This sumptuous new Oxford Companion is devoted to gardens of every kind and the people and ideas involved in their making, in every part of the world where the designed landscape has played an important part. Its broad sweep makes this the perfect reference for garden-lovers everywhere. It combines a survey of the world's gardens, biographies of garden designers, nurserymen, and others, and entries on the worlds of horticulture and plantsmanship, with articles on a range of topics from garden visiting to garden elements and styles, and from scientific issues to the social history of gardens. The Companion provides comprehensive coverage in 1,750 alphabetical entries, detailing all aspects of the garden from the ancient to the avant garde. The writing is authoritative and engaging, with careful attention paid to the correct naming of plants, and a central aim of giving a vivid impression of what it is like to be in these inspirational gardens. There are sumptuous colour photographs by some of the world's best garden photographers, and elegant engravings of historical subjects. Well over half of the entries are devoted to individual gardens, many of them open to the public.These include every kind of garden from palace gardens such as Versailles to private gardens of outstanding design or plant interest, public gardens, botanic gardens and arboreta, late 20th-century land art, and contemporary gardens everywhere. Central to the book are the garden cultures of Italy, Britain, France, China, Japan, and the USA - unquestionably the most significant in the world - but the geographical coverage is worldwide, including such far-flung regions as Turkey, Peru, and Bali. The Companion draws on some of the expertise from The Oxford Companion to Gardens (1986) - in particular the late Maggie Keswick's groundbreaking writing on Chinese gardens. The international team of advisory editors and contributors includes leading authorities and top garden writers from more than 25 countries around the world. Many of the entries include suggestions for further reading and the work's usefulness is further enhanced by a general bibliography, a thematic listing of contents, and an index of gardens, individuals, themes, and features.