For the Love of Gardening  

What works & What doesn't...


Remember, these garden books or magazines are not in any particular order.... so dig in and read.

I really like the feel of paper books... I like to write in the margins, make notes and add tabs to mark a place or bit to return to.

But you can read these on whatever you like... hopefully most of them will be downloadable... if not, curl up with a cuppa, and read and learn.


THE LOST GARDEN: Helen Humphreys (Canadian)

Excerpt from the jacket:  

1941, a young city horticulturist is sent to the countryside to teach young people how to grow crops for the home front. Of course the twists and turns with the heroine and two  war-weary companions teach about joy and the unbelievable risks of love.

“Planting a garden is about making a series of choices, and then the interpretation of those choices also  becomes  a series of choices”. …

and a favourite of mine

…”Gardening, which needs patience. is often the domain of the impatient.”…

she  uses phrases that are entrancing and  pull us into the story - like this -

“This is (a garden of ) Loss;  a wave of peonies, frozen in the act of crashing to the ground, of going overboard.”




From the cover:

“ A  neglected garden. A cottage that holds a secret. A mysterious Frenchman (handsome, naturally). A family in need of some love…… and a garden, that like love itself, can restore the human spirit, not just season after season, but generation after generation.”

CHARMING..... A lovely read.


A GARDEN OF MARVELS: Ruth Kassinger 

How we Discovered That Flowers Have Sex, Leaves Eat Air, and Other Secrets of Plants

She starts off like this:

“This book was born of a  murder, a murder I committed.” The victim was her beloved Kumquat tree that she decided to prune. Because she knew nothing about pruning, the tree died. So she wouldn’t repeat her failure, she set off on a journey that became a wise and enchanting odyssey, discovering the secret life of plants.

Literally “awe-some”… with anecdotes, accessible science and some history, she tells us things we would never have learned on our own..

A MUST read…


EVERYDAY ROSES: Paul Zimmerman

How to Grow Knock Out and Other Easy-Care Garden Roses

Paul puts the common myths that roses are difficult to bed with his no-nonsense approach and advice with a healthy dose of encouragement so you too, can have beds full of lush, chemical -free, vibrant roses. He dispels the Diva Rose myth and proves that garden roses are just flowering shrubs.

He makes the art of pruning easy and less scary; he shows how to plant and buy roses and includes many video links showing the how-to’s of roses.

This book is a must-own for anyone who wants one rose or a garden full of them.

A MUST read....



Daniel Chamovitz    (Tel Aviv U.)

 A Field Guide to the Senses

How plants experience the world; how a Venus Fly Trap knows when to snap shut; how plants know up from down and whether they appreciate Led Zeppelin or Mozart. 

The most fascinating book about plants I have read.

A MUST read.



Inspiring & Informing Home Gardeners

With passionate gardener-writers like Beckie Fox (also the editor), Judith Adam, Steven Biggs and  photographer Jim Norton, this glorious magazine is truly about what makes the best gardens. 

Published in Ontario, it showcases gardens, garden issues, new plants, and other inspirational and educational articles.

A MUST read.


HOW PLANTS WORK: Linda Chalker-Scott (urban horticulturist) - Washington State U.

The stranger-than-fiction science that explains how  plants tell time; how they move to follow the sun and why; and why they change colour.

Written with frankness and backed by research, she dispels myths and shows why we garden a certain way and why it is successful and why it isn’t.

A MUST read


"Dear Friend and Gardener"

A series of letters about their gardens between Christopher Lloyd and Beth Chatto.

A delightful correspondence between two legends (and friends) with two different styles and how they succeed or fail in their own gardens.

I have read this book twice now and find a few hint, or giggle each time.

Put this one in your library.

Stay tuned for more....because there are piles of them.... 

And be sure to share with me, what you read so we can learn from one another. 

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