The greening of the neighborhood is a miracle to me every year. I especially love it when pretty plantings yield edible prizes. Check out these books to inspire you to make everything from a living Zoom meeting background to the freshest salads around.
“Verdura: Living a Garden of Life” – I thought Wonder Bowl Garden would be my project.
Plant creeping, carpet-like plants in a wide bowl and place your treasures
inside. I’m thinking shells, coins and broken jewelry I find and cool rocks.
It’s a natural, textural display. Then I saw the baker’s rack kind of deal,
“Propagation Wall Station.” Display jars of cuttings and follow them as they
mature. Is a beautiful display that will ongoingly supply you with plants. Or,
fashion a standing candelabra into a planter. Upcycle a tire into a planter.
Hang a basket from a banana hook. Growing something is half the fun. Making it
look amazing is the rest. Perla Sofia Curbelo-Santiago of Agrochic.com gives us “Verdura: Living a Garden of Life: 30
Projects to Nurture Your Passion for Plants & Find Your Bliss.”
A Keeping Track Journal – Linda Vater created “The
Garden Journal: A 5-Year Record of Your Home Garden,” a beautiful hard-cover
book designed for daily notes on garden victories, hopes and chores. Some
garden diva you know needs this. Perhaps it is you. Maybe it’s that generous soul
who shares her zucchini. There’s space for contractors and services provided,
tips on forcing branches, etc. lovely illustrations and seasonal checklists.
Here’s what we can be doing now:
Plant dormant trees and shrubs
Feed the birds and keep birdbaths full
Prune dead branches and crossed limbs in trees
Look for topiaries and get supplies for seed starting
Enjoy fresh-cut bouquets of blooming bulbs
Sharpen and oil tools
· Clean out potting shed on a mild day
“The Complete Guide to Vegetable Gardening: Create, Cultivate, and Care for Your Perfect Edible Garden” - Of all the helpful advice in this one, I’m focusing on finding companions. As in friends of cabbage include bush beans, beets, celery, chamomile, dill, mint, onion, oregano, rosemary, sage and thyme. Plant them together and they help each other out. (Cabbage foes include pole beans, mustard, strawberry and tomato.) Photos help tell the story in an easy way for novices. This is from the editors of GardeningKnowHow.com, said to be the world’s most visited gardening resource.
"Growing an Edible Landscape" - I'd love to step into a
colorful yard full of bok choi, sage and walking onions. Eat your plants from a
salad, herb, tea or greens garden? Yes. Raised beds, containers, spirals and
keyholes can dot your space. Homeowners association keeping you in check? This
book offers ways to hide your edibles in plain sight, with more flowering
edibles. Sneaky huh? You rulebreaker, you. Gary Pilarchik of the Rusted Garden
and Chiara D'Amore of The Community Ecology Institute, say out with the lawn
and in with the food. Compost now, even before you plan.
Darragh Doiron is a Port Arthur area foodie whose ideal garden would be mainly edible, entirely colorful and seasonally aromatic. Share ideas with her at firstname.lastname@example.org