2015, he wrote about the garden in a weekly column for Bangor Daily News. He taught courses in horticulture at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and the University of Maine, Orono. In 2013 he retired from teaching chemistry and physics at a small high school on the coast of Maine to devote his time to gardening and garden writing.

Peronto, a professor for the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, has been teaching courses in fruit and vegetable gardening, ecological landscaping and pruning for 26 years.

Copies of “The Life in Your Garden” will be available to purchase at a reception and signing following the talk. Author Talks are sponsored by Friends of the South Portland Public Library. For more information, call 767- 7660, ext. 2.

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