News Blog > gardening

Recent Home, Garden & DIY picks.

It’s all about creativity and style. This month’s pick features vertical garden, best soil, and personalised design for your garden, as well as decoration and desserts for your party!

Syndetics book coverDomino : your guide to a stylish home : discovering your personal style and creating a space you love / by Domino editors, Jessica Romm Perez, Shani Silver.
“From the editors of domino magazine comes the essential guide to discovering your personal style at home. Domino: Your Guide to a Stylish Home will help readers to: Identify your personal decorating style. Find inspiration from hundreds of beautiful, inspiring photos of real homes. Style the major and minor components of your home, from textiles to table settings to art. Shop for quality pieces that will stand the test of time. Learn from domino editors and tastemakers about how to style magazine-quality looks at home…” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe good dirt / Xanthe White.
“As the title suggests, this book is all about the soil we find in our garden and more particularly how we can maximize its growing potential. If you’ve ever wondered why some plants thrive in one location but struggle in your own backyard you’ll be likely to find explanations in the soil below. Xanthe White examines the five main soil types found in New Zealand and offers advice on how to get the best from each one by working in harmony with nature. Complete with ingredients guides for each soil type and ideas and design features to enhance its fertility, this is an essential companion for anyone looking to establish a new garden or improve their existing one.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverGood Housekeeping simple household wisdom : 425 easy ways to clean & organize your home / edited by Sara Lyle Bow.
“Your home is the place where you’re free to relax, entertain, and express your personality. Filled with fabulous photographs of every room, plus genius tips, savvy shortcuts, and quick fixes for tidying, decluttering, organizing, adding style, and more, Good Housekeeping Simple Household Wisdom is your go-to guide for turning a house into the home you’ll love even more.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverModern potluck : beautiful food to share / Kristin Donnelly.
Modern Potluck is a cookbook and guide for today’s potluckers that delivers Instagram-worthy dishes packed with exciting, bold flavors. These 100 make-ahead recipes are perfect for a crowd and navigate carnivore, gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, and vegan preferences gracefully. With beautiful color photographs and lots of practical information such as how to pack foods to travel, Modern Potluck is the ultimate book for gathering friends and family around an abundant, delicious meal.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverVertical gardens / Leigh Clapp & Hattie Klotz.
“Vertical gardening is a fun, creative way to grow plants in urban spaces. As long as you’ve got a blank wall or bare fence that needs beautifying, you can tend edibles, annuals, even perennials with vertical garden products. Vertical gardens will turn your bare spaces into gorgeous living walls indoors and out.” (Back cover)

Syndetics book coverSimple tailoring & alterations : hems, waistbands, seams, sleeves, pockets, cuffs, darts, tucks, fastenings, necklines, linings / J. François-Campbell.
“Revamp your wardrobe with advice from acclaimed costumer and expert tailor J. Francois-Campbell in this comprehensive guide to maintaining and altering men’s and women’s clothing. Simple Tailoring & Alterations offers concise instructions covering all tailoring and alteration techniques from replacing buttons to changing a garment’s shape for a better fit. Guided by easy to follow instructions, you will enjoy projects on skirts, dresses, pants, jackets, shirts, coats, sweaters, vests, ties, and more.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWell played : the ultimate guide to awakening your family’s playful spirit / Meredith Sinclair.
“From Today Show contributor, Meredith Sinclair, comes this ultimate resource for awakening your playful spirit, jumpstarting your relationships, and upping your happiness quotient. In our age of digital addiction, many of us have lost our ability to be spontaneous. More parents are complaining that they no longer even remember how to play…with their children, their spouse, and even with their own friends. Don’t fret! In Well Played, expert Meredith Sinclair helps families relearn what used to come naturally and shows how to find happiness through play. (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverElbows off the table, please : recipes to make any occasion special / Jo Seagar ; photography by Jae Frew.
“Delicious, effortless recipes along with wise advice on how to navigate any social occasion. A home-cooked meal or gift of baking is still one of the best ways to show your appreciation. …Jo Seagar shares her favourite dishes for simple gatherings, special celebrations and those times when a home-made offering saves the day. Accompanied by useful tips to help you be a generous host and gracious guest, this is an indispensable kitchen-to-table companion.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe finer things : timeless furniture, textiles, and details / Christiane Lemieux ; foreword by Miles Redd.
“Quality matters. Just as a home’s foundation should be built to stand the test of time, so, too, should the furniture, objects, and elements of our rooms speak to an enduring sense of beauty and comfort. They should outlast trends and our loving day-to-day use. …Weaving together the insights and guidance of dozens of wallpaper and paint specialists, textile fabricators, accessories artisans, and interior designers, Lemieux has curated an unparalleled education in recognizing the hallmarks of timeless, heirloom-quality pieces.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDecorate for a party : stylish and simple ideas for meaningful gatherings / Holly Becker + Leslie Shewring.
Decorate for a Party is a stunning sourcebook packed with decorating tips and techniques that will ignite your creativity. Whether you are planning a significant celebration or a simple dinner with friends, this book delivers creative ideas for every occasion.” (Amazon.co.uk)

Christmas gifts & meals – Home & Garden November Newsletter

Welcome! We have a selection of new library books featuring fabulous ideas on making Christmas cards and gifts, easy and healthy meals, as well as exploring gardening projects that can be fun. Read about ways to address children’s health problems by both medical and natural methods, and challenge preconceived ideas about meditation. Enjoy!

