Read The Savage Garden: Cultivating Carnivorous Plants by Peter D'Amato Online


Just about everyone's familiar with the Venus flytrap...but did you know that there are pitcher plants that can-and do!-digest an entire rat? Or that there are several hundred species of carnivorous plants on our planet? Full-color photographs of the plants at work and play, plus everything you need to know to successfully grow your own Little Shop of Horrors.Awards1999 AmJust about everyone's familiar with the Venus flytrap...but did you know that there are pitcher plants that can-and do!-digest an entire rat? Or that there are several hundred species of carnivorous plants on our planet? Full-color photographs of the plants at work and play, plus everything you need to know to successfully grow your own Little Shop of Horrors.Awards1999 American Horticultural Society Book Award Winner ReviewsHow to get kids interested in gardening? The San Francisco Chronicle recommends The Savage Garden, "because there's nothing children like better than catching insects and feeding them to their houseplants."...

Title : The Savage Garden: Cultivating Carnivorous Plants
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780898159158
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 336 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Savage Garden: Cultivating Carnivorous Plants Reviews

  • Anju
    2019-05-19 13:49

    The Savage Garden is a fascinating and comprehensive treatment of the world of carnivorous plants. D'Amato is he owner of the California Carnivores nursery, and he clearly conveys his passion and extensive knowledge to the reader. Throughout the book, one gets the feeling that he wants nothing more than for you to share his wonder and to be successful.D'Amato begins with a discussion of the basic concept of what is a carnivorous plant, which is more complicated than one might at first assume. D'Amato points out that even petunias, which are not considered carnivorous and thus are brought up only in passing, trap insects that might otherwise do them harm. This book concentrates, however, on semi-carnivorous plants, which digest prey by enlisting the help of bacteria or insects such as assassin bugs, and true carnivores that produce their own digestive enzymes. The care of carnivorous plants is somewhat specialized—but the basics are easy enough to master. Although they are found throughout the world, most have rather growing environments: they like sun and acidic soil that is wet, low in nutrients, and through which slow moving water flows. If grown in culture, the water should be highly purified water obtained through reverse osmosis—perhaps the biggest barrier towards growing carnivorous plants. Growing media seems more easily obtained from suppliers of orchid media. Several species require terrariums or other protected spaces, but many can be grown on windowsills or in bog gardens. D'Amato covers any specialized needs under the listing for each individual plant.The book is organized by genus, beginning with the venus flytraps. Remarkably, there is only one species within this genus, which is native to only a small portion of —believe it or not—the Carolinas. Likewise, cobra plants (a variety of pitcher plant) are native only to Northern California and Southern Oregon. North America features prominently in The Savage Garden, and D'Amato points out that North America probably has the widest variety of carnivorous plants in the world. In addition to venus flytraps and cobra plants, D'Amato discusses pitcher plants from all corners of the globe, dewy pines, rainbow plants, sundews (perhaps my favorite of all the varieties discussed), butterworts (or pings, which are also quite lovely), bladderworts (a primarily aquatic genus that preys upon small water animals such as daphnia), and a few plants that simply don't fit elsewhere, but are fascinating nonetheless.Eventually the individual descriptions of varieties and cultivars does become tedious, but once in a while there are gems, such as his description of the flowers of the bladderwort Utricularia sandersonii: "Miniature orchid-like flowers with faces of angry little bunny rabbits...." This particular variety is accompanied by a photograph, and the flowers are just as D'Amato describes. The book is full of color photographs of numerous carnivorous plant varieties. This fact is all the more impressive since all of the plants have been grown either by D'Amato himself or by his nursery. Finally, I would encourage you to take the time to read the appendices. Many species of carnivorous plants are endangered due to habitat destruction or overexploitation by enthusiasts and collectors. In many sections, D'Amato writes about the plight faced by carnivorous plants in the wild, but I think he does so most poignantly in a brief anecdote tucked into the appendices. Whether you intend to grow carnivorous plants or not, I highly recommend reading The Savage Garden. And yes, the title is a reference to one of Anne Rice's novels.

  • Jess
    2019-06-13 14:40

    D'Amato is an authority on carnivorous plants. His lifetime of research and study as well as his personal experiences during the heyday of CP identification and generation of cultivators gives this book an edge over any other CP book on the market. This book is tremendously accessible; the author works hard to emphasize that the study and understanding of these plants something any gardener can do.

  • Tealmermaid
    2019-05-21 15:07

    This is the definitive book on carnivorous plants, written by one of the owners of California Carnivores nursery. Everything from potting mix options, whether or not to fertilize, dormancy, and more is covered in great detail by an author who knows his stuff.Read this before you kill your new carnivorous plant with misinformed kindness. Your plants will thank you.

  • Emily Bragg
    2019-06-16 14:08

    I'm thoroughly biased, but this was an excellent guidebook with good information for identification and cultivation, with lovely images all the way through.

