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Home > Books > Gardening

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101.

APARTMENT GARDENING

Amy Pennington
Paperback

Price: $18.95

No yard? No problem. With more than 80 percent of the American population living in urban areas, Urban Pantry author Amy Pennington details how to start your own garden in the heart of the city. Wheth…

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No yard? No problem. With more than 80 percent of the American population living in urban areas, Urban Pantry author Amy Pennington details how to start your own garden in the heart of the city. Whether you're a veteran gardener or a novice getting your hands dirty for the first time, this book provides hands-on advice to start using urban space in a sustainable, efficient and inexpensive manner. Learn how to creatively grow squash on windowsills, flowers in planter boxes and cucumbers on trellises: Every inch of your home offers an opportunity for something planted, pickled or preserved. Be a part of the rapidly growing do-it-yourself movement! Pennington's friendly voice paired with Kate Bingham-Burt's illustrations make greener living an accessible reality.

About the author:

Amy Pennington is a gardener, writer and girl about town. She runs her own gardening business called Go Go Green Garden and is the author of Urban Pantry. Pennington lives in Seattle.

102.

ORGANIC SEED PRODUCTION & SAVING

Bryan Connolly
Paperback

Price: $12.95

Part of the NOFA (Northeast Organic Farming Association) guides. Includes information on:

  • Strengths and limitations of hybrid varieties
  • Before you grow the seed (selecting varieties, saving seed and imp…

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Part of the NOFA (Northeast Organic Farming Association) guides. Includes information on:

  • Strengths and limitations of hybrid varieties
  • Before you grow the seed (selecting varieties, saving seed and improving crops, intellectual property rights)
  • Growing seed (pollination biology, harvesting, cleaning, storage, germination testing)
  • Details on individual crops (amaranth, crucifers, beets and chard, lettuce, cucurbits, corn and small grains, nightshades, root veggies)
Plus detailed appendices including more info on seed cleaning, seed companies, and more.

About the author: Bryan Connolly farms organically at his small homestead in northeastern Connecticut where he buys and grows seeds from far and wide to satisfy his fascination with plant genetics. When not "swamping the world with with plant propagules," Bryan raises goats, chickens, and turkeys on the farm and assists customers at the Willimantic Food Coop. He has a master's degree in pollination biology from the University of Connecticut and has worked for the University of Mississippi's Medicinal Plant Garden, New England Wild Flower Society, and the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection.

103.

ORGANIC SOIL-FERTILITY & WEED MANAGEMENT

Steve Gilman
Paperback

Price: $12.95

Soil is a living organism that loves to cooperate with farmers and gardeners. A green thumb will appear on those who align themselves with its health and requirements. This book discusses:

  • Soil habitat

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Soil is a living organism that loves to cooperate with farmers and gardeners. A green thumb will appear on those who align themselves with its health and requirements. This book discusses:

  • Soil habitat
  • Sustaining soil fertility
  • The soil food-web
  • Nutrient availability and deficiency
After reading this book, readers will not only have a different view on soil, but on weeds as well. Knowing and utilizing the energies and characteristics of weeds, as Gilman teaches, will make for a more productive garden, and less stressful gardening.

About the author: Steve Gilman was an organic vegetable grower for thirty years in the Saratoga, New York area before retiring to become the managing director of a USDA regional organic research project called NEON (Northeast Organic Network) in the mid-2000's. Since then he has become policy director for the seven-state NOFA Interstate Council, which is working to build NOFA's policy capacity, and has been representing the organization on the regional and national levels. He continues to grow herbs, vegetables, and medicinals-producing and storing a year-round household food supply from extensive home gardens.

104.

