Best Landscaping Books – Backyard Gardening Books For Better Design

By: Mary Ellen Ellis

Landscape design is a professional career for a reason. It’s not easy to put together a design that is both practical and aesthetically pleasing. The backyard gardener can learn to create better designs by learning through landscaping books, though. Here are some of the best to get started with.

Benefitting from Backyard Gardening Books

Some people have a natural ability to design spaces and grow plants. For the rest of us, there are books to serve as guides. Even if you have a natural talent, you can always learn more from the experts.

Choose books that expand your basic knowledge of gardening and landscape design and also those that are specific to your interests, area, and type of garden. For instance, if you live in the Midwest, a book about tropical gardens may be interesting but not much help. Regardless of the setting, any book on the fundamentals of design will be useful.

In addition to the books listed below, find any written by local or regional gardeners and designers. If there is someone from your area who has written on landscape design, it can be a real help for your own planning.

Best Books on Landscaping

Books for creating outdoor spaces should be practical but also inspiring. Find the right balance to help you design your own garden. Here are just a few to pique your interest.

  • Step by Step Landscaping. This book from Better Homes and Gardens has been published in numerous updated editions because of its popularity. Get the latest one to learn the basics of landscaping and DIY projects that are easy to follow.
  • Edible Landscaping. Written by Rosalind Creasy, this is a great book to get you started on designing a yard that is beautiful and also practical.
  • Home Ground: Sanctuary in the City. Dan Pearson wrote this book about his experiences designing a garden in an urban setting. You’ll need it if you are fitting a garden into a cramped city space.
  • Lawn Gone. If you’re interested in diving into lawn alternatives but don’t know where to start, pick up this book by Pam Penick. Getting rid of the traditional lawn is intimidating, but this book breaks it down for you and will give you design ideas. It includes advice and ideas for all regions in the U.S.
  • Taylor’s Master Guide to Landscaping. This Taylor’s Guides book by Rita Buchanan is great for anyone new to the concept of landscape design. The guide is comprehensive and detailed and includes things like outdoor living rooms, walkways, hedges, walls, and plant types.
  • Big Impact Landscaping. Sara Bendrick’s DIY book is full of great ideas and step-by-step projects. The focus is on products that have a major impact on the space but don’t cost too much.

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The 7 Best Gardening Books of 2021

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products you can learn more about our review process here . We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

"This gardening book. covers topics like soil, compost, seeds, pest control and weeds, using easy-to-understand language that won’t confuse novices."

"Can teach you everything you need to know to grow beautiful veggies, from basics like tomatoes and carrots to more unusual varieties of produce."

"Contains a wealth of expert advice, addressing everything from how to pick the best growing site to tips on maximizing the lifespan of your plants."

"The top-rated gardening guide. will teach you how to create an amazing garden in just a few square feet."

"Includes personality profiles, growing needs, and troubleshooting tips for 160 common indoor plants, from ivy to bonsai trees."

Best for Vertical Gardening: Vertical Gardening at Amazon

"Delves into vertical growing strategies using string supports, trellises, pergolas, raised beds, skyscraper gardens and more."

"This kid-friendly gardening book will help you teach your children the basics of plants while providing innovative ideas for fun outdoor projects."

The Proven Winners Garden Book - buy now from Proven Winners

Expert plant knowledge and creative design ideas from America’s #1 plant brand. The Proven Winners Garden Book contains simple garden plans to add curb appeal to your home, including a welcoming entryway, pollinator garden, flower garden, shady summertime retreat and deer-resistant garden. Not sure what plants work together in a container? You’ll also get 25 recipes to add color to your patio, porch or balcony. The authors also share lessons on garden prep, design choices, and how to buy the right plants.

Our Top Picks

The best gardening books are those that give the reader actionable information. These books provide helpful answers to common questions, offer inspiration for future projects, and point to additional resources for even greater detail.

Best Overall

Rodale’s Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening

Rodale’s Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening is an excellent resource for both new gardeners and experienced green thumbs. With hundreds of entries, from “Acer” to “Zinnia,” the book is organized in a classic encyclopedic format, alphabetically by subject. This book includes descriptions and care instructions for a variety of ornamental annuals and perennials, vegetables, herbs, trees, and shrubs. It offers instructions for dealing with pests, recommendations for garden planning and plant combinations, explanations of propagation and composting techniques, and much more. Recommendations and solutions follow an organic approach to gardening. It also includes a glossary of horticultural terms, additional resources, and a recommended reading list.

Best For Beginners

Vegetable Gardening For Dummies

Vegetable Gardening For Dummies meets novice gardeners where they most need it most: in the vegetable garden. It’s a quick, easy read packed with the basic information a new gardener needs to know. Topics include gardening tools, layout of a garden bed, soil improvement, and specific growing information for the most popular garden veggies. The text is written in an approachable, engaging manner. The book’s organization leads the reader through the planning process, planting and care during the growing season, harvest and storage techniques, and season extension methods.

