45 Best Gardening Books For Your Library

Ed Wike
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Are you a green-thumb? Do you enjoy working in the garden? Do you dream of building new gardens and improve your old ones? In any case, you need to consult a book for better ideas and inspirations. In this regard, this article’ll present 45 best gardening books a collection of the top gardening books that help you research, design, maintain and improve your garden.

Gardening can be challenging to deal with. What better than to bring your favorite gardening book to refer to? With the right book, you can gain inspiration on anything from container gardens, to natural landscaping, to gardening for beginners.

In this comprehensive list of gardening books, we’ve brought you no-fluff, straight talking reviews and suggestions to help you create the garden you desire.

NameCategoryProduct
Straw Bale Gardens Complete: Breakthrough Vegetable Gardening MethodBest OverallStraw Bale Gardens Complete: Breakthrough Vegetable Gardening Method
The Truth About Garden Remedies: What WorksBudget PickThe Truth About Garden Remedies: What Works
How to Grow and Make Tea in the United StatesUpgrade PickHow to Grow and Make Tea in the United States

1. Straw Bale Gardens Complete: Breakthrough Vegetable Gardening Method

Our rating: 9 / 10

Straw Bale Gardens Complete: Breakthrough Vegetable Gardening Method

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Pros:

  • The first ever straw bale gardening book
  • Covers straw bale gardening essentials
  • Packed with projects and DIY advice
  • Know how and when to harvest
  • A guide to planting organic vegetables
  • Everything you need to know to maximize your harvest
  • Useful tips and tricks for growing heirloom vegetables
  • How to save seeds for future use
  • Includes information on saving water

Cons:

  • The product is pricier than others
  • There are no pictures

Growing History & Why It Still Works – Plan Your Garden For Maximum Results – Seed Saving – 100s Of Make/Use Projects Plus: Feather-Standing Veggies For Vintage Bales Geared For Survival Preppers – By Steve Diver

2. Botanical Shakespeare: An Illustrated Compendium of all the Flowers

Our rating: 9 / 10

Botanical Shakespeare: An Illustrated Compendium of all the Flowers

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Pros:

  • Beautiful illustrations
  • Botanical Shakespeare is a must for everyone who loves plants and Shakespeare
  • Heavy for easy reference

This one of the best and most complete illustrated compilations of all the plants and flowers Shakespeare referred to in his work. It's a must for students, scholars, gardeners, and plant lovers. The ones that love plants of tend to end up being plant snobs and everything had to be perfect around them. Gardeners are the type of people that want to know all the nitty gritty details. Shakespeare's lovers and fans should definitely have a copy of this in their library.

The book will not only provide a complete list, use, and origin of the plant, tree, and flower, it will also provide an illustration of the plant. This is the perfect gift for a plant lover, teacher, Shakespeare, and literature lover, a gift you will be thoroughly happy with.

3. The Ruth Stout No-Work Garden Book: Secrets of the Famous Year-Round Mulch Method

Our rating: 8 / 10

The Ruth Stout No-Work Garden Book: Secrets of the Famous Year-Round Mulch Method

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Our best book pick is the Ruth Stout No-Work Garden Book: Secrets of the Famous Year-Round Mulch Method. This book is by one author, Ruth Stout. She is considered the Queen of Mulch Gardening and has written many books before on the topic.

What makes this book our top pick is the fact that it contains many tips and tricks to follow for year-round gardening. The information is quite detailed, so even a beginner gardener could follow along with ease.

4. The AHS Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques: A step-by-step guide to key skills

Our rating: 8 / 10

The AHS Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques: A step-by-step guide to key skills

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Pros:

  • The A-Z guide breaks down techniques into easy to follow phases
  • Organized by methods type, as in ornamental gardening
  • Expert advice for achieving professional results
  • Suitable for all gardeners
  • Detailed guidance
  • A great book for identifying pests and diseases
  • Includes helpful drawings and illustrations

Cons:

  • Most methods require professional use of tools
  • Most methods require professional use of specialized tools
  • You must follow directions to the letter
  • You must follow directions to the letter

The above book is a top pick on our list of the best gardening books. It features illustrations and descriptions that demonstrate how to carry out key gardening techniques. It begins with basic tools and concepts, and works its way through soils and ground work, plant care, and decorative gardening and more.

It breaks the information down into easy to follow steps, and you can open the book to just about any page and find a wealth of information. Experts from the American Horticultural Society have provided all of the information in this book. It will help you to achieve professional results and have the garden that you have always wanted.

5. The Old Farmer's Almanac Vegetable Gardener’s Handbook

Our rating: 7 / 10

The Old Farmer's Almanac Vegetable Gardener’s Handbook

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Pros:

  • Extensive, valuable research from cover to cover
  • The book is well-organized and easy to read even for beginners
  • Suitable for seasoned farmers as well as beginners
  • Contains illustrations and charts for easier understanding
  • Plenty of value for the price tag

Cons:

  • Long-term usefulness of advice is limited by short growing seasons
  • Not enough information on insect measures
  • Doesn’t provide as much insight as other guides

Written by decades of experts in the industry, the Old Farmer’s Almanac Vegetable Gardener’s Handbook is the definitive handbook for vegetable gardeners. With the help of years of research and study, the experts in the Old Farmer’s Almanac have released a book jam-packed with valuable information and advice that will have you on the road to a successful harvest in no time.

