This bibliography contains a selection of books that will be useful to people who are interested in native plants. This list, and the annotations, was the result of suggestions made by MNPS members and is not being updated.
Comprehensive Floras that Include Both Woody and Herbaceous Plants
Flora of Virginia;
Alan S. Weakley, J. Christopher Ludwig, and John F. Townsend; 2012;
Botanical Research Institute of Texas; 1572 pgs.; ISBN: 978-1889878386. The book is quite large and heavy but most of the content is included in the app, which can be carried in to field. See The Flora of Virginia Project.
The Plants of Pennsylvania, An Illustrated Manual, 2d Ed.; Ann Fowler Rhoads and Timothy Block; 2007; Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylania; 1042 pages; ISBN 978-0-8122-4003-0.
When published, these were the definitive sources for identification of plants in Maryland. Although the taxonomy and scientific nomenclature are now outdated, these volumes are still useful, especially because each species is illustrated.
Flora of West Virginia; P.D. Strausbaugh and Earl Core; 1978; Seneca Books, Morgantown, WV; 1119 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0890920107
Packed with information and line drawings of every species. Especially helpful for identifying plants in the mountainous parts of our region. It provides the meanings of many scientific names. Nomenclature and taxonomy outdated.
Manual of Vascular Plants of the Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada; Henry A. Gleason and Arthur Cronquist; 2nd edition, 1991; New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY; 910 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0893273651.
Illustrated Companion to Gleason and Cronquist's Manual: Illustrations of the Vascular Plants of the Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada; Noel Holmgren, Patricia K. Holmgren, and Henry A. Gleason; New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY; 937 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0893273996 .
Gray's Manual of Botany: A Handbook of Flowering Plants and Ferns of the Central and Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada; Merritt Lyndon Fernald; 8th edition, 1950; 1632 pgs.; American Book Company, New York and other cities.
The Flora of North America; Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 1993+; Flora of North America North of Mexico. 12+ vols. New York and Oxford.
Manual of the Vascular Flora of the Carolinas; Albert E. Radford, Harry E. Ahles, and C. Ritchie Bell; University of North Carolina Press; 1245 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0807810873.
An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada; Nathaniel Lord Britton and Addison Brown; 1913; C. Scribner’s Sons, New York; Reprinted 1970, Dover Publications, New York; three volumes; ISBNs: Vol. I: 978-0486226422; Vol. II: 978-0486226439; Vol. III: 978-0486226446 . All three volumes are available online at: http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/bibliography/940#/summary.
National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Trees: Eastern Region; Elbert L. Little; 1980; Knopf, New York City; 714 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0394507606.
Field Guide to Native Oak Species of Eastern North America; John Stein, Denise Binion, and Robert Acciavatti; 2003; USDA Forest Service, Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team; 172 pgs.; ISBN: 978-1470112363. Out of print. 8.4 M pdf: http://www.fs.fed.us/foresthealth/technology/pdfs/fieldguide.pdf
Silvics of North America. 1990. Vol. 1: Conifers; Vol. 2: Hardwoods. USDA Forest Service Agriculture Handbook 654. [Supersedes Silvics of Forest Trees of the U.S.] http://www.na.fs.fed.us/spfo/pubs/silvics_manual/table_of_contents.htm.
Bark: A Field Guide to Trees of the Northeast; Michael Wojtech; 2011; UPNE (University Press of New England); 280 pgs; ISBN: 978-1584658528.
Fruit Key & Twig Key to Trees and Shrubs; William M. Harlow; 1959; Dover Publications, Inc., New York; 126 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0486205113.
Master Tree Finder: A Manual for the Identification of Trees by Their Leaves; May Theilgaard Watts; 1963; Nature Study Guild Publishers; 58 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0912550015.
Winter Tree Finder: A Manual for Identifying Deciduous Trees in Winter; May Theilgaard Watts and Tom Watts;1970; Nature Study Guild Publishers, Rochester, New York; 58 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0912550039.
