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Gardening By The Book

Updated on October 26, 2011


There are worlds of knowledge between the pages of the multitude of garden books that are out there waiting for you to find them. I am often asked to recommend a good gardening book but doing that is more complicated than you may imagine.

First is all depends upon what you are looking for; are you new to gardening or a seasoned pro? Do you primarily grow vegetables? Flowers or herbs? Are perennials your thing or do the possibilities of annuals turn you on?

Do you want the latest organic gardening tips?

Before you go out buy a gardening book, answer the above questions as they will help you decide what you are really want.

The choice of a book will also depend upon your overall gardening goals; are you seeking to grow brilliant rose or to transform your yard into a market garden? Both are possible.

If you are interested in converting your backyard into a food garden then the book, I’d suggest is Gaia's Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture by Toby Hemenway. It is published by Chelsea Green, 2001, and has a foreword by John Todd.

I have taken two permaculture design courses and I define permaculture as a holistic, nature inspired design methodology that can be used to grow food, build communities and create businesses.

Hemenway’s book is for the people who are really determined to increase their ability to grow their own food. If that describes you then check out this book.

Speaking of checking out books, the local public library is a great source for gardening information. You can browse through the books until you garden fix is satisfied then check out the one(s) that you want to take a more detailed look through.

Book sales are another excellent source for getting great garden books; much of my ever growing collection comes from book sales. In the gardening world there is much that is new again and the date a book was printed, especially if it is cheap, I have paid as little as a quarter and sometimes fifty cents for hours of great reading and looking.

I do enjoy looking at the pictures, whether it be garden design or flowers; this is especially an essential activity on the long winter nights when plating out season seem so far away.

I recommend getting at least one plant guide for flowers; make sure it covers plants that will grow in your area. The guide can help you make plant choices; a good one will have a colour picture of the plants plus information about the plant’s requirements and maintenance.

For anyone in the Canadian Maritimes, this is a good choice. The Atlantic Gardener's Greenbook, by Jodi DeLong (Nova Scotia, Canada)Over the years I have been a library of approximately 120 gardening books and growing. I do give a few away to friends who are interested in a particular topic but for the most part, they are treasures which offer me hours of inspiration, information and imagination.

Gardening can be a very simple and enjoyable activity and a good book or three can enhance the ease and the pleasure.

children's books


Submit a Comment

  • Bob Ewing profile imageAUTHOR

    Bob Ewing 

    10 years ago from New Brunswick

    Thanks for the kind wods, we are anticipating a snowstorm here later today; I have my gardeing reading picked out.

  • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

    Zsuzsy Bee 

    10 years ago from Ontario/Canada

    Bob! This is a perfect hub. It covers two of my all time favorite things: Books and gardening. There is a bit of a blizzard outside right now. I was in the city for the past few days and came home with a stash of new books from Chapters, BOOKS ON GARDENING...(Guess what my plans are for the next little while) my cup of tea beside me, a fire in the fireplace...

    Perfectly great HUB regards Zsuzsy


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