This book breaks down each section of food gardening by season and includes the detailed information on:

  • Fertilizing and Soil Health
  • Growing 30 Specific Vegetable Types
  • Easy to Follow Placement Guide
  • Soil Testing
  • And Much More!

6. All New Square Foot Gardening

Our rating: 7 / 10

All New Square Foot Gardening

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Pros:

  • New projects, solutions, and photos
  • Easy to read
  • Ideal for beginners
  • Comprehensive gardening tips

Cons:

  • Takes too long to get into technique
  • Does not cover use of plastic shelters for northern gardening
  • Black and white photos only

The third edition of All New Square Foot Gardening is a walk through of how to create a Square Foot Garden. The book is a very detailed walk through of how to build a Square Foot Garden, start to finish. It also includes a troubleshooting guide, step by step instructions on how to garden, and how to take care of your plants.

This book has an array of information for both beginner and expert Square Foot Gardeners. The Growing Great Tomatoes In Pesky Places section will help the newer gardener learn how to grow a great tomato. This book covers many areas for the basic gardeners. This book will have the Square Foot Gardener covered for all seasons.

7. Field Guide to Urban Gardening: How to Grow Plants

Our rating: 7 / 10

Field Guide to Urban Gardening: How to Grow Plants

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This book contains a wealth of information for urban gardeners. It separates the book into topics that are broken down into subsections for easy reference. The main focus of the book is urban gardening but it also covers vertical gardening, balcony gardening, rainy day gardening, hydroponics, aquaponics, green roofs, and container gardening. Each topic is covered with methods and tips on how to best craft the garden. Packed with beautiful photography and illustrations of the different styles of gardening this book can act as a guide and be a fun read.

The only issue with this book is that it may be too basic for some readers. If you have a large of gardening experience, this book may not hold your attention for long as it simply covers some of the basics. However, the author makes it clear that the book was written for newbies.

While the design of this book makes it easy to reference particular gardening options, there is a considerable amount of overlap between the different topics. Essentially, there is no need to buy this book if you have another gardening book already. However, the book could accompany an experienced gardener to remind them of the types of gardening not covered in their other book.

8. Growing Food in a Hotter

Our rating: 7 / 10

Growing Food in a Hotter

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Pros:

  • Great book for reducing your carbon footprint
  • Great book for gardening if you're planning on growing food in a drier environment
  • Great book for urban gardening
  • Great book for gardening with less possible water resources
  • Great book for small gardeners

This book by Laura Lengkow is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint and save money at the same time by growing your own food. Since the world is becoming warmer and drier, you must be thinking about how to best plant your garden in a hotter and drier environment.

This amazing book will walk you through different ways to make your gardening efforts environmentally responsible as well as efficient.

As the author says "this book is for everyone who has ever had a vegetable garden and wanted it to be productive, beautiful, and sustainable". It's an easier read than many of the books on the market, so it is a great book for the beginner gardener.

9. Worms Eat My Garbage

Our rating: 7 / 10

Worms Eat My Garbage

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Pros:

  • High-quality hardcover edition
  • Convincening scientific evidence
  • Organized and written by an expert
  • Practical methods described

On How to Create Zero Waste, by Mary Appelhof.

Plants have a natural process of recycling all the nutrients they need from nutrients from the soil, these nutrients are being recycled by worms. Worm composting is a natural, odor-free, hassle-free system of recycling organic matter. It is easy to set up and maintain and is suitable for urban or suburban settings.

Ps:As a fan of gardening, I also love the way the author introduces scientific evidence to illustrate how the system works effectively. I highly recommend this book to both experienced and aspiring gardeners. This book is well received by readers and has been considered one of the best books for readers to learn how to turn household waste into compost at their home.

10. Organic Gardening: The Natural No-dig Way

Our rating: 7 / 10

Organic Gardening: The Natural No-dig Way

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Pros:

  • Provides essential information about how to create a garden that doesn’t require any farming implements (other than your hands and a shovel)
  • Discusses the overall role of compost and soil in a natural, organic gardening environment
  • Includes a chapter on further reading and research
  • The information is concise and user-friendly

By Susannah McCorkle.

If your garden is loaded with weeds and the plants aren’t thriving, you might want to consider creating a no-till natural garden using McCorkle’s book, Organic Gardening: The Natural No-Dig Way.

McCorkle breaks down the concept of “no-till” gardening in a clear, concise manner that’s easy for beginners to understand. Her no-dig gardening method is ideal for small-scale organic gardening and is soft enough to prevent damage to plant roots. It requires very little effort from the gardener.

11. Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web

Our rating: 7 / 10

Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web

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Pros:

  • Well written and easy to understand
  • You don’t need any previous knowledge
  • Written in a very approachable style
  • Approachable tone
  • Offers hands-on growing advice

Cons:

  • Not the most sexy or fancy book
  • Not as comprehensive as other books in its category
  • Not for those looking for a lot of science

The Soil Foodweb: A Gardener's Guide to the Underground Ecosystem by Jeff Lowenfels and Wayne Lewis is one of the most highly rated gardening books on Amazon. If you are new to microbiology and microbiology in the garden, this is the book to begin with.

This book discusses the role the microorganisms play in the garden, what they are, how to test them, and how to nurture them to improve the health of your garden.

What's crazy is that these guys are so small that they cannot be seen with the naked eye. The book is very friendly, in-depth, and presents a lot of useful information. It's not for those who want a lot of science, just hands-on advice.

12. Teaming with Fungi: The Organic Grower's Guide to Mycorrhizae

Our rating: 7 / 10

Teaming with Fungi: The Organic Grower's Guide to Mycorrhizae

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Pros:

  • Provides information about the mycorestoration potential of fungal organisms
  • Provides background information about the habitat, ecology, and natural history of mycorrhizal fungi
  • Offers innovative ways in which practitioners can utilize fungal allies

13. Rodale's Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening: The Indispensable Green Resource

Our rating: 7 / 10

Rodale's Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening: The Indispensable Green Resource

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Pros:

  • Written by the gardening experts at Rodale
  • Hundreds of helpful tips and concepts
  • Wide variety of topics
  • 314 pages loaded with detailed information
  • Can be used both indoor and outdoors
  • Perfectly written for both novice and experienced gardeners
  • Great for the novice who wants to learn more about organic gardening
  • Can be used either as an all-in-one or in conjunction with other reference books
  • Curved spine won’t snap back closed
  • Plenty of color photos

14. Botany for Gardeners

Our rating: 7 / 10

Botany for Gardeners

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Pros:

  • Great book for beginners
  • Comes with a DVD that performs 4-hours of instructional lessons which can be projected on the classroom wall
  • Covers tools, soils, pests, fertilizers, irrigation, and pest control

Cons:

  • Covers only the basics
  • Not designed for experienced gardeners

If you love gardening then you have to have a copy of this book in your collection. The book covers topics like your first garden, creating a forest garden, basic gardening skills, and even growing plants and vegetables in containers.

This book is a must have on the shelf of any beginner gardener. It is also a valuable resource for teachers as it comes with a DVD, which covers four hours of instructional lessons.

If you’re looking for in-depth information then this is not the book for you. But, if you are looking for a solid foundation of botany for planting and gardening, this book is definitely the one you need to read.

15. Teaming with Nutrients: The Organic Gardener’s Guide to Optimizing Plant Nutrition

Our rating: 7 / 10

Teaming with Nutrients: The Organic Gardener’s Guide to Optimizing Plant Nutrition

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Pros:

  • Provides a comprehensive overview of fertilizer basics
  • Makes plant nutrition accessible for both beginners and advanced gardeners
  • Covers a wide range of topics pertaining to fertilizers.

Cons:

  • Not a very large inventory in topics covered (only focuses on fertilizers)
  • Title is a bit misleading as it provides general information on fertilizers rather than simply focusing on plant nutrition itself.

We love this book’s title, and it’s stated goal – to help turn would-be organic gardeners into successful ones. And it does achieve this objective as it thoroughly explores the principles of organic fertilizing and gives readers advice on how to achieve their desired results after application. Honestly, it’s one of the best books we’ve read on the subject.

The book covers an unbeatable wealth of topics, and is filled with effective advice. It teaches readers which nutrients they need to nourish specific plants, and how to figure out how much of each nutrient they should use. It also covers topics like manure and slurry … a topic which most writers don’t discuss, but should. Additionally, it covers the finer points of fertilizer application.

16. RHS Gardening Through The Year

Our rating: 7 / 10

RHS Gardening Through The Year

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Pros:

  • Includes a year’s worth of gardening inspiration
  • Provides instructions for sowing, planting, and maintenance
  • Chapters on specific plants, such as vegetables, flowers, herbs, and fruit trees
  • Colour photos and easy-to-follow instructions

The RHS Gardening Through The Year is a pocket calendar that provides inspiration year-round for planning a successful gardening season. It has over 300 pages which gives you a healthy harvest throughout the year, with professional tips and tips from the RHS team for growing and caring for your garden.

The calendar is packed with handy information, so you can learn everything from harvesting and storing edible plants, to growing great vegetables, herbs, flowers, and fruits and vines. It has sections on wildlife and pests, and provides professional maintenance tips to help you stay organized.

RHS Gardening Through The Year is great for both lifelong gardeners and those who are new to gardening.

17. The Well-Tended Perennial Garden: The Essential Guide to Planting and Pruning Techniques

Our rating: 7 / 10

The Well-Tended Perennial Garden: The Essential Guide to Planting and Pruning Techniques

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Pros:

  • Suitable for novice gardeners
  • Packed with all the essential details like type of soil, water drainage, and height of the plant
  • Plan guidance included
  • Lists popular varieties for each plant
  • Recommended by horticulturists

Cons:

  • Certain tips lack details and are rarely practical
  • Covers only perennial plants
  • Lacks a section on shrubs and vines

The Well-Tended Perennial Garden is a comprehensive guide on perennial gardening. The book includes in-depth discussions on specific perennial gardens divided into two groups “ annually pruned and perennials that are not pruned each year.

