Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Best Books Ever On Organic Gardening & Composting (In My Opinion)

Below, I have added my list of  the best books ever on organic gardening and composting.  I have or have read these books and keep them handy as references when I am working on my organic garden or my herb garden.  Various topics covered by these books include companion planting, planting tips, crop rotation, composting methods and natural pest control for organic gardens.
  • Stephens, James M.  Vegetable Gardening in Florida, published 1999.  ISBN 13: 978-0-8130-1674-0.   This is a great book!  It is very simply laid out , very detailed (complete with pictures) and filled with planting tips and information on companion planting.  It has pictures and shows you what you need to know.  It doesn’t focus on organic gardening specifically, but it does talk about organic gardening and what kind of crops grow well in this climate.  I learned about this book from a co-worker who also gardens, and she gave me a copy as a gift.  I definitely use and refer to this guide a lot, for zone 9 gardening.
  • Martin, Deborah & Gershuny, Grace (editors)  The Rodale Book of Composting, published 1992.  ISBN 13: 978-0-8785-7990-7.  This is a definitely 'best book ever' on compost methods and troubleshooting for most areas.  There is some complaint about not enough information on composting methods for drier climates, but since I live in a sub-tropical climate, I find this book fits my needs.  This Rodale book was a really good investment and I have found my compost bins to be very fruitful, productive and beneficial to my vegetables due to using their composting techniques.
  • Martin, Deborah, Bradley, Fern, Ellis Barbara (authors)  The Organic Gardener’s Handbook of Natural Pest and Disease Control: A Complete Guide to Maintaining A Healthy Garden and Yard The Earth-Friendly Way (Rodale Organic Gardening Books),  published 2010.  ISBN 13: 978-0-8759-6124-8  This book is definitely my go-to resource for natural pest control for gardens and the recommendations and solutions are often very easy fixes, a lot of which can be made with normal household items or easy to obtain ones (like neem oil).  It also talks a lot about how to prep your garden to avoid pests before they start.  Another great Rodale book, and highly recommended.
  • Hamilton, Geoff  (author) The Organic Garden Book (American Horticultural Society Practical Guides), published 1994 ISBN 13: 978-1-5645-8528-8. I love this book.  It was one of the first ones I read about organic gardening and it is very helpful for beginning and experienced gardeners alike.  Another reference book for me, I keep it handy.  I like being able to use certain approved standards by which to work, along with tried-and-true methods that help me avoid costly mistakes.  It is my encyclopedia of organic gardening.
  • The Old Farmer’s Almanac 2012, copyright 2011 by Yankee Publishing Incorporated.  Library of Congress Card No. 56-29681 The Old Farmer's Alamanac was one of the first things I ever read about gardening and it still serves me well for planning and planting today.  It has never steered me wrong and I buy a new one each year and wear it out until it isdog-eared and raggedy.  It addresses companion planting and when to set seeds out, it also deals with natural pest control for organic gardens and serves as a companion to any organic gardening guide. 
So, there you have it.  These are my top 5 organic gardening books and if you have an opportunity, I would highly recommend picking them up and giving them a read.

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