TOMATOLAND

Barry Estabrook
Hardcover

Price: $19.99

Supermarket produce sections bulging with a year-round supply of perfectly round, bright red-orange tomatoes have become all but a national birthright. But in Tomatoland, which is based on his James B…

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Supermarket produce sections bulging with a year-round supply of perfectly round, bright red-orange tomatoes have become all but a national birthright. But in Tomatoland, which is based on his James Beard Award-winning article, "The Price of Tomatoes," investigative food journalist Barry Estabrook reveals the huge human and environmental cost of the $5 billion fresh tomato industry. Fields are sprayed with more than 100 different herbicides and pesticides. Tomatoes are picked hard and green and artificially gassed until their skins acquire a marketable hue. Modern plant breeding has tripled yields, but has also produced fruits with dramatically reduced amounts of calcium, vitamin A and vitamin C, and tomatoes that have 14 times more sodium than the tomatoes our parents enjoyed. The relentless drive for low costs has fostered a thriving modern-day slave trade in the United States. How have we come to this point?

Estabrook traces the supermarket tomato from its birthplace in the deserts of Peru to the impoverished town of Immokalee, Fla., aka the tomato capital of the United States. He visits the laboratories of seedsmen trying to develop varieties that can withstand the rigors of agribusiness and still taste like a garden tomato, and then moves on to commercial growers who operate on tens of thousands of acres, and eventually to a hillside field in Pennsylvania, where he meets an obsessed farmer who produces delectable tomatoes for the nation's top restaurants.

Throughout Tomatoland, Estabrook presents a who's who cast of characters in the tomato industry: the avuncular octogenarian whose conglomerate grows one out of every eight tomatoes eaten in the United States; the ex-Marine who heads the group that dictates the size, color and shape of every tomato shipped out of Florida; the U.S. attorney who has doggedly prosecuted human traffickers for the past decade; and the Guatemalan peasant who came north to earn money for his parents' medical bills and found himself enslaved for two years.

Tomatoland reads like a suspenseful whodunit as well as an exposé of today's agribusiness systems and the price we pay as a society when we take taste and thought out of our food purchases.

105.

THE ONE-BLOCK FEAST

Margo True
Paperback

Price: $24.99

Based on the James Beard Award–winning blog The One-Block Diet, this all-in-one home gardening, do-it-yourself guide and cookbook shows you how to transform a backyard or garden into a self-sufficient…

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Based on the James Beard Award–winning blog The One-Block Diet, this all-in-one home gardening, do-it-yourself guide and cookbook shows you how to transform a backyard or garden into a self-sufficient locavore’s paradise.

When Margo True and her fellow staffers at Northern California–based Sunset magazine walked around the grounds of their Menlo Park office, they saw more than just a lawn and some gardens. Instead, they saw a fresh, bountiful food source, the makings for intrepid edible projects, and a series of seasonal feasts — all just waiting to happen.

The One-Block Feast is the story of how True and her team took an inspired idea and transformed it into an ambitious commitment: to create four feasts over the course of a year, using only what could be grown or raised in their backyard-sized plot. She candidly shares the group’s many successes and often humorous setbacks as they try their hands at chicken farming, cheese making, olive pressing, home brewing, beekeeping, winemaking and more.

Grouped into gardening, project and recipe guides for each season, The One-Block Feast is a complete resource for planning an eco-friendly kitchen garden; making your own pantry staples for year-round cooking and gifts; raising bees, chickens and even a cow; and creating made-from-scratch meals from ingredients you’ve grown yourself. Chapters are organized by season, each featuring a planting plan and crop-by-crop instructions, an account of how that season’s projects played out for the Sunset team, and a multicourse dinner menu composed of imaginative, appealing and ultra-resourceful vegetarian recipes, such as:

Butternut Squash Gnocchi With Chard and Sage Brown Butter, Egg and Gouda Crepes, Whole Wheat Pizzas With Roasted Vegetables and Homemade Cheeses, Fresh Corn Soup With Zucchini Blossoms, Braised Winter Greens With Preserved Lemons and Red Chile, Summer Lemongrass Custards, Honey Ice Cream

Generously illustrated and easy to follow, this ultimate resource for today’s urban homesteader will inspire you to take “eating local” to a whole new level.

