The past couple of weeks have been a true whirlwind since my book FINE FOLIAGE, co-authored with Christina Salwitz was launched at the 2013 Northwest Flower and Garden Show, Seattle.

My first talk at the show – a demonstration style seminar called ‘Spotlight on Foliage’ was standing room only and by the end of that afternoon the University Bookstore had sold out of our book. Thankfully Christina and I had ordered plenty for ourselves so were able to loan them enough to get them through the rest of the show. Tough problem to have, right?!

Since then the books have been selling nationwide (and thanks to my Mum also in England) with great reviews on both sides of The Pond! Both Christina and I have received lovely emails from total strangers who have purchased Fine Foliage and wanted to say how much they are enjoying it and to thank us for the inspiration we have given them.


So what’s so special about it? Here’s what others are saying;

“Fine Foliage is a visual treat that will inspire you with dazzling combinations for containers and gardens. Karen Chapman and Christina Salwitz explain why each combination works – bringing artistic design within easy reach of all gardeners. A great user-friendly resource.”

Debra Prinzing, author of The 50 Mile Bouquet and Slow Flowers

Garden lovers, you now have the secret for creating the landscapes of your dreams – the ones you see in magazines and wonder “how do those designers DO THAT?”. Christina Salwitz and Karen Chapman show you how to look beyond the flowers and introduce you to the real stars of the horticultural world – LEAVES! Foliage is more than that green stuff around the flowers, it is what divides a good garden from an incredible one, and now you have a guide for how to use its power!

-Ivette Soler, Garden designer and author of “The Edible Front Yard

“The photos in this book are both breathtaking and inspiring…” Barb S., Seattle

“I highly recommend this book for all gardeners and garden lovers…” Suzanne K., Redmond

Read our Amazon reviews

FF Jewel Box

As winter transitions to spring we seem to naturally gravitate to the local nurseries and garden centers, filling our carts with all that is fragrant and flowery. Yet a few weeks from now those impulse buys won’t look quite so impressive if you haven’t paid careful attention to using foliage as the backbone of your combinations.

The solution? Take a copy of Fine Foliage to the nursery with you – it will fit nicely into your purse (UK translation = handbag). Being a high quality hardback it will withstand the rigors of many such trips! Use it as a springboard for new ideas, ask the nursery staff to help you find your favorites or use it as a reference against which to test those flowers you are drawn to!

For example the gorgeous purple and deep red pasque flowers (Pulsatilla sp.) that are in bloom right now would look so pretty with a tricolor sage. Or maybe add a froth of lemon thyme to those dwarf daffodils? Back that up with some blue grasses and a dwarf golden conifer and you have the makings of a great container!



What do I win?
One signed copy of Fine Foliage
On our blog 
Right now!! Drawing will take place at midnight Saturday March 16th PST and the book mailed out first thing Monday.
What do I do to enter?
Head over to and follow the link to sign up for our blog. It’s that easy! Everyone that is registered will be entered into a random drawing. The winner will be notified by email within 24 hours and the winners name will also be posted on the blog itself.

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR WINNER! You have seen sent an email – please let us have your mailing address and Fine Foliage will be on its way!

Didn’t win? Never mind;

Signed copies can be ordered here using credit card or PayPal

Also available at bookstores, nurseries and online.

Share the love of gardening with your friends and family. Fine Foliage would make a beautiful gift for any occasion; new home, birthday, anniversary….and Mother’s Day is just around the corner on May 12th.

final book cover

Both Christina and I are also available to give presentations at your garden clubs, nurseries or other event to celebrate Fine Foliage . You will find us listed on the Great Garden Speakers website; read reviews of our previous talks and get more details of what we offer.

Do tell me which is your favorite combination from the book and share your own ideas for great foliage.

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