Updated for 2007

From a Times staff writer

Sunset has just released the latest edition of its venerable Western Garden Book. Editor Kathleen Norris Brenzel says hundreds of new plants were added to reflect a changing marketplace, and new features cater to gardeners’ evolving preferences.

The plant selection guide in the front of the 768-page book ($34.95 paperback, $39.95 hardcover) now includes expanded recommendations for ornamental grasses and a new section on “small space solutions.”

In the plant listings that make up the bulk of the book, illustrations are played larger. Experts reveal their favorite species in boxed mini-features sprinkled throughout.

The “Practical Guide to Gardening” includes an expanded organic gardening section, and the pests passage is more organized, with a chart listing bugs, the damage each causes and ways to control them. Also new: instructions for building raised beds.


To make room for the new, the book trimmed some of the old. The planting schedules for warm- and cold-season vegetables were axed, as were the listings of public gardens.