The Q&A Archives: Refernce Books

Question: Please give me name, author, publisher etc of a great, user friendly gardening book for the first time gardener at home for parents to start with their children, ages 3-12 year olds.
Parents don't know where or how to begin a vegetable and herb garden.
From the ground, soil,lay out, correct planting, watering to pesticide (organic better). Small area to begin garden or pots. Is there such a refernce?? It is a big list to ask for. Thank you!!

Answer: Your question is a tall order as gardening is a diverse subject, but I'll suggest some great places to start you off on a lifelong quest for gardening education! The book "Perennial Garden Color" by William Welch (published by Taylor Publishing Co.; 1550 West Mockingbird Lane; Dallas, Texas 75235, and available through your local bookstore) is a great guide. "Southern Landscape Plants" by Neil Odenwald and James Turner (available from Claitor's Publishing Division; P.O.Box 261333; Baton Rouge, LA 70826-1333 (800)274-1403) is an indespensible reference on a wide variety of plant materials, geared to their landscape attributes. My all-time favorite reference book is "Sunset Western Garden Book" (Sunset Publishers, Menlo Park CA). It's written specifically for west coast gardeners and has an abundance of information about plants and about gardening in general. It's a must have for any gardener's library.

National Gardening Association Guide to Kids' Gardening, by Lynn Ocone and Eve Pranis, has background information and descriptions of successful children's programs. (Note, however, that most of the book gives hands-on, detailed information on how to successfully start a youth gardening program.) (148 pgs., list price $14.95)

NGA also publishes National Science Foundation-funded GrowLab materials, including a K-8 curriculum guide and a horticulture guide for teachers. And we publish a newsletter called Growing Ideas: A Journal of Garden-Based Learning that focuses on school gardening programs and inquiry learning. For further information on specific articles or other resources, contact the Education Department by e-mail at or phone at 800-538-7476.

Other programs that might be of interest to you include Food Works, 64 Main St., Montpelier, VT 05602, ph# 802-223-1515 and Life Lab Science Program, ph# 408-459-2001, web site:

Finally, you might check out the periodical Green Teacher, based in Toronto, Ontario; ph# 416-960-1244, web site:

I hope this is helpful!

« Click to go to the homepage

» Ask a question of your own

Q&A Library Searching Tips

  • When singular and plural spellings differ, as in peony and peonies, try both.
  • Search terms are not case sensitive.

Today's site banner is by ge1836 and is called "Sempervivum Henry Carrevon"