Monday, August 16, 2010

Nonfiction Monday: Ready, Set Grow! Quick and Easy Gardening Projects

At the beginning of the summer, I took a look at three gardening books for kids, including Wildlife Gardening, put together by DK Publishing. I've discovered another DK Publishing gardening book which is similar to Wildlife Gardening, but much better!

Ready Set Grow, while as crammed full of projects of WG, has a much more readable design and a good logical progression of projects. It begins with a table of contents which lists the time needed for each project next to the title and also includes a brief note on the American Horticultural Society and their contact information.

The book begins with a general introduction to gardening; looking at the space you have available, buying healthy plants, and knowing what will grow in your space. The first projects show a colorful timeline of how seeds sprout and includes instructions for making a simple seed propagator. This project is followed by tips on "green" gardening and how to water and mulch, along with instructions on building a self-irrigation system. The book moves on into making fun containers, garden decorations, and stepping stones.

The second section starts with a calendar for organizing the following growing projects and a list of quick-to-grow plants. The following growing projects are all flowers - lots of simple and fun ideas here! The third section covers vegetables, herbs, and fruit and also starts with a calendar. The projects start out simple and quick, and get more complex and time-intensive until you come to the Pizza Garden.

The book finishes with instructions on collecting and storing seeds, a glossary, and index. My only quibble is the egregious suggestion of decoracting your cacti garden with plastic figures of cowboys and Indians - I'm pretty sure this comes from a British consciousness, since many of the projects have that flavor - do currants even grow over here?

Verdict: A colorful and fun gardening book

ISBN: 978-0756658878; Published February 2010 by DK; Borrowed from the library; Purchased for the library

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