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An Urban Dweller's Guide to Growing Food and Raising Animals

by Lisa Taylor and The Gardeners of Seattle Tilth

Pub Date: March 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-1-57912-862-3
Publisher: Black Dog & Leventhal

Basic guide for first-time urban gardeners.

The local food movement is urging more people out of the grocery aisles and into their backyards, and Taylor’s just the person to shepherd them through the transition. The author, a longtime member and education director of the renowned urban-gardening organization Seattle Tilth, offers simple step-by-step instruction for planning, growing and caring for a garden. From small-container gardens to community plots to apiaries, Taylor distills her years of expertise into an accessible how-to format, complete with useful illustrations and charts. She includes readily replicable tests to determine soil type, and troubleshoots water issues and nutrient loads in the process. There are guidelines for composting, rain harvesting and tool buying. The author explains how to deal with good and bad insects, as well as other garden predators, providing eco-friendly solutions for a number of common garden conundrums. The book includes a list of easy-to-grow fruits and vegetables, supplemented with cultivation and harvesting tips that aren’t readily available on the back of a seed packet. Expert techniques can be found here as well, alongside tips for novices, and her straightforward writing style is suitable for all levels of gardener. Not a complete resource on its own, Taylor’s guide suggests a number of websites, organizations and other gardening books that will take beginners well into the next growing season.

Accessible, one-stop manual for fledgling green-thumbs.