Recent Gardening picks for May

Recent Picks for May include an array of practical books full of advice and inspiration. To start the selection we have a sumptious book on the gardening heritage of Marrakesh and to finish the story about how gardening in wartime Britain was part of the fight for freedom…

Syndetics book coverGardens of Marrakesh / Angelica Gray ; photography by Alessio Mei.
‘Gardens of Marrakesh’ champions the city’s relevance today in a world of water scarcity and urban development and explores its green heritage, considering some twenty gardens both from an historic and cultural perspective.” (Syndetics Summary)  

Syndetics book coverGarden rescue : first aid for plants and flowers / Jo Whittingham.
“If you need to know how to prevent everyday troubles from turning into gardening disasters, Garden Rescue will save the day. This “first aid manual” for your garden will help you identify, understand, and tackle a wide range of common problems, from poor fruit harvests and unruly trees and shrubs to preventing pests and diseases. You’ll learn what’s normal and what’s not, how to spot early warning signs of distress, and preventative measures to keep your plants healthy. Whether your wisteria is wilting or your fatsia isn’t flowering, Garden Rescue has hundreds of practical solutions so you can be your own garden medic.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverGardening in a changing climate : inspirational and practical ideas for creating sustainable, waterwise and dry gardens with projects, garden plans and more than 400 photographs / Ambra Edwards ; with special photography by Lynn Keddie.
“The approach of this new book is the garden styles of nine regions which have always dealt superbly with heat, drought and water shortage: the Italian Garden, the Islamic Garden, the Patio Garden, the Mediterranean Garden, the Gravel Garden, the Desert Garden, the Bush Garden, the Flowering Desert and the Jungle Garden. Each chapter explains the essence of the style, and its historical roots, including a practical tutorial, a plant focus profiling characteristic plant forms, a colour planting plan and a step-by-step project. This is a critical read for any gardener, offering a practical and inspirational insight into the classic gardens defined by sunshine, humidity and lack of water that will inform the gardens of tomorrow.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverGrow your own plants / [Alan Titchmarsh].
“In this definitive guide, Alan Titchmarsh shows how simple it is to propagate plants by following a few basic techniques. Learn how to produce a flourishing garden filled with ornamental and edible plants, at very little expense. With a  demystified, down-to-earth approach to propagation  and easy-to-follow instructions and step-by-step diagrams this book offers key tips on taking cuttings, sowing seed, layering and division and guidance on promoting growth of young plants.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverGifts from the garden : 100 gorgeous homegrown presents / Debora Robertson ; photography by Yuki Sugiura.
“Brimming with ideas from the pretty to the practical, “Gifts from the Garden” contains more than 100 projects that use the gardener’s bounty throughout the seasons.  If you want to give something practical for the home, indulgent to enjoy at bathtime, or to complement a delicious dinner, there is a present that will suit everyone.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverFruit trees in small spaces : abundant harvests from your own backyard / Colby Eierman ; with photos by Erin Kunkel ; and recipes by Mike Emanuel.
“For gardeners yearning for the pleasures of home-grown fruit plucked straight from the tree, this deliciously encouraging guide cuts the subject down to size. Colby Eierman, garden designer and fruit expert, shows how trees can easily be tucked into the tiniest spots and still yield a bumper crop of gorgeous fruit. Fruit Trees in Small Spaces covers everything a gardener needs to know about choosing and nurturing the most delicious small-space varieties, including selection, pruning, training, irrigation, and disease prevention. With inspiring ideas for spaces of all shapes and sizes and creative recipes for your incredible harvest, you’ll want to plant a mini-orchard in every intimate corner. For the gardener with space limitations, bountiful fruit trees are now within arm’s reach.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverThe holistic orchard : tree fruits and berries the biological way / Michael Phillips.The Holistic Orchard: Tree Fruits and Berries the Biological Way
“Growing tree fruits and berries is something virtually anyone with space and passionate desire can do – given wise guidance and a personal commitment to observe the teachings of the trees. The Holistic Orcharddemystifies the basic skills everybody should know about the inner-workings of the orchard ecosystem, as well as orchard design, soil biology, and organic health management. Detailed insights on grafting, planting, pruning, and choosing the right varieties for your climate are also included, along with a step-by-step instructional calendar to guide growers through the entire orchard year.Exciting times lie ahead for those who now have every reason in the world to confidently plant that very first fruit tree!”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverChristine Walkden’s no-nonsense container gardening : the secret of growing vegetables, herbs, fruit and flowers in small spaces / [Christine Walkden].
“Using containers or pots as a base for your gardening is so versatile—try making an eye-catching design feature by growing herbs in a zinc bucket, growing spring bulbs in a pretty olive oil can on your patio, or growing a complete salad in some old tyres. Growing your own containers is both rewarding and fun. This book is packed with Christine’s tips and techniques, from planting to deter pests to choosing the right container for the right crop, along with handy advice on feeding and watering, knowing when to harvest, and treating common diseases. All the projects included are perfect for beginners and provide inspiration for the more experienced gardener; there are even ideas to turn little fingers green.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverDrink your own garden : a homebrew guide using your garden ingredients / Judith Glover.
“Drink Your Own Garden has recipes for berry and bush wines, flower wines, fruit and vegetable wines, grain and herb wines, leaf and sap wines, meads and beers, as well as non-alcoholic fruit juices, cordials and teas. This guide provides a detailed recipe and method for each drink, plus a list of potential problems and remedies, with guidelines for each step of the process, including equipment and ingredients and a seasonal guide to what to harvest when. Make the most of the plentiful ingredients in your garden and enjoy a glass of refreshing home brew.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverA green and pleasant land : how England’s gardeners fought the Second World War / Ursula Buchan.
“Ursula Buchan tells the intriguing and inspiring story of how the British government encouraged and cajoled its citizens to contribute to the war effort by growing their own fruit and vegetables. As a whole nation listened to wireless broadcasts, dug holes for Anderson shelters, counted their coupons and made do and mended, so too were they instructed to #145;Dig for Victory#146;. Ordinary people, as well as gardening experts, rose to the challenge: gardens, scrubland, allotments and even public parks were soon helping to feed a nation deprived of fresh produce. British people tackled wartime gardening and its practical contribution to the Home Front with thrifty ingenuity, grumbling humour and extraordinary fortitude. However, this simple act of turning over soil and tending new plants was potentially just as important in mitigating the psychological and physical shocks endured by a population under threat of bombing and even invasion. Gardening reminded Britons that their country, and its more innocent and insular pursuits, were worth fighting for. Gardening in wartime Britain was a part of the fight for freedom.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)