The Bulb Book. A South African Gardener's Guide, by Charles Barnhoorn
Charles Barnhoorn's book, The Bulb Book: A South African Gardener's Guide, provides all the information that any gardener needs to be able to grow an exciting range of bulbs successfully in South Africa.
Bulbs and South Africa
South Africa is a wonderful country in which to grow bulbs. We enjoy lots of sunlight and a superb climate ranging through a pleasant selection of sub-tropical (KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumulanga), Mediterannean (Western Cape) and temperate (Gauteng) zones. The soils around most of our homes are good for gardening and, relative to many other countries, we have ample space in which to plant and nurture our bulbs as well as access to water and fertilisers. Moreover, competition in the gardening world is energetic and healthy: a whole range of bulb producers, specialist breeders and collectors jostle for attention right on our doorstep. Whether you are a part-time gardener or a specialist collector, South Africa is the perfect place to explore your hobby. Many excellent nurserymen and retailers are on hand to help you find the best plants to brighten your garden and to inspire you. In addition, we have a wealth of indigenous bulbs from which to choose. In fact, South Africa is home to most of the known species of bulbs worldwide, over 2 700 are from our part of the world. A great many of the genera discovered in South Africa have been popularised internationally and indeed are, to a large extent, responsible for the success of commercial bulb growers on other continents. The global bulb industry has grown out of more than 500 years of dedication and fascination, mostly the work of Dutch breeders and growers. Indeed, the Dutch are still in overall control of the industry although production has spread to many other countries around the globe. Nonetheless, the bulb types developed by Dutch entrepreneurs over past centuries, particularly Tulipa, Lilium, Narcissus, Gladiolus, Hyacinthus, Crocus and Iris are still the most popular genera and remain world leaders to this day. However, production and breeding of many genera is declining in the Netherlands and moving to other parts of the world, including Asia and South America. Some African countries are now being used to supply Europe with a kaleidoscope of cut flowers in vast numbers. Further, there is a growing trend to experiment with other kinds of bulbs. After all, there are 800 genera of bulbs available to us. In South Africa, a shift in local markets toward buying indigenous bulbs is particularly evident; rightly so, I feel. Of all countries in the world, we grow the widest range of indigenous bulbs. This book provides all the information that any gardener needs to be able to grow an exciting range of bulbs successfully in South Africa. I have assumed no previous knowledge in the reader and seek to pique his/her interest whilst also informing the experienced bulb collector. There are unifying links between all who pick up this book: the wonderful and diverse country we enjoy and the bulbs that thrive in our gardens. Gardening is never static. We are influenced by collectors, trends, breeders, producers and friends. If you have discovered a new bulb that you have marvelled at and shared with your friends, let me know. Of all nations in the world, we in South Africa stand the best chance of being the next nation to introduce a brand new flower to other gardeners on our green-fingered planet.
This is an excerpt from the book: The Bulb Book. A South African Gardener's Guide, by Charles Barnhoorn.
Title: The Bulb Book
Subtitle: A South African Gardener's Guide
Author: Charles Barnhoorn
Publisher: Jonathan Ball Publishers
Johannesburg & Cape Town, South Africa 2013
ISBN 9781920289768 / ISBN 978-1-920289-76-8
Hardcover, 24x29 cm, 207 pages, throughout photos
Barnhoorn, Charles im Namibiana-Buchangebot
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