Cooking

This collection of cookbooks will inspire you to create wholesome, healthy meals easily and without stress.

Syndetics book cover Salads in a Jar / Courtney Roulston.
“In our busy lives, we are always looking for nutritious, delicious, satisfying meals that are fast and simple to prepare. Salads in a Jar will show you how you can take it to another level, layering jars with salads to create lunches or breakfasts on the go….the salads are portable, the packaging is environmentally friendly and the recipes are delicious. Because the salads can last for several days in the fridge, you can always have yummy breakfasts and lunches ready to go.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover From Venice to Istanbul / Rick Stein.
“From the mythical heart of Greece to the fruits of the Black Sea coast; from Croatian and Albanian flavors to the spices and aromas of Turkey and beyond–the cuisine of the Eastern Mediterranean is a vibrant melting pot brimming with character. This book includes more than 100 spectacular recipes discovered by Rick during his travels. this collection of inspiring recipes evokes the magic of the Eastern Mediterranean at home.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Janella’s Super Natural Foods / Janella Purcell.
“With more than 150 fantastic recipes for healthy and delicious meals, desserts, snacks, drinks, and dressings,…Janella’s philosophy of using “food as medicine” is simple and easy to follow. Many of the recipes have been influenced by Janella’s travels to Italy, Japan, India, the Middle East, and South East Asia. Clearly marked with relevant codes–gluten free, vegan, vegetarian, dairy free, raw, soy free, nut free, or grain free–each recipe also contains a few alternative ingredient suggestions to please all of the friends and family seated around your table. ” (Syndetics summary)
Overdrive cover 天天吃海魚, 陳紀臨 (eBook)
“每菜一魚,標有其特徵、別名和烹調方法,還兼附魚相片,方便確認。作者是飲食世家出身,博學多聞,游走四方,全書挑選40多道魚菜,深入考究每種魚的資料,運用不同的烹調技巧,突顯菜式。篇末還附加海魚概說,增加閱讀興趣和常識。” (Overdrive description)

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Craft

There’s nothing more satisfying than making Christmas cards and gifts for your family and friends and you will find lots of new library books, packed with magical ideas and inspiration to help you make this season special.

Syndetics book cover Half yard Christmas : easy sewing projects using left-over pieces of fabric / Debbie Shore.
“Are you craving a crafty, creative Christmas? Let Debbie Shore show you how to create all the accessories you’ll need in the latest addition to her best-selling Half Yard series. Featuring six themed chapters – rustic, traditional, contemporary, monochrome, Scandinavian and kids – there’s something for everyone: you can select your favourite Christmas style or mix and match throughout your home. With over 30 simple, stylish projects requiring only half yards of fabric, this book will have you feeling festive in no time.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover The artful year : celebrating the seasons and holidays with family arts and crafts / Jean Van’t Hul.
“Celebrating the seasons and holidays is a wonderful opportunity to embrace creativity together as a family. It’s also a fun way to decorate, prepare for, and learn about the holidays we celebrate. In The Artful Year, you’ll find art activites, crafts, recipes, and more to help make each season special. By doing so, your family will create memories and mementos, you’ll develop creative growth in your children and yourself, and you’ll have lots of fun!” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Sew many dresses, sew little time : the ultimate dressmaking guide : interchangeable patterns to create 200+ unique dresses / Tanya Whelan.
“Tanya Whelan believes that dressmaking is easier than most people realize but that most sewing books are more complicated than they need to be. With her “choose-your-own-adventure” approach to sewing, Tanya offers an invaluable collection of patterns that empowers sewers to become designers. The trick is a set of patterns for 6 skirts and 8 bodices that line up perfectly at the waist, plus an additional 4 sleeve styles and 4 necklines. Tanya Whelan gives readers clear instructions and easy-to-follow step-by-step diagrams that allow them to use the enclosed pattern pieces to create up to 219 fitted dresses, including simple strapless designs, sheaths, and halter gowns. The book covers basic dress construction and altering techniques for women of all shapes and sizes.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Sew fab : sewing and style for young fashionistas / Lesley Ware.
Sew Fab is a style and sewing workbook for any girl aged 8-13 who loves fashion. It will teach you not just to sew, but how to wear your creations with flair. Start by finding your style tribe, learning to accessorize, identifying the best colors for you, and more. Now get ready to sew. Make yourself a mini studio, stock your sewing basket, and try out some hand stitching. There’s a mix of easy step-by-step projects to sew by hand or using simple machining, from a hair bow to a little black dress (but in the color that suits you best!). Packed with gorgeous illustrations, step-by-step projects, tips, and fun activities, you will be creating unique clothes and accessories in no time.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Handmade interiors / project editor, Laura Palosuo.
Handmade Interiors is the most comprehensive guide to soft furnishings and home sewing projects on the market. Handmade Interiors leads you through sewing projects such as how to sew curtains, a cushion cover or a Roman blind using step-by-step instructions and images. Compiled by experts in home design who offer advice on fabrics and variations to tailor to your specific home decoration needs. The easy to follow format makes this the perfect guide for novices and experts alike, covering the whole process of creating professional looking furnishings, from measuring, all the way through to installing your finished project.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Gardening and DIY