Common Native Trees of Virginia: Tree Identification Guide; Virginia Department of Forestry; 2007; 128 pgs.
Newcomb's Wildflower Guide; Lawrence Newcomb; 1989; Little Brown & Co.; 490 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0316604420.
A Field Guide to Wildflowers: Northeastern and North-Central North America (Peterson Field Guides); Margaret McKenny and Roger Tory Peterson; 1998; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston; 448 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0395911723.
Flora of Virginia cell phone app. Illustrated keys, usable in the field. See The Flora of Virginia Project.
Grasses of Washington, D.C.; Kamal M. Ibrahim, Paul M. Peterson; 2014; Smithsonian Contributions to Botany No. 99, Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press; 139 pgs.; ISSN: 0081-024X (print); 1938-2812 (online). Online version accessible through: http://opensi.si.edu/index.php/smithsonian/catalog/book/66.
Grasses: An Identification Guide; Lauren Brown; 1992; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Co.; 256 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0395628812.
A Field Guide to Ferns and Their Related Families: Northeastern and Central North America (Peterson Field Guides); Boughton Cobb; second edition, 2005; Houghton Mifflin; 417 pgs.; ISBN: 0618394060
Common Mosses of the Northeast and Appalachians (Princeton Field Guides); Karl B. McKnight, Joseph R. Rohrer, Kirsten McKnight Ward, and Warren J. Perdrizet; 2013; Princeton University Press; 392 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0691156965.
Maryland Bryophytes Collected by Elmer G. Worthley; Edward Uebel (editor); 2000; Maryland Native Plant Society. MNPS has copies available for sale; for more information or to download a pdf, see Maryland Bryophytes Collected by Elmer G. Worthley.
Annotated Checklist of the Vascular Plants of the Washington - Baltimore Area; Stanwyn G. Shetler and Sylvia Stone Orli; Department of Botany, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. In two parts: Part I: Ferns, Fern Allies, Gymnosperms, and Dicotyledons; 2000; 204 pgs.; Part II: Monocotyledons; 2002; 95 pgs. out of print.
Wetland / Coastal
In Search of Swampland: A Wetland Sourcebook and Field Guide; Ralph W. Tiner; Revised edition, 2005; Rutgers University Press; 352 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0813536811.
Field Guide to Coastal Wetland Plants of the Northeastern United States; Ralph W. Tiner; 1993 reprint of original, 1987 edition; University of Massachusetts Press, Amherst, MA; 344 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0870238338.
City of Trees: The Complete Field Guide to the Trees of Washington, D.C.; Melanie Choukas-Bradley; Third edition, 2008; Johns Hopkins University Press; 334 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0813926889.
A Sketch of the Natural History of the District of Columbia; Waldo Lee McAtee; 1918; H. L. & J. B McQueen, Inc. Washington, D.C.; 143 pgs. plus maps. Download pdf (15MB)
Field Guide to the Piedmont: The Natural Habitats of America's Most Lived-In Region, from New York City to Montgomery, Alabama; Michael A. Godfrey; 1997; University of North Carolina Press; 536 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0807846711.
Wildflowers & Grasses of Virginia’s Coastal Plain; Helen Hamilton and Gustavus Hall; 2013; Botanical Research Institute of Texas; 288 pgs.; ISBN: 978-1889878416
Maryland’s Catoctin Mountain Parks: An Interpretive Guide to Catoctin Mountain Park and Cunningham Falls State Park; John Means; 1995; The McDonald & Woodward Publishing Company, Blacksburg, VA; 168 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0939923380.
An Annotated Checklist of the Vascular Flora of Assateague Island (Maryland and Virginia); Steven R. Hill; 1986; Castanea Vol. 51, No. 4, pp. 265-305. Allen Press, on behalf of the Southern Appalachian Botanical Society. Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4033310. (Note: If you register for a MyJSTOR account (free), you are will have access to a few free items at a time.)