The Well-Tended Perennial Garden also discusses companion planting. The book gives readers advice on selecting the right site, most suitable plants, and how to care for them by watering, fertilizing, and pruning.

It also gives suggestions on how to properly care for the plants to ensure a beautiful display each year. The third edition of the book includes a new and improved section on controlling pests and diseases, as well as planting trees.

18. Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How

Our rating: 7 / 10

Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How

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Pros:

  • Easy, step-by-step instructions
  • Covers basics as well as advanced techniques
  • Tips and guidance
  • Great for any small scale garden
  • Big and beautiful pictures
  • No-nonsense advice on composting

Last, but surely not the least; we have Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How for Small-Space Living by Joyce A. Tobin. This gardening book is an excellent guide for anyone who wants to learn composting, and how to make compost for home.

Compost city gives you a step by step procedure on every little thing you need to know when composting. It’s great for beginners and advanced home gardeners. It’s written in a very practical fashion and the best part is that ever step is illustrated in detail with beautiful pictures.

The book tells you all the things you need to know about composting, like: insights into the world of earthworms; what to compost, why to compost and how to compost. The book also takes a great deal of effort to focus on the benefits of composting. You get a glimpse into the amazing world of composting and how you can reduce your household waste by using the compost to enhance your gardening activities.

19. Trellises, Planters & Raised Beds: 50 Easy

Our rating: 7 / 10

Trellises, Planters & Raised Beds: 50 Easy

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Pros:

  • Lots of DIY ideas to try out
  • Affordable
  • Very easy to understand
  • Good quality paper

This book has 50 different and easy plans and ideas you can try out. It shows you how to make your own garden planters, bee boxes, and many more items. You will be guided step by step through the construction of each item, and find out how to use scrap materials.

This book includes a variety of practical and clever ideas to help you build a rustic garden. Each plan will allow you to recycle or save your money because are so easy to make.

20. How Plants Work: The Science Behind the Amazing Things Plants Do

Our rating: 7 / 10

How Plants Work: The Science Behind the Amazing Things Plants Do

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Pros:

  • Easy to read and informative
  • It helps you design plants into any design you want
  • Ideal for beginners and seasoned gardeners
  • You can learn how to build a fairy garden and create unique plant habitats for insects
  • Lots of illustrations
  • An included CD-ROM

Practical, hands-on manual that explains how plants function and why they do the crazy things they do. It teaches you about their anatomy, where the energy comes from, and how they behave and how you can use that behavior to your advantage.

A good guide for ambitious gardeners who want to take their plants to the next level, this book will help you create something beautiful and bountiful. From choosing which plants work best in specific areas to understanding their needs, this book has everything you need to know.

21. The Rodale Book of Composting

Our rating: 7 / 10

The Rodale Book of Composting

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Pros:

  • Easy to read
  • Covers all aspects of composting
  • Suitable for novice and more experienced gardeners
  • Extensive resource list

Cons:

  • Isn’t a step-by-step instruction guide
  • Some people feel it offers a lot of information that may seem unrelated to composting

If you’re looking to improve your composting efforts, this is the book for you. It guides you through not just composting, but everything you need to know to make your composting venture successful.

These authors have extensive experience with composting in big and small scale gardens and offers advice on how to improve the process.

This composting guide is ideal for people with little composting experience, people new to the hobby and people with years of experience.

22. Carrots Love Tomatoes: Secrets of Companion Planting

Our rating: 7 / 10

Carrots Love Tomatoes: Secrets of Companion Planting

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Pros:

  • A must-have for every gardener
  • Comprehensive resource to companion planting
  • Written by one of the best-selling author on gardening
  • Over 200 illustrations for better understanding

Cons:

  • The book is a bit bulky and weighs just over three pounds
  • It covers everything from seed to harvest
  • It serves both as a guidebook and a reference guide for years to come

2nd Edition.

Foreword by Dianne Cohen, PhD, author of Backyard Foraging.

As a home-based gardener, I find it essential to understand the inter-relation of various plant species. Carrots Love Tomatoes is one book that will never be out of my library.

23. No Dig Organic Home & Garden: Grow

Our rating: 7 / 10

No Dig Organic Home & Garden: Grow

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Pros:

  • Comprehensive advice for vegetable gardening, fruit and nut trees, and greenhouses
  • No Dig gardening offers less work than traditional gardening
  • Covers all the tools and tips you need to grow a garden with no back-breaking digging
  • Included composting guide will help reduce waste and save time

Of Vegetables, Fruit, Eggs, Herbs & More, Without the Soil.

If you are looking for a way to truly go green, this book by Sarah Copeland is a great find. No Dig Organic Gardening, by Sarah Copeland, is a series of holistic gardening tips that will help you maximize the amount of produce you can produce in little time.

