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Synopsis

For dog owners and garden lovers alike, Dogscaping presents a plan for the family dog to live in perfect harmony with a green, beautiful backyard. Whether the family dog is a demon digger like a terrier or a shade-seeking greyhound, Dogscaping offers solutions for all dog owners to create the perfect backyard and garden for all members of the human and canine family. Tom Barthel, a certified master gardener and devoted dog owner, approaches the topic of landscaping for dogs organically-figuratively and literally, whenever possible. Encouraging the reader to pursue organic methods, the author includes a terrific chapter on organic lawns and offers tips for maintaining an earth-friendly (and dog-friendly) green-as-can-be lawn. Between the chapters of this book are profiles called “Organic Gardener: Organic Dog,” in which he tells entertaining success stories of dog-owning organic gardeners and hobby farmers. In the chapter “Site Planning and Plant Selection,” Barthel advises on how to plan the backyard space taking the dog’s habits and proclivities in mind and then makes recommendations for various kinds of vines, groundcovers, shrubs, and urine-resistant plants. In its chapter about maintaining the garden and backyard, Dogscaping presents various organic pest and weed control options, which are safe for the dog and practical for the gardener. The author also offers a list of pest-discouraging plants and methods to deter unwanted weeds and visitors (gophers, deer, squirrels, etc.). In the greenest chapter in the book, “Recycling Home, Garden, and Yard Waste,” Barthel makes a compelling case for composting, cataloging both the advantages and savings and offering an easy five-step method of composting. Other additions to the dog-friendly backyard include planting fruits and vegetables, adding a water feature, and incorporating decks, gazebos, pathways, and lighting, all of which are covered in individual chapters in this beautifully photographed book. The final chapter of the book “Creating Doggy Nirvana” provides fun ideas for owners to include dog-specific features into their backyard designs, including a pooch pergola, doggy sandbox, and disappearing fountain. The appendix provides US and North American zone maps. Index included.

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