Field Guide to the Natural World of Washington, D.C.; Howard Youth; 2014; Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore; 400 pgs.; ISBN: 978-1421412047.
Covers the parks of D.C. and a selection of the animals and plants found in them. A fair number of trees are treated, but very few of the herbaceous or shrubby plants are. A page is devoted to each of the species covered, and high-quality artwork and photos adorn the facing page. Includes descriptions of species, ecological role, and other commentary.
A Field Guide to Eastern Forests: North America (Peterson Field Guide Series); John C. Kricher; 1998; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Co.; 512 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0395928950.
Upper Anacostia Watershed plant communities of conservation significance; 2006; NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. Teague, J. L., et al., authors (pdf)
See p. 8 for a description of two kinds of "pine barrens" communities that were discovered in Prince George's County, Maryland, a decade ago and are believed to be closely related to vegetation previously known only from the New Jersey Pine Barrens. Both of the new community types are globally rare. One of them is tentatively named the Pine Barrens Pine - Oak community. The other is the Pine Barrens Lowland Forest, which is an unusual wetland type characterized by pitch pine and deciduous hardwoods in the canopy. Pitch pine is more characteristic of dry upland sites, but in the New Jersey Pine Barrens it also occurs in sandy areas that are saturated by groundwater. The occurrences in Prince George's represent a southern extension in the range of this rare vegetation type.
Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat and Conservation Landscaping: Chesapeake Bay Watershed; Britt E. Slattery, Kathryn Reshetiloff, and Susan M. Zwicker; 2003; 82 pgs.; U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Chesapeake Bay Field Office, Annapolis, MD.
Made for Each Other: A Symbiosis of Birds and Pines; Ronald M. Lanner; 1996; Oxford University Press, New York; 160 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0195089035.
American Wildlife and Plants: A Guide to Wildlife Food Habits; Alexander C. Martin, Herbert S. Zim, and Arnold L. Nelson; 1951; republished 2011, Dover Publications; 512 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0486207933 .
The Butterfly Garden: Turning Your Garden, Window Box, or Backyard Into A Beautiful Home For Butterflies; Mathew Tekulski; 1985; Harvard Common Press; 160 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0916782696.
Butterfly Gardening: Creating Summer Magic in Your Garden; Xerces Society and Smithsonian Institution; 1998; Sierra Club Books, San Francisco; 228 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0871569752.
Pollinators of Native Plants: Attract, Observe and Identify Pollinators and Beneficial Insects with Native Plants; Heather Holm; 2014; Pollination Press LLC; 320 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0991356300.
Noah's Garden: Restoring the Ecology of Our Own Back Yards; Sara Stein; 1993; Houghton Mifflin: New York City; 294 pgs.; ISBN: 0-395-65373-8.
The Natural Habitat Garden; Ken Druse; 1994; Clarkson Potter; 245 pgs.; ISBN: 0-517-58989-3.
The New England Wild Flower Society Guide to Growing and Propagating Wildflowers of the United States and Canada; William Cullina; 2000; Houghton Mifflin Co.; 322 pgs.; ISBN: 0-39596-6094.
Native Shrubs and Woody Vines of the Southeast: Landscaping Uses and Identification; Samuel B. Jones, and Leonard E. Foote; 1998; Timber Press: Portland, OR; 255 pgs.; ISBN: 0-88192-416-4.
Gardening with Native Wild Flowers; Samuel B. Jones, and Leonard E. Foote; 1990; Timber Press: Portland, OR; 195 pgs.; ISBN: 0-88192-381-8.
American Plants for American Gardens; Edith A. Roberts, Elsa Rehmann; 1996; University of Georgia Press; ISBN: 0-82031-8515.
How to Grow Wildflowers and Wild Shrubs and Trees in Your Own Garden; Hal Bruce, Charles Elliott; 1998; The Lyons Press; ISBN: 0-82031-8515.