Recommended Product for Wiser Living: Today, more than ever before, our society is seeking ways to live more conscientiously. To help bring you the very best inspiration and information about greener, more sustainable lifestyles, MOTHER EARTH NEWS is recommending books to readers. For 40 years, MOTHER EARTH NEWS has been North America’s “Original Guide to Living Wisely,” creating books and magazines for people with a passion for self-reliance and a desire to live in harmony with nature.

106.

A HOUSEHOLDER'S GUIDE TO THE UNIVERSE

Harriet Fasenfest
Paperback

Price: $16.95

In an era when "go local," "organic food" and "sustainability" are on the tip of everyone's tongues, Harriet Fasenfest's A Householder's Guide to the Universe takes up the banner of progressive homema…

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In an era when "go local," "organic food" and "sustainability" are on the tip of everyone's tongues, Harriet Fasenfest's A Householder's Guide to the Universe takes up the banner of progressive homemaking and urban farming as a way to confront the political, social and environmental issues facing our world today. Offering grass-roots practical advice on how to shop, garden, run a household, preserve and cook food, and more, Fasenfest also discusses the philosophy of householding.

In A Householder's Guide to the Universe, which is organized according to season and presented in monthly installments, Fasenfest invites the reader into her home, garden and kitchen to consider concrete tools for change. Streetwise and poetic, fierce and romantic, the book provides not only a way out of our current economic and environmental logjam but also a readable and often funny analysis of how we got there.

About the author:
Harriet Fasenfest is an avid gardener, food preserver, homemaker and lover of the soil. At 56, Harriet officially fled Main Street (and her restaurants) for the greener pastures of the backyard, where she teaches classes on householding. Born and raised in the Bronx, she currently lives in Portland, Ore.

107.

GATHERING: MEMOIR OF A SEED SAVER

Diane Ott Whealy
Hardcover

Price: $25.00

Daughter of Iowa farmers, Missouri homesteader and mother of five, Diane Ott Whealy never anticipated that one day she would become a leader in a grass-roots movement to preserve our agricultural biod…

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Daughter of Iowa farmers, Missouri homesteader and mother of five, Diane Ott Whealy never anticipated that one day she would become a leader in a grass-roots movement to preserve our agricultural biodiversity. The love for the land and the respect for heirloom seeds that Ott Whealy shared with her husband, Kent, led to their starting Seed Savers Exchange in 1975.

Seed Savers Exchange, the nation’s premier nonprofit seed-saving organization, began humbly as a simple exchange of seeds among passionate gardeners who sought to preserve the rich gardening heritage their ancestors had brought to this country. Seeds that Ott Whealy herself inherited from her paternal grandparents were the impetus for the formation of Seed Savers Exchange, whose membership has grown from a small coterie to more than 13,000. Its influence has been felt in gardens across America.

Ott Whealy’s down-to-earth narrative traces her fascinating journey from Oregon to Kansas to Missouri then back home to Iowa where, in 1986, Heritage Farm became the permanent home of Seed Savers Exchange. Her heartwarming story captures what is best in the American spirit: the ability to dream and, through hard work and perseverance, inspire others to contribute their efforts to a cause. Thus was created one of the nation’s most admired nonprofits in the field of genetic preservation.

108.

THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO GROWING WINDOWSILL PLANTS

Angela Williams Duea
Paperback

Price: $15.93

A windowsill is among the best possible places to put a plant that provides ample sunlight, brightens the look of your home from the outside, and adds what amounts to a filter to the air coming in and…

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A windowsill is among the best possible places to put a plant that provides ample sunlight, brightens the look of your home from the outside, and adds what amounts to a filter to the air coming in and out of your home. In winter, they can add a touch of color to an otherwise drab view, and in summer they thrive. But not every plant grows well in these conditions: According to Garden Guides, as many as 40 percent of most houseplants don't need nearly that much sunlight. The selection of the right houseplants for your windowsill is a necessary step to ensuring they survive and thrive.