Spring is slowly on its way. This month’s gardening books highlight inspirational ideas across the world and DIY projects that are fun and practical.

Image from Fishpond DIY garden projects : step-by-step activities for edible gardening and backyard fun / Mat Pember and Dillon Seitchik-Reardon.
“Practical projects for small-space edible gardening and backyard fun from the much-loved Little Veggie Patch co. The book has 6 chapters – Kids, Recycled/Upcyled, X-Factor, Vertical Gardening, Gardening basics and Kitchen. There are 38 projects, and each chapter includes a break-out patch favourite feature project.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Gardens in France / edited by Angelika Taschen.
“From stylized Zen gardens in Provence to cactus displays on the Cote d’Azur, from classical palace gardens to quaint domestic beds, travel round the most beautiful gardens in France, home to some of the most elegant, charming, and inspiring horticulture in the world. The typical plants of each climatic region are represented–delphiniums, roses and irises in the North, and Californian poppies, santolinas, and lavender in the Midi. With pictures through every season, celebrate the particular beauty of spring, summer, fall, and winter, and discover plenty of inspiring ideas for your own garden.” (Library catalogue)
Syndetics book cover Kyoto gardens : masterworks of the Japanese gardener’s art / text by Judith Clancy ; photography by Ben Simmons.
Kyoto Gardens is a labor of love from master photographer Ben Simmons and Kyoto-based writer Judith Clancy. Simmons’ photographs present a fresh and contemporary look at Kyoto’s most important gardens. Their beauty is enhanced and humanized by gardeners tending the grounds using the tools of their art. Clancy’s graceful text provides historic, aesthetic and cultural context to the gardens. Combining wonder and rigor, she describes how Kyoto’s most beloved gardens remain faithful to their founders’ creative spirit and conception.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Life spaces : 120 award-winning interiors from the 2014 IDEA Awards.
“Since its inception in 2003, IDEA (Interior Design of Excellence Awards) has been celebrating the very best of an industry full of remarkable people and projects. This year, for the first time, we are publishing a book to celebrate the high quality of projects of the past year, the ones that have continually risen above the crowd to surprise and delight us.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Gracious rooms / Barbara Westbrook ; written with Heather MacIsaac.
“In her first book, the South’s most inviting designer explores her principles for creating a beautiful home rich with comfort and warmth. Barbara Westbrook has been designing classically inspired homes full of Southern charm and a European touch for more than twenty years.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Health

This month we read about running, children’s health through a combination of conventional and alternative medicine, diabetics management and how to develop healthy habits to give us the best chances to fight cancer and stay generally healthy.

Syndetics book cover Children’s health A to Z for New Zealand parents : help your child get better and stay well naturally
“Paediatrician Dr Leila Masson is well-known to many Auckland parents through her work in children’s health. She combines a traditional medical with complementary treatments in what is known as a `biomedical approach to children’s health. Her book is a practical guide to caring for your children using a mixture of traditional medicine alongside natural remedies, and the tried-and-true know-how of our mothers and grandmothers. Organised by symptoms, it is an essential guide for parents caring for children with sore tummies, bumps and bruises, skin irritations, ear infections, fevers and colds.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Thriving with diabetes : learn how to take charge of your body to balance your sugars and improve your lifelong health
“This book empowers you to take charge of your diabetes, so you don’t just deal with your symptoms, but change the way you think to improve your health, happiness, and quality of life. Through a simple four-step process, you’ll learn how to intuitively understand your blood sugars and what causes both good and bad numbers. This proactive approach results in the ability to manage diabetes personally, not just by a set of notes from the doctor. The result is immediate and satisfying improvements to total health, both physically and mentally!” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Can food be medicine against cancer?
“Does eating certain foods make any difference against cancer? How do I know which foods to eat? Can I trust what I read? In answering these questions, surgical oncologist Dr David Wilkinson, points out that nearly all cancers are not primarily genetic, but are influenced by factors under our control, including what we eat. You will be taken on a tour of the top foods that protect against cancer, and learn the scientific reasons why these foods are effective. Discover how cancer cells work and what turns them off. This book will change the way you look at food forever, and point you in the right direction to achieving cancer-resistant health for life.” (Syndetics summmary)
Syndetics book cover Light on yoga
The seminal yoga sourcebook for generations of yoga students around the world, first published in 1966, was republished in 2015.
“This definitive work features photo-illustrated, step-by-step guide to every yoga routine, and includes a week-by-week development plan, breathing techniques and yoga philosophy and spirituality for beginners and experienced teachers alike. B.K.S. Iyengar was the world’s most respected yoga teacher, widely credited as the person who brought yoga to the West. One of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Infulential People in the World, his teaching practice has been hugely impactful over the years. He died in 2014, aged 95.” (Book cover)
Syndetics book cover Attacking anxiety : a step-by-step guide to an engaging approach to treating anxiety and phobias in children with autism and other developmental disabilities
“Drawing on the principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), this book sets out a clear, enjoyable, step-by-step approach for addressing the sorts of anxieties, fears and phobias that are so common in children and teens with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and related challenges. Using this easy-to-follow model, parents and professionals will have the tools they need to help children and teens cope with and sometimes overcome anxieties caused by everyday occurrences. This book is an excellent resource for successfully alleviating many of the anxieties and phobias that interfere with life enjoyment, not only for the child but for the entire family.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Personal Development

