Monday, May 16, 2016

Nonfiction Monday: The Nitty-Gritty gardening book: Fun projects for all seasons by Kari Cornell, photographs by Jennifer S. Larson

I'm looking at as many gardening books as possible, now that it looks like our long-awaited gardening project at the library is finally getting off the ground.

This is one that has been on my list for a while; I briefly skimmed it after borrowing it from another library. However, once I got a review copy I was able to really delve into the projects and ideas.

The book is divided into four seasons. The introduction covers not only gardening basics, like planning your space, testing your soil, and caring for plants, it also discusses the environmental importance of gardening. Spring projects include seed starting, a bean pole tent, and growing potatoes. Summer projects have instructions for various plantings, stations for birds, and creating a hanging garden. Fall projects include forcing bulbs, creating window boxes, and making an indoor compost bin. There are still gardening things to do in winter; create a terrarium, grow an avocado, or grow greens in a window.

There are lengthy resources including a glossary, resources, supplies, and index. The photographs include a diverse group of children and the simple drawings have both white and brown hands. While this book has a limited number of projects, it is very detailed, both in instructions and in explaining what is happening and why. The instructions are extremely detailed and, while the projects are primarily geared towards readers living somewhere with seasons, many of them are multi-purpose and can be adapted to different climates.

Verdict: This is an excellent resource for families or older kids wanting to try gardening but with no prior experience or knowledge. I think it will spark interest in trying new things and even learning more about the environment. Recommended.

ISBN: 9781467726474; Published 2015 by Millbrook/Lerner; Review copy provided by publisher; Donated to the library

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