Best For Vegetable Gardens

The Old Farmer’s Almanac Vegetable Gardener Handbook

The Old Farmer’s Almanac Vegetable Gardener’s Handbook is a specialized veggie gardener resource for both new and experienced gardeners. This book includes garden planning, start-up, maintenance, and harvest information to grow an abundant backyard (or balcony) garden. It also presents specific background and production information for more than 30 different crops. Tips on soil testing, disease and pest management, seed saving, composting, and many other vegetable gardening skills can help even the most experienced growers improve production in their gardens.

Best For Flower Gardens

Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden

Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden was written by a florist-farmer. She takes the reader through the stages of planning, starting, caring for, harvesting, and storing cut flowers. The author dedicates the first part of the book to planning and general production techniques. The second part is arranged according to the seasons. This includes segments dedicated to seasonal flower gardening tasks, the plants that bloom at specific times of the year, and floral projects.

Best For Indoor Plants

New Plant Parent: Develop Your Green Thumb

The New Plant Parent introduces gardeners to a “plant parenthood mentality” that sets the stage for successful indoor gardening. New plant parents get information they need to understand the visual appeal of well-displayed, healthy plants and gain the satisfaction of learning and practicing competent plant care techniques. The book includes detailed advice on providing a healthy indoor growing environment, dealing with pests, and acquiring houseplants. It also includes detailed growing information for 20 different kinds of houseplants.

Vertical Gardening Pick

Vertical Gardening: Grow Up, Not Out

Vertical Gardening is for gardeners who are challenged by a lack of gardening space or who wish to enjoy gardening without as much bending and stooping. The book leads the reader through site and soil preparation before providing detailed instructions in various techniques, including arbors and trellises, planters and supports, hanging planters, and more. It details solutions to the challenges associated with vertical gardens, including plant selection, composting, pests and diseases, and seed starting, among others. It also provides helpful suggestions for incorporating annual, perennial, woody, and ornamental vines into gardenscapes.

Organic Gardening Pick

Rodale’s Basic Organic Gardening

Rodale’s Basic Organic Gardening is a great resource for beginners or experienced gardeners who might be new to organic growing. The book is laid out in a logical progression that helps gardeners stay confident as they work through the book. The first two chapters familiarize readers with the concept of organic gardening and provide a strategy for getting started. The book then dives deeper into plant selection, garden care, soil health, and caring for starter plants. The helpful resource wraps up with discussions about troubleshooting and seasonal considerations in an organic gardening system.

Gardening Books Serve As Useful Guides

And plants and planting. As soon as I began reading I sensed the authors Elizabeth Millard passion for growing and cooking healthily which plugged me in to wanting to read more.

Reconnecting Kids To Nature The Benefits Of School Gardens School Garden School Garden Club Gardening For Kids

Best gardening books The Cut Flower Patch A great choice for anyone who loves to fill their home with cut flowers this is full of practical help on how to grow over 100 flowering plants from early spring right through to late autumn.

Gardening Books Serve As Useful Guides. The importance of fertilizer 16 31 Organic fertilizer 16 32Compost 18 33 How to make compost 19 4. The ultimate guide to greenhouse plantingthe ideal place to propagate seedlings nurture young plants experiment with exotic planting and hide from the rain. This is a brief overview of top 10 permaculture books as voted for by Permaculture Association Diploma in Applied Permaculture Design apprentices.

A journal is really about the big picture so jot down your dreams for the garden or inspiration says Sullivan. The Self-Sufficient Life and How to Live It at Amazon Through a British lens this book covers the basics of homesteading and small farming for urbanites new to rural living. The benefit of learning how to design.

The indoor kitchen gardening book is the best I have reviewed in terms of growing what you can eat within your kitchen and home. Color in the garden. 60 Design Ideas for Perfect Landscaping.

The Ultimated Guide to Build and Plant Your Outdoor Space. 22 What you need to build a vegetable garden 10 23 Tools and basic equipment 11 24Seeds 13 25 Good soil 14 3. Its a great way to keep track of garden activity.

A plot this size based on the easy vege-. I found so many useful ideas that I bought the book to highlight suggestions for framing my garden area creating focal areas adding artful accents and more. 4 FREE SAMPLE GARDEN PLANS Heres a tip.

Indoor Kitchen Gardening Format. Step-by-step guide to making a vegetable garden 22 41 How to make a vegetable garden 22 42 Making a grow box 23. A good-size beginner vegetable garden is about 16×10 feet.

It goes into good detail about how to get started but lacks in troubleshooting. If you agree or disagree with any of the choices or if the information here has been helpful in choosing your first or next. Plant Care Guides Weve chosen the most popular plants and provided the essential information you need for choosing planting and maintaining them.

If this seems interesting to you then Aquaponics The Essential Guide by Andy Jacobson is the book you are looking for. Aquaponic gardening allows you to grow plants in water that fish live in they feed off of each other. Walls patios walks and steps.

How to Garden Greenhouse Gardening Author. Click on a link or image to view the complete guide. From beginners guides to in-depth manuals.

The book is divided into five sections. The greenhouse is one of the most useful tools a gardener can have and this book provides all the information and. But which one to choose and why so.