This month we read books that challenge many preconceived ideas about the benefits of meditation, listening to our feelings and the trappings of the pursuit of happiness. Intrigued? Read on.

Syndetics book cover The outside edge : how outsiders can succeed in a world made by insiders.
“Our culture celebrates outsiders while in reality slamming the door in their face. The modern world encourages creativity while shutting-out all but a privileged few from individualistic expression. The Outside Edge is all about learning to harness the unique vantage point you possess in order to give yourself the edge required to succeed. It will show you when to embrace your outsider status and go against convention, and when to play the game, do as the insiders do and make sure you can get progress. Think of The Outside Edge as a manual for positively directing your insecurity, awkwardness and role-confusion towards a meaningful future, shaped and pursued on your own terms.” (Syndetics)
Syndetics book cover The Buddha pill : can meditation actually change you?
“In this new book, psychologists Dr. Miguel Farias and Catherine Wikholm explore the human ambition for personal change and its possible illusions, with a focus on yoga and meditation. They examine the psychological and biological evidence, from early research on Transcendental Meditation to recent brain-imaging studies on mindfulness. Controversially, The Buddha Pill argues that personal change effected by these spiritual practices can vary widely from one individual to another, and that peace and compassion may not always be the end result. Combining insights from decades of scientific research with fascinating accounts from gurus and prisoners, The Buddha Pill weaves together a unique story about the science and the delusions of personal change.” (Adapted from Syndetics)
Syndetics book cover The happiness trap : how to stop struggling and start living
“Russ Harris explains that the way most of us go about trying to find happiness ends up making us miserable, driving the epidemics of stress, anxiety, and depression. This empowering book presents the insights and techniques of ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) a revolutionary new psychotherapy based on cutting-edge research in behavioral psychology. By clarifying your values and developing mindfulness (a technique for living fully in the present moment), ACT helps you escape the happiness trap and find true satisfaction in life.” (Adapted from Syndetics)
Syndetics book cover Whole body intelligence : get out of your head and into your body to achieve greater wisdom, confidence, and success
“Executive coach Steve Sisgold, knows that the body–not the mind–is the most reliable and effective pathway to realizing your innermost desires and achieving success. His unique, body-centric approach will show you how to get out of your head and take charge of every area of your life with increased awareness, clarity, and confidence. Whole Body Intelligence teaches you how to become aware of subtle body sensations–such as gripping the phone or clenching your jaw during a tense conversation–and how to interpret their meanings, linking them to negative thoughts and behaviors that are impeding your success and happiness.” (Syndetics)

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Home & Garden Newsletter for August

Finding ways to grow all the ingredients for an entire dish in your garden would be the dream of many and this month’s selection of cooking books offer lots of ideas and inspiration. Take a look at the latest in sewing, knitting and crochet and find new ways to maintaining good health and mindfulness, preventing mental disorders and addictions. Check out the newest books at your local Wellington library and enjoy.

Cooking

This month’s selection of cookbooks feature seasonal foods with emphasis on local produce and growing your own food. Other books include ‘how to’ books like Dudefood, The First Foods Book and Cooking for Geeks.