It covers everything from how to get your yard ready for organic gardening, to the right way to choose plants, soil preparation, and even some handy hints for pest control.

24. The Vegetable Gardener's Book of Building Projects: 39 Essentials to Increase the Bounty and Beauty of Your Garden

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Vegetable Gardener's Book of Building Projects: 39 Essentials to Increase the Bounty and Beauty of Your Garden

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Pros:

  • Highly informative and detailed
  • Covers a wide variety of topics
  • Well-organized, easy to read and follow
  • Detailed diagrams
  • Inspiring and motivating
  • Easy to understand the concepts
  • Educational illustrations
  • Solid sample plan
  • Inspirational layout
  • Has "to-do" and "not-to-do" lists

Cons:

  • The content is very heavy and may not be appropriate for beginners
  • The research topics can sometimes be long

This book by Charlie Nardozzi is a successful attempt to put together a book that satisfies many of the biggest challenges gardeners face. It is a very informative book that covers tasks and concepts related to gardening. This well-organized book will introduce you to the world of vegetable gardening, and create positive changes in your gardening skills.

Gardeners have diverse priorities, and high time demands. That's why this book is the ultimate solution to help you answer questions and eliminate doubts about how to successfully grow your vegetables using an organic approach to gardening. The book has six well-organized chapters which can be read independently of each other.

25. Pruning and Training

Our rating: 6 / 10

Pruning and Training

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Pros:

  • Updated information
  • Solid advice
  • Plant descriptions included in each entry
  • Excellent pictures

Cons:

  • Slightly pricey
  • None

And Train Your Fruit Trees, Shrubs, Natives, and Ornamental Trees and Shrubs.

This book is a fantastic resource. No doubt it's the most comprehensive book on pruning and training plants we've ever read. It's truly a classic. It goes from the very basics of pruning and training, to some advanced techniques. If you can only own one book on the subject, owned this one.

In our opinion, this is the only book you need on the subject. It covers training and pruning for most shrubs, trees, and garden plants and trees. It really covers every conceivable aspect of pruning and training multiple species of plants.

26. Native American Gardening: Stories

Our rating: 6 / 10

Native American Gardening: Stories

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Pros:

  • Beautifully written and presented
  • Author has a great enthusiasm for native plants
  • Encourages the use of native plants on a broad scale
  • Includes many recipes that include native plants
  • Gives the expertise from native plant experts in different fields

This is an excellent book on the benefits of gardening with native plants by Jacqueline Houston. She tells her story of why she loves native plants and how growing your own vegetables, but also step-by-step projects on how to make various baskets, pottery, and toys from native plants.

The best part about this book is that it gives you direct links to projects that you can order online. There are also some very interesting recipes that it gives that includes many different types of native plants.

This is a great starting point to learning more about gardening with native plants and is highly recommended for children who want to garden and learn more about where food comes from.

27. Gardening Myths and Misconceptions

Our rating: 6 / 10

Gardening Myths and Misconceptions

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Pros:

  • A short, simple read with excellent advice
  • Concrete examples to back up the text

Cons:

  • Most of the book is dedicated to urban gardening
  • Minor typos and formatting issues

This book from good old Tissue Culture makes for a short but informative read. It has a great Q+A format, allowing for a conversational way of writing. It presents a lot of concrete examples and backs up its claims with citations throughout the text.

The book is divided into 15 sections. They range from "General Gardening to Urban Gardening", "Planting and Fertilizing", "Shade Gardening", and many more.

Gardening Myths and Misconceptions makes for a great reference book and can provide a lot of insight to children and novice gardeners – not to mention the radiant experience gained.

28. The Homebrewer's Garden

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Homebrewer's Garden

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Pros:

  • 96 pages of tips, recipes and guides for your crops
  • Includes tips on starting from seeds or cuttings
  • Comprehensive guide to brewing with herbs and spices
  • Organized by season including month-by-month guides
  • Great for complete newbies or experienced users
  • Thousands of users recommend this book

Cons:

  • Some readers haven't found the value in it compared to other resources
  • Planting charts are a little hard to follow if you're new to planting

The Homebrewer's Garden: How to Grow, Prepare & Use Your Own Hops, Malts & Brewing Herbs (2nd Edition) is an excellent book for those who want to get started with brewing their own beer and are looking to add some homegrown ingredients into the mix.

This book is a must-have for homebrewers of any level. The 96-page book teaches you everything you need to know to get your garden set up and put some great homegrown ingredients into your beer. Those with even a small amount of gardening experience will find a ton of tips and tricks in this book too.

29. Black & Decker The Complete Guide to Greenhouses & Garden Projects: Greenhouses

Our rating: 6 / 10

Black & Decker The Complete Guide to Greenhouses & Garden Projects: Greenhouses

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Pros:

  • Easy to follow instructions
  • 100 pages
  • Full color and well-illustrated
  • Comprehensive projects to build cold frames and greenhouses

This book covers just about every gardening project you can think of using the Black Decker tools. It has easy to follow instructions and awesome illustrations. “Hammer? I don’t need no stinking hammer”.

