After a caveat list of toxic plants, this goes on to less forbidding, alphabetically arranged entries for more than one hundred garden plants. Harris takes a cue from the Shaker maxim ""The truly useful is always the truly beautiful"" and finds for his aloes and carnations and water lily roots a second life as insect bite balm, soup flavoring, soap ingredient. Other plants serve as remedies for minor ailments, sachet stuffing, cosmetic preparations, or garden-pest repellents. And the stem bark of magnolia is ""a sure cure for chronic tobaccoism."" A spruce, anecdotal bouquet.