  • J.S.
    2019-05-25 13:45

    If you've ever bought a venus fly-trap and had it die on you, but would still like to give it another try, this is the perfect book. And not just for fly-traps, but nearly every other carnivorous plant out there!This book is packed full of information on all kinds of plants that trap and eat insects. But best of all, Peter D'Amato, who runs the largest retail store selling such plants, gives helpful advice on how to grow them. Pretty much everything from soil mixes to light and humidity levels is detailed out here. He even gives lists of plants that do well in different settings, such as windowsills, terrariums, and outdoor bogs. And the writing style is such that it is easy to understand and follow, and even has a nice sense of humor. And while the author's experience is growing them on the Pacific Coast, the advice is easily adaptable to other climates with some adjustment.This is a must-have book for anyone interested in carnivorous plants - and the "bible" for anyone who hopes to grow them successfully.

  • Jamie Henderson
    2019-06-10 15:45

    The Savage Garden was just what I was looking for in a book about carnivorous plants. It covers a short history of what biology/botany has thought about the plants, the different kinds of plants, and cultivation. It was useful that it contains a generalized section on tips and methods for cutlivation, and then a lot of specific information for many different species of plants. A key to the enjoyment of the book is D'Amato's obvious love of the subject and many, many years of experience growing, caring for, and propagating many different varieties of carnivorous plants. This book is very much aimed at the lay person who is interested in growing these strange and wonderful plants in their own home or garden.

  • Teneik
    2019-06-02 13:39

    Carnivorous plants are relatively expensive, and not always locally available. They also can be easily killed with kindness. I highly suggest buying this book before investing in any of these beauties. It allowed me to really figure out what I was getting myself into, and gave me a good sense of what plants I could realistically care for. I can only imagine how much money I would have wasted/plants I would have killed if I didn't have this book. Photos are gorgeous, and the information is wonderful.

  • Miss Jimenez
    2019-05-26 15:50

    A very detailed book for beginners and experianced growers of carnivorous plants. D'Amato gives a wonderful description of each plant along with care trips that are sure to make any carnivorous plant healthy and happy. Not only that but it comes with amazing pictures and unlike other plant books this is one that won't bore you to sleep. After reading this book you'll want to learn even more about these unique plants and- if your not already-encourage you to try growing your own.

  • Jessica
    2019-06-05 10:45

    This is the book to get if you want to cultivate carnivorous plants. Its filled with useful color photos and chapters on every category of carnivorous plant out there, even some of the newly discovered and disputed ones. Also, if you are in the bay area, I highly recommend a trip to the author's shop, California Carnivores. It is worth a 100 mile detour, even though that wouldn't be very green... hmm... Propagate!

  • Matt Marlin
    2019-05-21 11:57

    My knowledge of carnivorous plants is limited, but this is THE authority on all species that occupy this realm. Wonderful descriptions, photos, growing advice and the latest in newly discovered species of carnivorous plants. A must have or must read for those interested in these plants as a hobby or simply curious.

  • Boggy
    2019-05-22 07:47

    This is THE book to own if you want to learn about cultivating carnivorous plants! Written by Peter D'Amato, the owner of California Carnivorous, a carnivorous plant nursery in Southern California, this book covers pretty much everything about these fascinating plants you need to know in order to grow them, or learn about the species. Buy it on

  • Jessse
    2019-05-18 12:05

    anything you ever wanted to know about growing carnivorous plants is in this book. also, peter d'amato can be found at his shop california carnivorous, and will be happy to help you learn about the plants.

  • Carl Leach
    2019-06-02 09:51

    An excellent, informative book. It would make a very good read for anyone who is just starting in the hobby of growing carnivorous plants as well as for those who are already experienced.I'm looking forward to the revised edition being released in 2013.

  • Ruby Birns
    2019-06-15 14:45

    Hands down the best book on carnivorous plants. Funny and interesting, while being informative.

  • Maria
    2019-05-26 10:44

    If you need to learn how to grow carnivorous plants.. then this book is for you!

  • Julie
    2019-05-26 12:43

    a great book with everything you need to know to grow carnivorus plants

  • leticia
    2019-05-31 13:52

    Very thorough, an easy read, and a really great layout. I feel like an expert now.

  • jen
    2019-06-06 15:52

    A good resource for anyone interested in growing carnivorous plants.

  • Tasha
    2019-05-24 14:47

    close to a bible for cultivating carnivorous babies

  • Morgan
    2019-05-20 13:59

    while a bit sappy-memoir in places, the book is a go-to for detailed care instructions on the venus flytrap, various pitcher plants and other insectivorous plants.

  • Lee
    2019-06-04 10:01

    This book is AWESOME cuz it actually tells u how to grow the plants instead of telling u about them.

  • Robert
    2019-05-27 07:39

    Great for the carnivorous plant lover!

  • Eliah
    2019-05-23 11:03

    Awesome referense book, I would like when I start growing carnivorous plants.