Syndetics book cover DudeFood. Volume # 1 / [by Daniel Churchill].
“Are you a guy who has wanted to cook but doesn’t know where to start? The Dude Food book is here to educate, motivate and inspire men of all ages. With its colloquial dude language and easy to read recipes, dudes no longer have an excuse to avoid the kitchen bench. Dude Food incorporates the many scenarios guys find themselves in each day – what to have around the gym, how to impress a girl, what to feed your mates. This book will turn a standard TV dinner guy into an appealing kitchen master.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover The First Foods Book : 130 yummy recipes from weaning to the big table.
“Covering every step of the weaning journey, from six months to a year, The First Foods Book includes more than 130 recipes – from single-veg purees to exciting combinations and full meals. Every one has been rigorously tested to ensure it meets with Ella’s Kitchen nutritional standards. There is also lots of practical advice to give every parent confidence at this key stage of their baby’s development…making weaning easy and stress-free – introducing solids becomes as much of an adventure for parents as it is for the little one whose taste exploration has only just begun.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Cooking for Geeks : Real Science, Great Hacks, and Good Food / Jeff Potter.
“More than just a cookbook, Cooking for Geeks inspires you to be inventive in the kitchen and piques your curiosity about food. Presents recipes ranging in difficulty with the science and technology-minded cook in mind, providing the science behind cooking, the physiology of taste, and the techniques of molecular gastronomy.” (Book Jacket)
Syndetics book cover A Table in the Orchard : my delicious life / Michelle Crawford.
“I dreamed of a rambling old farmhouse where I could grow my own food, learn how to bake cakes and make jam. I wanted to wear gumboots. Every day.” Organizing cocktail parties at the Sydney Opera House sounds perfectly glamorous, and for a while it was for Michelle Crawford. But once she became a mother, the yearning to find her own little slice of heaven in the country could no longer be ignored….A Table in the Orchard is breathtaking proof of how seductive a taste of slow living in one of the most beautiful valleys in Tasmania might be. Like Michelle, you might be tempted to make your own crumpets or run away to the Apple Isle.” (Syndetics summary)

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Crafts

Draw creative energy from this delightful collection of new library books including knitting designs for every season, clever sewing projects and fresh ideas for lace work, including how to make beautiful buttons. Happy crafting!

Syndetics book cover Sew organized for the busy girl : tips to make the most of your time & space : 23 quick and clever sewing projects you’ll love / Heidi Staples.
“Fit sewing into your busy lifestyle with practical tips that will help you put hours back on the clock Heidi Staples, a creative mom of three, will help you organize your sewing space and works-in-progress so they are ready to roll at a moment s notice. Revive your creative life and make the most of your time with easy-to-implement advice. Stitch up 23 projects, ranging from handcrafted quilts to home decor, children’s gifts, and attractive storage cases. With an arsenal of time-savers, you ll finally finish those projects while enjoying a little “you” time at the sewing machine.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Warm days, cool knits : lighter designs for every season / Corrina Ferguson.
“Knitting is not just for cold and snowy climates! For anyone who has ever stopped to wonder what knitters in the South are wearing–and knitting–for the changing seasons, Florida designer Corrina Ferguson has set out to show us in Warm Days, Cool Knits: Lighter Designs for Every Season. Cardigans and hoodies stand in for winter coats, knitted tees and short-sleeve cardigans are perfect for spring, tanks and cropped cardis are comfortable on warm summer nights, and pullovers and shawls are just right in fall. Through her choice of lightweight yarns and bold colors, Corrina has set these pieces apart from the crowd of everyday knitted garments and shown them off as a versatile knitted southern wardrobe.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover How to make beautiful buttons / Beate Schmitz.
“Make buttons out of fabric, clay, beads and more! There are 25 designs to make with easy-to-follow instructions and step-by-step photographs accompanying every project. Buttons are not only practical additions to bags, jackets and other garments but they also make great fashion accessories all on their own. Starting with a detailed explanation for making each button, the projects span an incredible array of crafts including crochet, embroidery, knotting, felt and paint for embellishing yourhandmade beautiful buttons.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Learn to crochet, love to crochet / Anna Wilkinson ; photography by Laura Edwards.
Anna Wilkinson encouraged a new generation of crafters to take up knitting with her debut book, Learn to Knit, Love to Knit. Anna is now set to popularise the creative craft of crochet in the same way with the companion book, Learn to Crochet, Love to Crochet. The book is made up of a collection of twenty garments and accessories that will add ‘wow’ to your wardrobe but also, through making each project, you will learn the fundamentals of crochet. While the ten Learn to Crochet projects guide you through the most basic crochet techniques, the ten Love to Crochet garments provide all the inspiration and know-how you need to really master this highly versatile craft. By making your way through the book you’ll have an enviable wardrobe of handmade garments.” (Syndetics summary)

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Health

This month we take a holistic view of health, from preventative to curative, from yoga to mindfulness. We read about mental disorders, addictions and Alzheimer’s and improve our knowledge of medical terms.