A Gardener's Encyclopedia of Wildflowers: An Organic Guide to Choosing and Growing over 150 Beautiful Wildflowers; C. Colston Burrell; 1997; Rodale Press; 216 pgs.; ISBN: 0-87596-723X.
The Once and Future Forest: A Guide to Forest Restoration Strategies; Leslie Jones Sauer, Ian McHarg; 1998; Island Press; 350 pgs.; ISBN: 1559-635-533.
Manual of Woody Landscape Plants: Their Identification, Ornamental Characteristics, Culture, Propagation and Uses; Michael A. Dirr; 1998 (5th edition); Stipes Publishing Co.; ISBN: 0-875-63795-7.
Roadside Use Of Native Plants; Bonnie L. Harper-Lore and Maggie Wilson; 2000; Island Press: Washington, DC; 665 pgs.; ISBN: 1-55963-837-0.
Gardening With Native Plants of the South; Sally Wasowski, Andy Wasowski; 1994; Taylor Publ.; 196 pgs.; ISBN: 0-87833-8020.
Native Trees, Shrubs, And Vines For Urban And Rural America: A Planting Design Manual For Environmental Designers; Gary L. Hightshoe.; 1988; John Wiley & Sons: New York City; 819 pgs.; ISBN: 0-471-28879-9.
The Native Plant Primer; Carole Ottesen; 1995; Harmony Books: New York City; 354 pgs.; ISBN: 0-517-59215-0. Out of print, but available used.
The Wild Lawn Handbook: Alternatives To The Traditional Front Lawn; Stevie Daniels; 1997; IDG Books Worldwide; 256 pgs.; ISBN: 0-028-62004-6.
100 Easy to Grow Native Plants; Lorraine Johnson; 1999; Firefly Books; 160 pgs.; ISBN: 1-552-09327-1.
Native Plants of the Southeast: A Comprehensive Guide to the Best 460 Species for the Garden; by Larry Mellichamp; 2014; Timber Press; ISBN: 1604693231
The Prairie Garden; J. Smith, and Beatrice Smith; 1980; University of Wisconsin Press: Madison, WI; 219 pgs.; ISBN: 0-299-08304-7.
The Wildlife Garden: Planning Backyard Habitats; Charlotte Seidenberg; 1995; University of Mississippi Press. Out of print.
Landscaping With Native Trees: The Northeast, Midwest, Midsouth & Southeast Edition; Guy Sternberg; 1995; Chapters Publishing. Out of print.
Nature's Design: A Practical Guide To Natural Landscaping; Carol A. Smyser; 1982; Rodale Press: Emmaus, PA; 390 pgs. ISBN: 0-87857-343-7. Out of print.
Wild Gardening: Strategies And Procedures Using Native Plantings; Richard L. Austin.; 1986; Simon & Schuster: New York; 96 pgs.; ISBN: 0-671-60241-1. Out of print.
Growing and Propagating Wild Flowers; Harry R. Phillips; 1985; University of North Carolina Press: Chapel Hill; 325 pgs.; ISBN: 0-8078-4131-5.
Woody Plant Seed Manual. 2008. USDA Forest Service Agriculture Handbook 727. 2008. [an update of Seeds of Woody Plants of the United States] http://www.nsl.fs.fed.us/nsl_wpsm.html
Collecting Processing and Germinating Seeds of Wildland Plants; James A. Young, Cheryl G. Young; 1986; Timber Press; 236 pgs.; ISBN: 0-881920-576.
Seeds: Ecology, Biogeography, and Evolution of Dormancy and Germination; Carol C. Baskin, Jerry M. Baskin; 1998; Academic Press; 666 pgs.; ISBN: 0-120802-600.
Seed Germination Theory and Practice; Norman Deno; self published: 139 Lenor Drive, State College, PA, 16801; 242 pgs.
Seeds of woody plants of the United States - Agriculture Handbook 450; C. S. Schopmeyer (editor); 1974; U.S. Department of Agriculture: Washington, D.C.
