Most gardeners, and I include myself in that category, love books. There are countless books about gardens and gardening and more are published every year so if you want to buy a book as a gift for a gardener friend where would you start? I found a helpful article by Linda Moran from the Master Gardeners website which has a great list of suggested titles. Linda has separate lists covering garden history, garden design, literary and coffee table size.
For your gardening friends or for yourself, consider choosing gardening books from the vast array available as Christmas gifts. Area bookstores, art museums, and gift shops all feature a wide selection of the more usual and recently published books.? Many of their used copies are in excellent condition. Best of all, when time permits, is to browse in the gardening section of a used bookstore. Wonder Book is a good local source and most towns have at least one. I recently found Gertrude Jekyll’s Wood and Garden and The Once and Future Gardener, Garden Writing from the Golden Age of Magazines, 1900-1910. Both were in excellent condition and inexpensive with surprisingly up to date gardening information. Color plates of the magazine covers were creative and bright.
Some of my favorites that I return to often for advice or for just pure pleasure are listed in categories and represent a very minimal sampling of the vast library of books related to gardening. Books related to more specific subjects such as native plants, peonies, hellebores, etc. may be a subject for a future column.
- The New Traditional Garden, A Practical guide to Creating and Restoring American Gardens for Homes of All Ages by Michael Weishan. Includes great illustrations.
- Treasury of Garden Writing selected by Charles Elliott. Selections from15th – 20th century writers with beautiful botanicals.
- Men and Gardens by Nan Fainbrother. A delightful tour through old gardens.
- Jefferson’s Gardens by Peter Loewer.
- The American Gardener, A Sample edited by Allen Lacy.