Syndetics book cover Yoga for life : a journey to inner peace and freedom
“From a rebellious young woman with a dangerous heroin habit to a globe-trotting fashion model to ‘First Lady of Yoga’ (The New York Times), Colleen Saidman Yee tells the remarkable story of how she found herself through the healing power of yoga–and then inspired others to do the same.” (Library catalogue)
Syndetics book cover Fight Alzheimer’s with vitamins and antioxidants
“In this practical scientific guide, leading researcher in cancer, heart disease, and diabetes prevention Kedar N. Prasad, Ph.D., reveals the latest revolutionary discoveries on the use of antioxidants to prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease. He details how the proper combinations of vitamin and antioxidant supplements can greatly increase the effectiveness of standard medical treatments for Alzheimer’s as well as delay or even prevent onset despite a family history of the disease. This guide provides a truly holistic approach to Alzheimer’s prevention, treatment, and care.” (Adapted from Syndetics)
Syndetics book cover The gut balance revolution : boost your metabolism, restore your inner ecology, and lose the weight for good!
“Recent cutting-edge research shows that human intestinal microbiota influences metabolism, appetite, energy, hormones, inflammation, and insulin resistance. Because gut microflora plays a central role in weight management, losing weight is much more than cutting calories, fat, or carbs. When the trillions of live bacteria in our digestive tract-the gut microbiome-are balanced, excess pounds melt away and we feel revitalized. A leading authority on digestive health and the gut microbiome, Dr. Gerard E. Mullin reveals how to stifle the fat-forming, disease-promoting gut bacteria, reseed your gut with good fat-burning ones, and fertilize those friendly flora with just the right foods to reboot, rebalance, and renew your health–and lose weight for good.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover The Headspace guide to… a mindful pregnancy
“Mindfulness in Pregnancy is the concise and practical guide to achieving and maintaining mindfulness throughout every stage of having a baby. With helpful exercises for both mother to be and her partner, Andy shows how to live mindfully and get the most from pregnancy and the early days of parenthood. From creating the right conditions for conception and reducing anxiety around pregnancy and birth, to managing pain in labour and promoting well being for mother and baby in the first hours, days and weeks after birth, Andy’s simple and empowering exercises have been created to give both mother and baby a gentle, happy and positive experience.” (Syndetics summary)

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Personal Development

This month’s selection delves into the workings of co-dependent relationships and offers tools to free yourself from them, cultivating intimacy, yet separateness, creativity and inner peace.

Syndetics book cover How to predict the unpredictable : the art of outsmarting almost everyone
“We are hard-wired to believe that the world is more predictable than it is. We chase ‘winning streaks’ that are often just illusions, and we are all too predictable exactly when we try hardest not to be. In the 1970s, Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky coined the phrase ‘representativeness’ to describe the psychology of this behaviour. Poundstone makes these techniques fun, easy, and profitable for everyone, in the everyday situations that matter. You’ll learn how to tackle multiple choice tests, what internet passwords to avoid, how to up your odds of winning the office Premier League sweepstakes, and the best ways to invest your money.” (Syndetics)
Syndetics book cover Calm : calm the mind, change the world
“Join the Calm revolution. Modern life is hectic and relentless. There has never been a more important time to rediscover your pause button. Calm is the book that will show you how to take back a little bit of peace, space and all-important calm. It is a practical and pleasurable guide to twenty-first century mindfulness. Regular meditation is medically proven to be good for you. Calm is about simple, achievable habits that work with the demands of your busy life instead of pretending those demands don’t exist. Calm does not require specialist training: it uses abilities that every single one of us is born with, like creativity, spontaneity and simply noticing the world around you. Calm demystifies mindfulness and shows you the many simple ways to be mindful while carrying on with your life.” (Syndetics)
Syndetics book cover The upside of stress : why stress is good for you, and how to get good at it
“The author of The Willpower Instinct delivers a controversial and groundbreaking new book that overturns long-held beliefs about stress. More than forty-four percent of Americans admit to losing sleep over stress. And while most of us do everything we can to reduce it, Stanford psychologist and bestselling author Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D., delivers a startling message: Stress isn’t bad. In The Upside of Stress, McGonigal highlights new research indicating that stress can, in fact, make us stronger, smarter, and happier–if we learn how to embrace it. McGonigal combines science, stories, and exercises into an engaging and practical book that is both entertaining and life-changing. McGonigal’s TED talk on the subject has already received more than 7 million views.” (Syndetics)
Syndetics book cover Lessons of lifelong intimacy : building a stronger marriage without losing yourself–the 9 principles of a balanced and happy relationship
“Michael Gurian offers a groundbreaking plan for couples seeking to build a healthy relationship, work through past hurts, and create greater intimacy. Recent university studies show that the most frequent reason relationships dissolve is not abuse, alcoholism, money, or even infidelity, but rather a lack of emotional fulfillment. Most books on love and marriage focus on teaching communication and conflict skills, but neglect to help couples with the “other half” of intimacy–separateness. In this practical yet personal guide to love, Gurian details the benefits of creating a lifelong balance of closeness and separateness. Rich with examples and case studies, this book presents strategies for communication and conflict that build more emotional balance, while showing how intimate separateness can be the key to lifelong happiness.”(Syndetics)

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Sowing seeds for Christmas

Spring is at the door and it’s perfect timing to sow some seeds and grow plants indoors. You can grow herbs, beetroot, broad beans, cabbage, rocket, onion and tomatoes now and harvest for Christmas.

