The Prairie Gardener's Book of Bugs: A Guide to Living with Common Garden Insects

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Press: Fitzhenry & Whiteside; 1 edition (March 7, 2003)
Author Name:Bryan, Nora; Staal, Ruth; Buzik, Grace
Edition:1st Edition


The very appearance of an unfamiliar bug on a dearly beloved tree, shrub, or plant is enough to set the alarm bells ringing for prairie gardeners, inspiring such burning questions as:  What is it?   What does it eat?   Is it friend or foe? What can I do about it?  Authors Nora Bryan and Ruth Staal answer these questions and more. 
Written with skill, insight, and humour, their book describes and discusses over a hundred insects, spiders, mites, slugs, and earthworms that frequent prairie gardens.
Part I: Living with Bugs comprises six chapters that provide background information on all aspects of prairie garden bugs.
Learn about their similarities, differences, and lifecycles; their collective importance to the health of a garden; diagnosing trouble; cultural controls; and the "Pandora's bottle" of pesticides.
The discussion on pesticide is particularly enlightening, giving gardeners the tools to make good choices when it comes to buying and applying chemicals to garden pests.
Part II: Bug Profiles comprises eight chapters that provide detailed descriptions of the insects, spiders, mites, slugs, and earthworms that call prairie gardens home.
Beautifully depicted in full-colour illustrations by Grace Buzik, the bug entries are grouped by a distinguishing characteristic or by the type of plants they attack.
Each entry has a "Bug at a Glance" section that summarizes the type of bug, its size, what it looks like, where you find it, when you find it, what it eats, friend or foe, and what to do about it.
Ruth Staal, affectionately known in Calgary as "The Bug Lady" and Nora Bryan are avid prairie gardeners who embrace a "live-and-let-live" approach.
They are active members of the Calgary Horticultural Society.

About the Author

Ruth Staal is a gardening columnist for The Calgary Herald. 
She has worked for over 30 years in one of Calgary's largest nurseries.Nora Bryan writes for the "Calgary Gardener", the publication of the Calgary Horticultural Society.


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Comment List (Total:5)

  •     Everyone who gardens, especially those who live in the prairies of Canada or the Northern USA, should read this book!It not only has great information about entomology and the individual bugs but also details about how to live with them. The illustrations are wonderful too!As a teacher, I suggest that it would make an excellent resource for school libraries as well because it's not only dry facts but is written in a manner that is easy and fun to read....
  •     It's great to find a book that is actually of practical use. I like the mix of gardening info and Nature info. I've already identified a few critters in the garden and figured out which ones (there was only one) to keep an eye on for problems. The illustrations are top-notch. I like books that aren't dumbed-down but the average gardener can still use. I hope there are more books written by people who garden in our climate and don't just rehash info that is more relevant to warmer zones.
  •     We all enjoy the book. I liked to know what to do about the insects in our garden. Turns out most of the insects are just fine and no threat to any plants. Our kids like the book to just snoop around and be able to learn more while having fun.
  •     An intelligent and humorous guide to the common insects we all encounter. Don't kill that really creepy looking black beetle!!! for it is a ladybug larva that, one day soon, will change into a beautiful helpful, aphid-eating, friend to your garden. Nora Bryan and Ruth Staal have produced and extremely helpful guide to increase awareness of the fantastic world of insects, and I can't help but love the illustrations....because I am the illustrator. Nora Bryan & Ruth Staal were dear women to work with, and we forged friendships that are everlasting.Grace Buzik
  •     The book is a refreshing approach that combines gardening and natural history. I like the balance. A useful guide but also a good read on its own. The best part is having a book written about the prairies by authors who garden on the prairies. Too many books miss the mark for our region but this one is on target for the insect questions I've had. I hope more garden writers in our region pick up the torch as this book does.

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