Book Reviews

Book Review: Vertical Vegetables

Vertical Vegetables: Simple Projects that Deliver More Yield in Less Space (Cool Springs Press, 2018) by Twin Cities-based garden blogger Amy Andrychowicz describes a variety of easy projects for gardeners who have limited space but want to grow lots of vegetables and flowers. Andrychowicz is the proprietor of GetBusyGardening.com, a very successful website for beginning…

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Grasses and Butterflies: A New E-Book Explains Connections

While many gardeners plant coneflowers, milkweed, black-eyed Susans and other blooming plants to help butterflies, ornamental grasses are also vital to the eco-system of these important creatures. A new, free e-book by Prof. Mary H. Meyer and Diane Narem describes the best ornamental grasses for cold climates AND which ones are most used by butterflies.…

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Book Review: Gardening Complete

This review by Julie Jensen originally appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of Northern Gardener. As you plod through the gardening off-season, you may wish for the chance to hear from a variety of gardening pros on ways to develop your horticultural repertoire. Taking a class is one option (and a good one). Another is…

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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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