Syndetics book coverYear-round indoor salad gardening : how to grow nutrient-dense, soil-sprouted greens in less than 10 days / Peter Burke.
“You can grow all the fresh salad greens you need for the winter months (or throughout the entire year) with no lights, no pumps, and no greenhouse. The result: healthy, homegrown salad greens at a fraction of the cost of buying them at the market. The secret: start them in the dark. Growing “Soil Sprouts”– a method that encourages a long stem without expansive roots, and provides delicious salad greens in just seven to ten days, way earlier than any other method, with much less work. All you need is a windowsill or two. (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHomegrown herb garden : a guide to growing and culinary uses / Lisa Baker Morgan and Ann McCormick.
“Take your home cooking to the next level by incorporating fresh homegrown herbs! You don’t need lots of space for a huge herb garden, and you don’t need to spend a lot of money on fresh herbs at the grocery store or farmers’ market. With Homegrown Herb Garden , you can choose the herb or herbs you will use the most and build your herb garden around them. Start with an overview of how to grow, harvest, and store herbs. Then, learn how to handle each herb and what flavors they work well with. The culinary section includes how to prepare and use your herbs, plus savory and sweet recipes to feature them in. Choose your favorite herbs, learn to grow them successfully, and never be at a loss for what to do with them!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPlantiful : start small, grow big with 150 plants that spread, self-sow, and overwinter / Kristin Green.
” Plantiful shows you how to have an easy, gorgeous garden packed with plants by simply making the right choices. Kristen Green highlights plants that help a garden quickly grow by self-sowing and spreading and teaches you how to expand the garden and extend the life of a plant by overwintering. The book features plant profiles for 50 self-sowers (including columbine, milkweed, and foxglove), 50 spreaders (such as clematis, snow poppy, and spearmint), and 50 plants that overwinter (including lemon verbena, begonia, and Chinese hibiscus). Additional gardening tips, design ideas, and inspirational photos will motivate and inspire gardeners of all levels.” (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe new kitchen garden : how to grow some of what you eat no matter where you live / Mark Diacono.
“Mark captures the spirit of adventure and imagination of those growing food in the twenty-first century. He takes ideas from gardens around the world, including that of his own home, Otter Farm in Devon, with its unique blend of orchards, vineyards, forest gardens, edible hedges, perennial garden and veg patch. Mark shows you the full exciting breadth of what a kitchen garden can be. Everything is here – the tools, the techniques, the ideas and the knowledge – to enable you to realise that vision of your own kitchen garden.Whether you have a few pots of chillies or a community farm, whether you wish to plant in ordered rows or create an edible jungle, The New Kitchen Garden is for you.” (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCourtyard kitchen : recipes and growing tips for herbs and potted fruits / Natalie Boog.
“80+ recipes using herbs and potted fruits – for urban foodies who crave a taste of the country in their home-cooking” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverGrowing beautiful food : a gardener’s guide to cultivating extraordinary vegetables and fruit / written and photographed by Matthew Benson.
“Author Matthew Benson restored a time-worn gentleman’s farm and operates a CSA on one small acre of the land, offering vegetables, orchard fruit, cut flowers, herbs, eggs, and honey from the property. His garden-to-table operation offers an edible feast of textures, colors, and aromas and has grown into a way to feed others. Growing Beautiful Food is both inspiration and instruction, with detailed growing advice for 50 remarkable crops, a memorable narrative, and evocative imagery. It’s a photographic journey through four seasons in the garden, fueling the dream that you can connect to the land by growing your own food. Whether gardeners, families, farmers, or chefs, readers will cometo the table motivated by the flavor of homegrown, the message of self sufficiency, and the beautiful food that’s as local as their backyards.” (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe garden forager / Adele Nozedar ; illustrated by Lizzie Harper.
“In high-end restaurants and in the home, more and more cooks have discovered the joy of using natural, foraged ingredients. But, what few realise is that you don’t necessarily have to go rootling in hedgerows or woodlands to find them.  Most gardeners are completely unaware that what they have actually planted is a rather exotic kitchen garden. The Garden Forager explores over 40 of the most popular garden plants that have edible, medicinal or even cosmetic potential, accompanied by recipes, remedies, and interesting facts, and illustrated throughout in exquisite watercolours by Lizzie Harper. ” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCourtyard kitchen : recipes and growing tips for herbs and potted fruits / Natalie Boog.
“80+ recipes using herbs and potted fruits – for urban foodies who crave a taste of the country in their home-cooking” (Syndetics summary)

Home, garden & DIY in Winter – featuring gardening for kids & DIY furniture

This month’s recent pick features home DIY and gardening projects, including some ideas for keeping the little ones busy in the winter! Also in this month’s picks — check out houses with energy saving designs.