I like references to the Black & Decker tools. I use B&D tools myself, so I can relate. The book covers in-depth, with plenty of step-by-step instructions, how to construct wood and PVC structures to support plants like cold frames, planter boxes, trellises, compost bins, fences, and greenhouses. It really is the “complete guide”.

This is not a book to read through sequentially. It is a reference book you can turn to time and time again when you need specific information, like how to build a cold frame made of wood.

30. Decoding Gardening Advice: The Science Behind the 100 Most Common Recommendations

Our rating: 6 / 10

Decoding Gardening Advice: The Science Behind the 100 Most Common Recommendations

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Pros:

  • Author James Wong is a professor of statistics and is the author of the blog Statsize
  • Exposes myths and other gardening facts that are misleading or false
  • Not only does it discuss the science behind gardening advice, but also provides a lot of numbers, research and statistics
  • A good guide when building your own dream garden

Cons:

  • Some readers have complained about the tone of the author, how he can come off sounding arrogant
  • If you don't keep up with your gardening journal, you may have a hard time following along.

For those who don't keep up with the latest readings on gardening, or those who trust more in what their friends tell/recommend them, this is an excellent pickup. You'll learn how to decipher the truth when it comes to gardening and figuring out what does and doesn't work.

31. The Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in the Pacific Northwest

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in the Pacific Northwest

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Pros:

  • Suitable for Pacific Northwest area
  • Presents information in a very descriptive manner
  • Useful for newbie as well as veteran gardeners
  • Just the right amount of detail

Cons:

  • The treatment of difficult subjects can be vague
  • Sub-par production quality
  • Doesn’t present new and exciting ideas

This is a great book for the Pacific Northwest home gardeners who want to put in a vegetable garden and get great results from it. You get to learn all about soil preparation, fertilizing, planting, pest control, and germination. The Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in the Pacific Northwest also talks about how to grow each different vegetable and when to grow them. The different soil types are also explained along with how to remedy any problems you may be facing.

It discusses the different varieties of vegetables that work well in each season and how your outdoor garden can be maintained. Since this book is based on the Pacific Northwest you can expect to have the usual vegetables that are grown here less the corn and pole beans.

The Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in the Pacific Northwest has a good amount of information for anyone who would like to create an organic and successful outdoor garden. You will have a lot of success with this book, so give it a chance to help you grow the garden of your dreams.

32. The Drunken Botanist

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Drunken Botanist

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Pros:

  • Appealing design
  • Wide range of info
  • Lots of illustrations
  • Informative
  • Great gift idea
  • Very entertaining
  • Solid tribute to the art of bartending
  • Completely unique
  • Fun activity for those who love to learn new skills

Cons:

  • Smaller than expected
  • All-around great product that I highly recommend!

33. The New Seed-Starters Handbook

Our rating: 6 / 10

The New Seed-Starters Handbook

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Pros:

  • Easy Grow Guide on seed packets
  • New tips and techniques to get a head start on gardens
  • Garden-ready checklist for planning garden
  • Camping-ready checklist for getting started
  • One of the best college textbook to start seed starting

Cons:

  • Expensive at 38.88 on Amazon
  • May be a little advanced if you haven't started a garden in years
  • Not as thorough as other books about seed starting
  • No photos of completed gardens
  • Not as many pictures

The "New Seed-Starters Handbook" is by far one of the best gardening books and is a fantastic tool for any level of gardener. This book is the official visual guide to starting seeds. But what's so different about The New Seed-Starters Handbook from other seed-starting books is that it offers the best seed-starting results in even the worst weather.

If you're looking for the best college textbook to start seed-starting, this is the one. This is the ideal seed-starting manual for any gardener who wants to learn all there is about starting seeds.

34. The Drought-Defying California Garden: 230 Native Plants

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Drought-Defying California Garden: 230 Native Plants

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Pros:

  • Features drought resistant plants
  • Includes a range of plants for all seasons in both color and texture
  • Excellent tips and fundamentals for gardening and landscaping
  • Includes a wide range of plants that are easy to care for and maintain
  • Budget-friendly and budget-friendly plants
  • Outlines what exactly is required for each season
  • Helpful pictures and mock-up planned gardens that show the featured plants in the landscape

Cons:

  • Written by a landscape architect, this book focuses on California native plant gardens.
  • Somewhat more of a beginners book
  • Not much information is given on maintenance of the plants included
  • Could be better explained with multiple pictures

This book by Erika Springer is probably one of the best books for learning about drought-tolerant, low-water gardens. Erika Springer is a landscape architect with a degree in Landscape Architecture from Cal Poly, and she's a native Californian.

Erika has spent many years creating beautiful and well-sustained landscapes for all types of clients, including commercial, residential, and landscape designers.

This book includes a wide variety of native plants that have been proven over time to be drought tolerant and low-water. The plants included in this book can grow in California, and there are many useful tips about watering, fertilizing, and pruning.