This book will guide you through the steps needed to select the perfect plants for your windowsill and cultivate them to both fit in with your space and to survive the conditions, whether inside or outside. You will learn everything you need to know to effectively plant windowsill plants and improve how your home and your windows look to the world outside. You will learn, through a series of detailed charts, which plants are best suited to the cramped space of a windowsill and which ones will only give you problems. You will learn how much light each plant needs and how much water and food they need and whether you need to supplement natural provision of these resources. You will learn how to care for your plants while keeping away pests and animals that may eat the leaves or dig up the dirt.

Top experts in gardening have been interviewed and their insights will help you learn what works and what doesn't work for your windowsill plants. From first planting, whether by seed or potted plant, you will have every resource you need to keep your windowsill plants alive and thriving in their new environment with this book.

109.

AQUAPONIC GARDENING

Sylvia Bernstein
Paperback

Price: $29.95

Aquaponics is a revolutionary system for growing plants by fertilizing them with the wastewater from fish in a sustainable closed system. A combination of the best of aquaculture and hydroponics, aq…

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Aquaponics is a revolutionary system for growing plants by fertilizing them with the wastewater from fish in a sustainable closed system. A combination of the best of aquaculture and hydroponics, aquaponic gardening is an amazingly productive way to grow organic vegetables, greens, herbs and fruits, while providing the added benefits of fresh fish as a safe, healthy source of protein. On a larger scale, it is a key solution to mitigating food insecurity, climate change, groundwater pollution and the impacts of overfishing on our oceans.

Aquaponic Gardening is the definitive do-it-yourself home manual, focused on giving you all the tools you need to create your own aquaponic system and enjoy healthy, safe, fresh and delicious food all year round. Starting with an overview of the theory, benefits and potential of aquaponics, the book goes on to explain:

  • System location considerations and hardware components
  • The living elements — fish, plants, bacteria and worms
  • Putting it all together — starting and maintaining a healthy system
Aquaponics systems are completely organic. They are four to six times more productive and use 90 percent less water than conventional gardens. Other advantages include no weeds; fewer pests; and no watering, fertilizing, bending, digging or heavy lifting – in fact, there really is no down side! Anyone interested in taking the next step toward self-sufficiency will be fascinated by this practical, accessible and well-illustrated guide.

About the Author: Sylvia Bernstein is the president and founder of The Aquaponic Source. An internationally recognized expert on aquaponic gardening, Sylvia speaks, writes and blogs (www.theaquaponicsource.com) extensively about this revolutionary technique.

110.

50 BEAUTIFUL DEER-RESISTANT PLANTS

Ruth Rogers Clausen
Paperback

Price: $19.95

What’s the biggest problem facing gardeners? Drought, lack of sun, or the ever-present threat of disease? Nope, it’s deer. The beautiful animals immortalized in Disney's Bambi are also the garden’s bi…

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What’s the biggest problem facing gardeners? Drought, lack of sun, or the ever-present threat of disease? Nope, it’s deer. The beautiful animals immortalized in Disney's Bambi are also the garden’s biggest pests. Increased hunting regulations have caused the deer population to swell to more than 30 million. At the same time, suburban expansion has led to a loss of natural habitat. The result? Deer are looking for food and finding it in gardens all across the country.

50 Beautiful Deer-Resistant Plants makes keeping deer away as simple as choosing the appropriate plant. Instead of the typical barriers and fencing, expert plantswoman Ruth Rogers Clausen has chosen the 50 most beautiful (and least palatable) annuals, bulbs, ferns, grasses, herbs, perennials and shrubs. Whether it's the charming snow crocuses that bloom each spring or the vibrant, long-blooming Texas Sage, these 50 plants provide gardeners a chance to design a deer-proof garden without sacrificing style. Each plant profile includes a deer-resistance scale, tips on growth and care, zone recommendations, and gorgeous color photos showing the plant up close and in the garden setting. Also includes dozens of companion planting ideas.

With the helpful and trusted advice in 50 Beautiful Deer-Resistant Plants, gardeners can finally garden without fear of deer.

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