Author’s Photo

John Markowski’s Book Finds a Home In My Garden

Only For the Photo Though — It’s Really Going to Live on My Coffee Table

I chose to photograph it next to some Black-eyed Susans because I liked the color contrast — and the Susans are my current perennial garden stars — in full bloom.

Here is a randomly ordered listicle of what I love about this book.

  • The cover photo screams “Open me! Judge me by my cover! My beauty is more than skin deep.”
  • The table of contents is organized alphabetically by Latin name — with common and cultivar names also listed. John explains the naming system for the novice gardener. If you like what you see, you can take the string of names on a post-it to the local garden center to find the exact same plant variety to bring home.
  • John took every photo in the book! My favorites include deer, rabbits, birds, bees and butterflies. Oh! And seed pods — seriously love those. Life is not just about the flowers.
  • John explains, and his photos document, the life cycle of the twenty plants featured. Their blooming beauty is temporary, but John points out the visual interest that precedes and follows the blooms.
  • Common pitfalls are mentioned. I’m pretty sure I’d struggle to keep Lady’s Mantle happy. Our soil is sandy and doesn’t hold water. Thanks John — I’ll skip that one for my yard.
  • Each plant variety has Specifics listed — size, zone, bloom time, deer issues, soil preferences and fun facts. Short, sweet, informative.

Truth be told — there are three things I love about the book above all others.

First, John’s personal experience and personality shines through his stories and descriptions.

Second, he’s shared the journey to get this book out into the world — honestly with his audience. I can relate in some way to almost every feelings he’s shared — wanting more out of life, taking a risk and hating self-promotion. He’s done/doing it — an inspiration.

And third, there is a dedication page that proves John knows even more about life than he does about flowers.

Congrats John! You’ve launched the first one.