35. The Mother Earth News Guide to Vegetable Gardening: Building and Maintaining Healthy Soil * Wise Watering * Pest Control Strategies * Home Composting … of Growing Guides

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Mother Earth News Guide to Vegetable Gardening: Building and Maintaining Healthy Soil * Wise Watering * Pest Control Strategies * Home Composting ... of Growing Guides

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Pros:

  • Designed for families
  • Comprehensive seeds lists
  • How-to gardening guides
  • Simple instructions
  • Excellent illustrations

Cons:

  • Short lived
  • Can never include enough practical examples

Grasses, Flowers, Herbs & More.

This book contains more than 450 detailed how-to instructions, along with troubleshooting tips and valuable lists of useful information to assist in successful gardening. It also contains helpful lists of all-natural non-toxic pest control solutions, along with background on gardening strategies, and seasonal reminders.

This book from Robert Kourik is an absolute must-have for gardeners who are farmers also. Robert Kourik, one of America’s foremost experts on sustainable gardening, is a humble, down-to-earth guide in this information driven guide to sustainable organic gardening.

36. How to Prune Fruit Trees

Our rating: 6 / 10

How to Prune Fruit Trees

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Pros:

  • Considered the most comprehensive fruit tree book out there
  • Simple step-by-step details on how to prune your own fruit trees
  • Covered perennials, ornamental shrubs, roses, grapes, fruit trees, and vegetables and herbs
  • Written by university professors, horticulturists, and professionals
  • Updated for the latest gardening techniques
  • Written in a conversational tone
  • Overall size is 8.4 x 6 inches and contains over 270 pages

Cons:

  • Some parts of the book are outdated
  • Not recommended for landscapers or developers

A Step-by-Step Guide to Pruning and Training Hardy Fruits & Nut Trees

What sets this book apart from others is its conversational tone and overall comprehensive nature. It features a host of up-to-date, simple techniques that only a few pages ago would have been considered out of reach by amateur gardeners.

It’s designed especially for the small-space landscaper, and focuses on the best growing techniques for a fruit tree.

37. How to Grow and Make Tea in the United States

Our rating: 6 / 10

How to Grow and Make Tea in the United States

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Pros:

  • Great for those who have little or no experience in gardening and tea growing
  • Contains detailed information on growing tea plants from seed to harvest
  • All-natural landscaping ideas using tea plants and herbs
  • Illustrated with over 100 color photographs
  • Written by expert gardeners and tea plantation owners

Cons:

  • The advice given is very basic
  • Not a comprehensive guide to growing tea plants
  • Some sections of the book need proper proofreading

This is a very special publication released in the year 2016 with contributions from experts in the field. It offers solutions to all the most pressing questions about how to grow and make tea in the United States. It contains a lot of information on tea plant cultivation that you cannot find it elsewhere in a single publication.

This guide has been written by tea experts who have over 40 years of experience each in the field of tea growing and who have collected their knowledge from kitchens and tea rooms in the US. The publication contains clear and concise instructions on how to grow and care for tea plants, how to make your own organic insect repellent, how to make your own natural pesticide and fertilizers.

38. Planting the Natural Garden

Our rating: 6 / 10

Planting the Natural Garden

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39. The Informed Gardener

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Informed Gardener

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Pros:

  • Well-written
  • Highlights in-depth scientific research
  • Offers new approaches to traditional gardening
  • Interviews with leading researchers and gardeners
  • Breaks down complex areas into easily digestible information
  • Inclusions of beautiful high quality images
  • Ideal for gardeners of every experience level
  • Written in a conversational tone

Cons:

  • Doesn’t specifically cover every corner of the gardening spectrum (ie No-dig, Urban Gardening, Aquaponics)
  • There are more advanced books but may be of interest to only particular groups of gardeners

Gardening is one of those things that everyone says that they want to do. But not everyone has been successful in doing so. Not because they don’t want to, but because they don’t know how. This book helps to fill in that gap.

It goes into detail describing the basics of gardening and acts as a primer for how to approach the “art” of garden design. Whether that design is from personal experience, or you are looking for inspiration.

The book is conversational in nature and doesn’t feel like a textbook. Which makes it more accessible to the average person.

40. The Truth About Organic Gardening: Benefits

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Truth About Organic Gardening: Benefits

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Pros:

  • Defines organic gardening in the simplest terms
  • Helps you determine if going organic is right for you
  • Provides specific answers to your burning questions through case studies, facts, and scientific evidence
  • Offers tips on soil preparation, including pH testing and fertilizer options
  • Outlines the benefits and drawbacks of organic gardening
  • Provides the basic tools you need to succeed in organic gardening with advice on building raised beds and compost bins
  • Lets you know if organic gardening is for you

Cons:

  • Comprises a bit of gardening lingo that can be hard to digest for the beginner gardener
  • Lacks accompanying visuals

Written in an easy to digest style, The Truth About Organics: The Benefits, Drawbacks, and Bottom Line provides answers to many questions you might have regarding organic gardening. The book defines organic gardening in the simplest terms, and helps outline how it is different from other gardening styles. You will also find many case studies, as well as facts and scientific evidence that back up the author's claims.

