Sunday, March 28, 2021

Texas Fruit Vegetable Gardening, 2nd Edition: Plant, grow, and harvest the best edibles for Texas gardens

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Texas Fruit Vegetable Gardening is the second edition of a classic gardening manual by Greg Grant. Originally published in 2012, this updated edition is due out 13th April 2021 from Quarto on their Cool Springs Press imprint. It's 240 pages and will be available in paperback and ebook formats. 

This is an eminently practical book. The author's down to earth writing style comes through on every page. Here's a quote:

“Gardening in Texas isn’t really that tough once you learn to play by the rules. It’s all about knowing what to grow and when to grow it.”

I liked the book's layout and graphic style. The chapters are arranged logically and information is easy to find quickly. The chapter on gardening basics (a surprisingly good general chapter containing information which is relevant to gardeners everywhere on siting, planning, preparing, planting, maintaining, harvesting, and troubleshooting) is followed by specific information for Texas gardeners regarding specific vegetables & herbs, fruits, and nuts (peanuts). The final chapter collates the information and adds tips and tricks for improving soil, adjusting pH, harvest storage, annual and perennial herbs, and a good plug for the ag extension services. 

The photography throughout is detailed, plentiful, and clear. The information is presented thoroughly and very accessibly. This is a very good book for gardeners in the whole of Texas split up by region and climate. 

I didn't have the first edition for comparison, so I can't review the differences, but this is a comprehensive and well written manual for Texas gardeners with broad general applications to gardeners in the entire Southeast USA. The author has also included an abbreviated glossary, short bibliography, seed/plant resource list, and a good cross-referenced index. One of the best features for me personally was the inclusion of a chapter with a number of the author's family recipes. These will be instantly recognizable to readers who have spent any amount of time in the Southeast USA. It's full of comfort food (including a recipe for Sunday dinner cornbread with cheddar, onion, corn kernels, and chopped bell peppers which I remember fondly from my own childhood). 

Five stars. Heartily recommended as a good acquisition for public or school library, home gardener, gardening groups, and schools. 

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

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