So, there aren't any questions about gardening books. But there are a lot of gardening books. I don't personally think they're all rubbish.

But I doubt there ever is or will be a definitive book about any broad topic in gardening or landscaping and I'd imagine that we all have our favorites. But what about specifics?

But, what is a good reference for making garden structures with kids?

I'd say chapter X of Roots Shoots Buckets and Boots where the author shows you how to make a cozy nook with gourds and beans growing up.

I'm lazy, what is a good reference for low maintenance gardening?

Check out Tips for the Lazy Gardener, it taught me everything I know.

I'm just thinking we ought to nip this in the bud, as a common issue on most of the other SE's I've been part of. (or should we just wait till someone actually asks, does anyone actually read gardening books anymore?)

  • What is this "book" you speak of?
    – wax eagle
    Commented Jun 10, 2011 at 16:54
  • The ones in that curiously chartreuse section in the public library. Commented Jun 10, 2011 at 17:16

1 Answer 1


I don't think we should discourage such questions. While I too thought that no one read gardening books anymore, I recently chanced upon a gardening/landscaping book: "The Garden Book" by John Brookes and I really liked it. Although such books are not something one would read cover to cover, it is quite good if you're trying to plan out your garden and need some inspiration or ideas.

I can see some areas where a good book might be more informative (and authoritative) than say a random source on the internet: Growing and maintaining bonsais, landscaping tips to grow a Japanese garden, growing orchids, etc.

We can just have a specific tag for it such as or like in Math.SE and related sites and keep them here. Books aren't dead yet and any good "repository of information" should have a list of good books to read on a particular topic.

  • Agree books aren't dead, including gardening books. I have recently welcomed several as gifts and 66% are really useful, not as useful as the Gardening SE site of course!
    – Lisa
    Commented Jul 21, 2011 at 5:42
  • @Lisa: Please note that this answer of mine was written when the site was in its first or second day of private beta. We did try having a "what's your favorite gardening book" or something of that sort and it was only chaos and has been closed and deleted now. So while books are nice, questions on book recommendations are not :) Commented Jul 21, 2011 at 13:44

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