Book Reviews

Book Review: The Landscapes of Anne of Green Gables

It was encircled by huge old willows and tall firs, beneath which flourished flowers that loved the shade. Prim, right-angled paths, neatly bordered with clam-shells, intersected it like moist red ribbons and in the beds between old-fashioned flowers ran riot. In her new book, The Landscapes of Anne of Green Gables (Timber Press, 2018) Catherine…

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Three Books for Grateful Gardeners

Thanksgiving is a turning point in the garden year in the North. There is no denying that the only gardens we’re likely to tend from now until April are indoors or under plastic. It’s a good time for reading, taking classes and getting back to our day jobs. While there are lots of how-to books…

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Book Review: Practical Organic Gardening

This review by Julie Jensen of Practical Organic Gardening: The No-Nonsense Guide to Growing Naturally (Cool Springs Press, 2017) by Mark Highland originally appeared in the September/October issue of Northern Gardener. In the dozen chapters that comprise Practical Organic Gardening, author Mark Highland describes every aspect of growing plants—even lawns!—without synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. Recognizing…

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Book Review: A Little Book of Gardening in Northwest Minnesota

Russ Colson’s Little Book of Gardening in Northwest Minnesota (Create Space, 2017) is a spare, insightful meditation on garden philosophy, with some how-to on the side to keep the reader grounded. It’s the kind of book many devoted gardeners wish they could write to express what they have gained from creating and nurturing a garden.…

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Book Review: Hydroponic Gardening, The Very Easy Way

Larry Cipolla is a well-known Twin Cities University of Minnesota Extension Master Gardener and garden speaker, who tends a wonderful garden in Edina. It combines a Japanese garden with an abundance of water features with innovative vegetable-growing strategies. He’s taken one of his special interests—hydroponic gardening—and provided a detailed discussion of how home gardeners can…

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Book Review: Searching for Minnesota’s Native Wildflowers

As spring creeps up on us, eager lovers of wildflowers will soon begin exploring Minnesota’s forests and natural areas looking for rue anemone, hepatica and Canada mayflower. They will be out again in summer to look for white prairie clover or horned bladderwort; and in fall, searching for signs of white rattlesnake root and heath…

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Book Review: Garden Builder Inspires Your Inner Carpenter

Gardeners like to work with their hands—planting, digging, weeding, watering, creating the perfect container display, sometimes even building things for the garden. To satisfy your inner carpenter, check out Joann Moser’s new book, Garden Builder: Plans and Instructions for 35 Projects You Can Make (Cool Springs Press, 2018). Joann’s book is the first of five…

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Book Review: Homegrown Pantry

Who among us has not accidentally planted six zucchini plants—only to be buried in summer squash come August? Or, harvested a huge number of potatoes and later found them soft, growing something strange from their beady little eyes? In her new book, Homegrown Pantry: A Gardener’s Guide to Selecting the Best Varieties and Planting the…

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Book Review: Succulents

Succulents have been having a vogue for the past several years, as everything from bridal bouquets to interior walls have been covered with these water-wise, geometric plants. Succulents include all plants that have a fleshy appearance and conserve water, including such northern favorites as hens-and-chicks and sedum. But many of us think of succulents as…

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Gift Ideas: Garden Book Division

Yesterday, we listed some garden gift ideas from our November/December issue of Northern Gardener magazine. Today, I wanted to suggest some options you might consider for your favorite gardeners who enjoy a garden book from time to time. We’ve written a few times about my new book of garden wisdom, based on the files of…

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