Great New Gardening Reads

Photo courtesy of Tim Cummins

What to do when it’s too cold/snowy/wet to work in the garden? That’s the perfect time to browse through new gardening books! Winter is a great time to pause, reflect, and dream of next year’s garden. These 3 new books will give you lots to think about while you page through the beautiful photos!

the-garden-awakening-imageThe Garden Awakening by Mary Reynolds takes an interesting and unusual approach to gardening. Having been a garden designer for over 20 years, Reynolds realized that she had been working diligently to harness and control nature instead of working in harmony with it. In this book, she talks about this process and introduces a new/old way of approaching gardening that invites nature to interact with us to bring the garden into balance. She views the garden as sacred space, and blends old Irish traditions with both ancient and current garden practices. This is a great book for contemplative folks who enjoy exploring both internally and externally. It gives the reader much to think about beyond which plants do well in sun or shade!

 Birds, Bees & Butterflies by Nancy J. Hajeski is an excellent resource if you would like to invite these creatures into your garden. It is packed with solid information and beautiful photos. The book is divided into 3 sections: Birds, Bees, and Butterflies & Moths. Each section provides a good overview of history, habitat, biology, and landscaping and garden ideas followed by detailed information about individual species. The book also covers the challenges birds, bees, and butterflies face in our current environment as well as the benefits of creating gardens that nurture them.

Gardenista by Michelle Slatalla, presents a completely different take on gardening. The premise is that our gardens should be designed and used as another “room” in our homes. Written by the editor of the website by the same name, this book draws on years of research and experimentation. In addition to the usual gardening information about plants, sunlight, and soil composition, this book focuses on style, describing itself as “the definitive guide to stylish outdoor spaces.” Gardenista is packed with beautiful photographs and loads of fun (and potentially pricey) ideas for decorating your outdoor “room.”

So as you settle in for a long winter’s rest, be sure to bring along a gardening book or two to inspire your dreams of spring!

Jill Mickel is a Public Services Specialist and a member of the Arts and Crafts team. Her passions are art and community, and she believes that art is for everyone! When she is not at the library or working in her studio, she can be found gardening, cooking, reading, or bird-watching.