Monday, March 12, 2018

Beginner's Garden

Beginner's Garden is an introductory guide for new gardeners.  Author Alex Mitchell has teamed up with Fox Chapel Publishing to produce an upbeat and encouraging guide for the less experienced gardener.

Especially slanted toward urban and suburban gardening, there's a lot of emphasis on easily grown crops which are suited to containers.  The most common crops get their own listings with cultural info and are ranked with regard to difficulty with 1-4 trowels (1 is 'You couldn't kill it if you tried' :)  The entire book is filled with full color photographs of everything including growing spaces, plants, bugs and food. 

The book is split up into logical sections which start with an easily digested introduction and getting started sidebar.  The introduction includes a short discussion of tools and supplies (which are few and easily acquired). The next chapters detail seasonal jobs and crops starting with spring and moving through the year to winter. There's an interlude chapter in the middle of the year which talks about entertaining and includes recipes which showcase the production from the gardener's efforts.  I loved the inclusion of recipe themed containers: 'Salsa in a box', 'Patio Friendly Greek salad', 'Ratatouille riot', etc. 

The end of the book has a short chapter on parasites and 'garden villains' and some info about how to identify and deal with unwanted critters in the garden.  There are also reference and glossary sections which cover the basics. The index and resources sections finish up the book and include useful links for further reading.

Four stars, encouraging and supportive help for new gardeners with some interesting takes on common problems and recipes for the more advanced gardener.  Very chatty and informal.

160 pages softbound, expected publication date: 12th March, 2018

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher.

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