The book then goes on to discuss the basics of organic gardening and gives suggestions and tips that will help you determine whether or not going organic is for you.

41. Plants Are Terrible People

Our rating: 6 / 10

Plants Are Terrible People

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Pros:

  • Provides a humorous yet practical perspective on plants
  • It understands how plants think and what they want
  • Engaging illustrations
  • Fun and clever read
  • The perfect gift book for friends and family
  • Wonderful for science geeks and plant lovers

This book offers a whole new perspective on plants and their working environment. It gives you a humorous yet accurate perspective on how plants think and behave.

Based on the author’s years of engaging with and observing plants, Plant’s Are Terrible People is for all those who want to make sense of their own indoor hobby. Ideal for gift purposes, this book will have you constantly thinking about the personality of the houseplant in your own home.

The book gives you an interesting insight into the plant world and what they are thinking and the many demands that they have. With its witty humor, it makes you want to read it over and over again.

42. The Informed Gardener Blooms Again

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Informed Gardener Blooms Again

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Pros:

  • Comprehensive and detailed
  • Easy to use
  • Gives helpful suggestions for gardeners of all kinds of experience
  • Includes tips on attracting wildlife into your garden

Cons:

  • Takes a bit of time to read through
  • Often uses flower names which are hard to relate to for people who aren’t that knowledgeable about gardening

Another wonderful gardening book by this author, this book is a complete guide to gardening and planting. It features information on how to grow seeds, make soil, and compost. It will also help you keep everything in your garden thriving and will give helpful tips to create your dream garden.

Everything in this book is very comprehensive, and you can easily find anything by using the table of contents where you can see what has been included and then go directly to the subject of your interest.

This book also gives very detailed information that will be very helpful if you want to better understand how gardening works. If you are a beginner gardener, having this book with you will make your experience better, and you can get your garden looking as beautiful as possible.

43. The Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in Southern California

Our rating: 6 / 10

The Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in Southern California

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Pros:

  • Good reviews from former readers
  • Comprehensive information from both a region and plant perspective
  • Uses a step-by-step approach to gardening
  • Readers said it was a good value for the price

Cons:

  • Some readers claimed it was confusing to use
  • Some readers claimed the information was biased

We love this book series of the Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in Southern California. It is ideal for any individual who likes to garden or is planning to start a new vegetable garden for the first time.

This book teaches readers how to easily grow vegetables and get to know all of the fruits that Southern California is famous for. You will find helpful gardening tips on how to garden and how to create the most efficient space for your plants.

This guide is ideal for people who want to start a vegetable garden and utilize the surrounding resources as much as possible. It teaches you how to transform your backyard into a picture perfect space to plant your vegetables.

44. Designing California Native Gardens: The Plant Community Approach to Artful

Our rating: 5 / 10

Designing California Native Gardens: The Plant Community Approach to Artful

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Pros:

  • Beautiful shots of gardens
  • Easy to read and well organized chapters
  • Highlights California native plants
  • Provides step-by-step instructions for gardening
  • Highlighting amazing plant facts
  • Explains various kinds of gardens and looks
  • Tips for tools and plant choices
  • Addresses numerous gardening issues
  • Deals with maintenance issues
  • Talks about landscaping issues

45. The Truth About Garden Remedies: What Works

Our rating: 5 / 10

The Truth About Garden Remedies: What Works

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Pros:

  • Concise and to the point
  • Authoritative source of professional advice
  • Information organized into easily digestible sections
  • Authoritative resource

This book is a friendly and down-to-earth introduction to the ins and outs of gardening. Packed with helpful tips and easy-to-follow solutions, this guide will help readers become practical, savvy gardeners.

Written by Brian Capon, an expert on horticultural science and the outdoors, this book is an authoritative source of professional advice on gardening. Not only does it offer information on topics like the different types of soils and their benefits, it also covers the appropriate tools, equipment, and seeds for some of the most popular plants on the market today.

Each topic is covered in a concise and to the point manner, making this book a fabulous reference for your bookshelf. Whether you are a beginner or an expert gardener, this book certainly has something to offer to anyone. It offers authoritative information for any of the most common gardening questions, and is organized into easily digestible sections that can be accessed with ease. Whether you are interested in the different types of soils, the appropriate tools for growing various plants, or even help with a new garden project, this book will certainly have something for you.

Conclusion

While there are many great online resources available, nothing beats being able to read through the pages of a book and fully commit the knowledge to memory. I love having a PDF on my iPad, but when I’m doing research or trying to refer back to an idea, nothing beats flipping through the pages of a hardback book. Books are a wonderful way to broaden your horticultural horizons and teach you new methods of gardening or container gardening.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Straw Bale Gardens Complete: Breakthrough Vegetable Gardening MethodBest OverallStraw Bale Gardens Complete: Breakthrough Vegetable Gardening Method
The Truth About Garden Remedies: What WorksBudget PickThe Truth About Garden Remedies: What Works
How to Grow and Make Tea in the United StatesUpgrade PickHow to Grow and Make Tea in the United States