fbpx skip to Main Content

New Books for Gardeners

So many gardening books, so little time!  But I’ve narrowed them down to just three among the 2013 releases that I really really want.


Planting: A New Perspective: by Piet Oudolf and Noel Kingsbury is at the top of my own gift list for Christmas because it’s THE hot book among garden designers and anyone who swoons over gorgeous plants arranged to perfection.  Oudolf famously designed the plantings for New York’s High Line.  (Photo-filled post here on the Behnkes Blog.)

Gardening in Miniature is how-to and inspiration for this hot gardening trend.  Just browsing it convinced me to give it a whirl.

And now that I’m a (super-beginner) bird-watcher, I’ve also asked for Gardening for the Birds: How to Create a Bird-Friendly back Yard.

Washington Post’s Picks


Barbara Damrosch posted her gardening book recommendations for the Washington Post, starting with Practical Botany for Gardeners: Over 3,000 Botanical Terms Explained and Explored

I’d dearly like to know more about botany and once (tried to) read another book supposedly just for us – Botany for Gardeners by Capon, which I found unreadable.   This newer version may be worth another attempt.

Seed-saving is an encouraging new trend, and Barbara recommends The Manual of Seed Saving: Harvesting, Storing, and Sowing Techniques for Vegetables, Herbs, and Fruits for people giving it a try.


Barbara’s column is called “The Cook’s Garden,” so growing edibles is the focus.  Not to mention that growing edibles is on the rise!  So for cook-gardeners, she likes……

1. The Homemade Pantry: 101 Foods You Can Stop Buying and Start Making

2. Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health

3. The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from around the World

and for all of us, Michael Pollan’s

4. Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation


For absolutely anyone, even if they don’t garden at all, I totally agree with Barbara’s recommendation of The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World’s Great Drinks by my blogging partner Amy Stewart. (Though Barbara sends readers to GardenRant to read Amy’s “witty” blog entries, Amy’s on sabbatical, so you may have to dig deep in our archives to find her juicier posts.  BUT, we have three new Rant partners posting regularly – on Wednesdays – so come check ’em out!)  And we were thrilled to see Drunken Botanist listed by the New York Times in its yearly round-up of Notable Nonfiction!


Finally, for yourself or any gardener, don’t forget a book I raved about earlier this year – The Layered Garden: Design Lessons for Year-Round Beauty from Brandywine Cottage. Oh, and another one about his hellebore talk at Behnkes!  He definitely qualifies as a Friend of Behnkes.

Posted by Susan Harris.

Stephanie Fleming was raised at Behnke’s Nurseries in Beltsville. Her Mom, Sonja, was one of Albert & Rose Behnke’s four children. She was weeding from the moment she could walk and hiding as soon as she was old enough to run, so many weeds, so little time. Although she quickly learned how to pull out a perennial and get taken off of weed pulling duty.

This Post Has 0 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back To Top