The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation: From Seed to Tissue Culture: A Practical Working Guide to the Propagation of over 1100 Species; Michael A. Dirr, and Charles W. Heuser; 1987; Varsity Press Inc.; 1100 pgs.; ISBN: 0-942-37500-9.
Seeds of Woody Plants in North America; James A. Young, and Cheryl G. Young; 1992; Dioscorides Press: Portland, Oregon; 407 pgs.; ISBN: 0-931146-21-6.
Nonnative & Invasive Plants
Plant Invaders of Mid-Atlantic Natural Areas; Swearingen, J., K. Reshetiloff, B. Slattery, and S. Zwicker; 2002; National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service: Washington, DC; 82 pgs.
Invasive Plants; Dr. Sylvan Ramsey Kaufman and Wallace Kaufman; 2007; Stackpole Books (www.stackpolebooks.com), Mechanicsburg, PA; 464 pages.
Nonnative Invasive Plants of Southern Forests; James H. Miller; 2003; USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station: Asheville, NC; 93 pgs. Also called General Technical Report SRS-62.
Invasive Plants: Weeds of the Global Garden; John M. Randall & Janet Marinelli, (editors); 1996; Brooklyn Botanic Garden: Brooklyn, N.Y; 111 pgs.; ISBN: 0-945352-956.
Ecologist's Book on Introduced Species' Destructiveness; David Pimentel (editor); 2002; CRC Press LLC: Boca Raton, FL.
Alien Species in North America and Hawaii: Impacts on Natural Ecosystems; George W. Cox; 1999; Island Press: Washington, DC; 387 pgs.; ISBN: 1-55963-680-7.
Other Useful Books
Dictionary of Plant Names: Botanical Names and Their Common Name Equivalents; Allen Coombes; 1997; Timber Press, Portland, OR; 195 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0881922943.
A Sand County Almanac; Aldo Leopold; 1991; Ballantine Books; ISBN: 978-0345345059 .
Deciduous Forests of Eastern North America; E. Lucy Braun; 1950; The Free Press, New York, and Collier Macmillan Publishers, London; Reprinted 2001 by The Blackburn Press; 596 pgs.; ISBN: 978-1930665309. Online at: http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.b3844714;view=1up;seq=9
Raven Biology of Plants; Ray F. Evert and Susan E. Eichhorn; 2012; Eighth edition; W. H. Freeman; 880 pgs.; ISBN: 978-1429219617.
Peterson Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs of Eastern and Central North America (Peterson Field Guide Series); Steven Foster and James A. Duke; 2014; Third edition; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston; 432 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0547943985.
Plants, People, and Culture: The Science of Ethnobotany (Scientific American Library); Michael J. Balick and Paul Alan Cox; 1996; W H Freeman & Co; 228 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0716750611 .
A Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants; Eastern and Central North America (Peterson Field Guide Series); Lee Allen Peterson; 1999; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston; 352 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0395926222.
The Lives of North American Birds (Peterson Natural History Companions); Kenn Kaufman; 1996; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 704 pgs.; ISBN: 978-0395770177.
Other Book Lists
The West Virginia Eastern Panhandle Native Plant Society also has a good on-line book list.
Where to Buy Books
Some of the more recent and popular books can be purchased at a mega-bookstore such as Barnes & Noble or at Amazon.com. These books plus the less common or more specialized ones are often available locally in the Washington, DC / Baltimore area at these stores:
12610 Eveland Road
The library at Adkins Arboretum contains some of the out-of-print and hard-to-find books listed here.
Audubon Naturalist Society
8940 Jones Mill Road
Their book store has a large selection of natural history books and field guides. They try to always have both of the Brown & Brown identification volumes available.
Maryland Book Exchange
4500 College Avenue
They have many of the books on this list; plus it is also a source for used books.
Since you are already on line you could try one of the big Internet consortiums of used book dealers. These are an excellent source of used and hard to find books. Bibliofind loads and searches faster; Bookfinder is slow but may be more comprehensive; they're all good, dependable, and easy to use.