Learn more about what has gone into these guides and this website by clicking here. Guides For Growing and Maintaining Yard Garden Select a topic below for valuable resources which will assist in making your yard or garden successful this year. You can also use it to keep notes about the interesting plants you come across elsewhere so you can make a reminder to include them in your garden next year.

This classic book covers many aspects of basic farm life including gardening food preparation and buying land Runner-Up Best for Learning the Basics. Many Containers and Borders Plants Ideas Included.

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16 great books for gardening and indoor plant inspiration

Make the most of your outdoor space and maintain plants inside.

Whether you want to transform your outdoor space or keep your indoor plants thriving, these gardening books and houseplant guides should help you along on the way,

Get inspired to turn your garden into a thriving utopia full of plants and vegetables, plus design your outdoor space with practical landscaping ideas thanks to great advice from experts, including The National Trust, the Royal Horticultural Society and Monty Don and Adam Frost from Gardeners' World. You can also find specific books on wildlife, no dig, container gardening, vegetables, and more.

And, for those keen on indoor gardening, find everything you need to know about houseplant varieties, cut flowers, and how plants can benefit your wellbeing.

Adam Frost's practical, no-nonsense approach will help you plan and build a garden that works for you. The Gardeners' World presenter takes you step by step through the whole process, from simple garden design ideas to a full garden makeover.

Isabelle Palmer shows you how to make the most of every little space with a series of projects for small gardens, singular containers and window boxes, that can be completed in a day or weekend. Perfect for novice gardeners, Modern Container Gardening offers beautiful photography and clear step-by-step instructions.

The National Trust employs over 500 gardeners with an extraordinary wealth of expertise. And now, in this in-depth guide, they pass on their wisdom and provide the answers any new and seasoned gardener is looking for. This book is intended to give you inspiration and confidence to make the most of your garden, without being overwhelmed with unnecessary technical detail.

Veg In One Bed explains how to build your bed and grow from seed, as well advice on planting, feeding, and harvesting. YouTube gardening star Huw Richards shows how to guarantee early success by starting off young plants on a windowsill and suggests what to grow in each part of the bed.

Monty Don offers straightforward gardening advice in this book, revealing the secrets of growing vegetables, fruits, flowers, and herbs, while respecting the needs of the environment by gardening organically. You can also enjoy a tour of his Herefordshire garden, including his flower garden, herb garden, kitchen garden, and more.

The Practical House Plant Book by the RHS contains a dozen step-by-step projects to help you assemble an eye-catching terrarium, create a floating kokedama 'string garden', or propagate succulents. Complete with 175 in-depth plant profiles, this is an essential practical guide for indoor gardeners.

A small garden space – an urban patio, a tiny backyard, or even just a pot by your door – doesn't have to sacrifice style. In Small Garden Style, garden designer Isa Hendry Eaton and lifestyle writer Jennifer Blaise Kramer show you how to use good design to create a joyful, elegant, and exciting yet compact outdoor living space.

Charles Dowding, innovator of no dig, teaches you everything you need to know about this method of organic gardening. With 19 chapters, you'll learn how to use no dig on different soil types, recognise and massively reduce the different types of weeds, know the difference between soil and types of compost, and grow an abundance of vegetables using the no dig method.

Get all the inspiration you need for planting cut flowers, and fill your home with colour and the gorgeous scent of the garden year-round with In Bloom. Clare Nolan reveals her secrets for growing a bountiful harvest as well as styling spectacular homegrown displays in this beautifully designed book.

The RHS' Complete Gardener's Manual will help you choose plants that will thrive in your space, design a border for year-round colour, grasp different pruning techniques, discover how to protect your veg patch from pests, and make the best compost.

Do you want to attract more bees, birds, frogs and hedgehogs into your garden? In Wildlife Gardening for Everyone and Everything, Kate Bradbury teams up with the Wildlife Trusts and the RHS to help you discover how you can make your garden, balcony, doorstep or patio a haven for garden wildlife. You'll find handy charts, practical projects and fact files.

Gardener and TV presenter David Domoney is a firm believer that indoor plants can make 'a practical and emotional contribution to our wellbeing'. In this book, David explains the hard science behind the positive effect of the humble houseplant on wellness, and provides expert tips on how to keep your plants thriving, plus shares his top 50 life-enhancing houseplants.

If you're looking for new garden ideas, the RHS Encyclopedia of Garden Design will guide you from planning to planting, such as choosing the correct materials for your structures and assessing your drainage, to laying patios, making ponds, and planting perennials.

This planet-friendly book is filled with ideas for creating your own eco garden on any scale, from a small courtyard to a large garden or allotment. Discover organic techniques that improve biodiversity, learn the value of using recycled and reclaimed materials for landscaping, and take on simple projects such as making a pond and a wildlife hotel.

Drawing on expert advice from the RHS, this best-selling reference book – organised by colour, size, and type, rather than as an A-Z directory – will help you select the right varieties for your outdoor space.

Joyce and Ben Russell have devised 30 kitchen garden projects, devised to either extend the season, protect crops from pests or improve yields. These projects transform your vegetable plot into somewhere more productive, more attractive and more secure.

Watch the video: English country garden style - what it is and how to achieve it in your garden

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