Syndetics book coverHandmade personalized photo gifts: over 75 creative DIY gifts and keepsakes to make from your photographs
“Photographs always evoke strong emotions with those special moments caught on camera–this book shows you over 75 fabulous ways to display your photographs on virtually any surface! Using the very latest trends, techniques and materials this books shows you how photos can be added to practically any surface to create unique gifts. Project ideas include: canvas prints, bottles, plates, mugs and jars, jewellery, cushions, blankets, toys and puzzles. Step-by-step photographs will both teach and inspire you to create amazing results–so give your creativity free rein and fill your life with your special moments.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCreative shrub garden: eye-catching combinations for year-round interest
“The Creative Shrub Garden celebrates a plant that is too often taken for granted and gives gardeners the confidence to use shrubs in the design-forward treatment they deserve. This book shows you how to make the most of the many benefits of shrubs–including their hardiness, year-long beauty, size, and low-maintenance nature–by making them the main element in a garden design. McIndoe teaches you the basics first, with tips on choosing shrubs based on a garden’s size, determining soil and climate needs, and pruning and maintenance. He then offers hundreds of shrub combinations that work with 15 main garden styles, including coastal, cottage, Mediterranean, tropical, urban, and more.” (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDIY furniture 2 : a step-by-step guide / Christopher Stuart.
“Featuring 30 new designs by leading designer-makers from around the world, DIY Furniture 2 builds on the international success of the previous title, showing you step-by-step how to make unique designer furniture.Including both conceptual objects and modern designs, the book showcases innovative processes using readily available materials commonly found at the local hardware store. Each project features diagrams with short, easy-to-follow instructions on how to build the piece.The projects range from novice to experienced, allowing the reader to start where they are comfortable and work towards more difficult projects as they gain knowledge, familiarity with tools, and confidence.The designs in this book will have you thinking about common materials in a whole new way!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverProjectKid / Amanda Kingloff ; photographs by Alexandra Grablewski.
“Perfect for crafty parents who are eager to get their kids excited about DIY. Have you ever think a body-wash bottle would make a perfect rocket ship? Author Kingloff uses everyday objects in an unexpected, ingenious way. And these are projects for things kids want to make–and keep–from a juice-box owl to a pirate ship to a curio cabinet for displaying all of their treasures, plus games, jewellery, and more. Also included in the book are basic crafting lessons (such as pom-pom making and weaving) to help children of all ages build a DIY arsenal, a handy guide to must-have tools and materials, and a source directory.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTaming wildflowers : bringing the beauty and splendor of nature’s blooms into your own backyard / Miriam Goldberger.
“Easily cultivate wildflowers in your own garden…and have a year-after-year supply of gorgeous flowers at your fingertips. Wildflower farmer and floral designer Miriam Goldberger is here to show you how.” (Library Catalogue)

Syndetics book coverThe nesting place : it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful / Myquillyn Smith.
“Myquillyn believes that there is beauty in imperfection, in the lived-in and loved-on and used-just-about-up. Imperfections put people at ease and free us to take risks and create the home-and the life-we’ve always wanted. Myquillyn’s warm and insightful words are paired with her own gorgeous four-color photos and creative, easy ideas for arranging, decorating, and building a home that welcomes everyone. Readers will learn how to create their own style-without breaking the bank or stressing over comparisons.” (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverGardening lab for kids : 52 fun experiments to learn, grow, harvest, make, play, and enjoy your garden / Renata Fossen Brown.
“A refreshing source of ideas to help your children learn to grow their own patch of earth. This fun and creative book features 52 plant-related activities set into weekly lessons, beginning with learning to read maps to find your heat zone, moving through seeds, soil, composting, and then creating garden art and appreciating your natural surroundings. Author Renata Fossen Brown guides your family through fun opportunities learning about botany, ecology, the seasons, food, patience, insects, eating, and cooking. The labs can be used as singular projects or to build up to a year of hands-on outdoor experiences. So, slip on your muddy clothes, and get out and grow.” (Abridged from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverWarm house, cool house : inspirational designs for low-energy housing / Nick Hollo ; foreword by Jamie Durie.
“To aid in the minimization of environmental impact, this book offers valuable advice on how to help keep homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter with little or no reliance upon appliances. Illustrated with more than 100 inspiring contemporary examples of low-energy housing design, this fully updated edition contains practical and clever suggestions to make any home–in any climatic zone–an environmentally sustainable, comfortable, and attractive place to live year-round, while keeping electricity, gas, and water bills comfortably low.” (Syndetics summary)

Cosy crafts and home DIY projects for Winter – new home & garden books

This month’s books of seasonal desserts, cosy quilts, beautiful flower arrangements, and fresh veges will surely warm up your winter!

Syndetics book coverWintersweet : seasonal desserts to warm the home / Tammy Donroe Inman.
“Who says the winter months have to be bleak and barren? Author Tammy Donroe sees this season as an opportunity to stay inside, fire up the oven, and produce decadent desserts from the bounty of wholesome winter ingredients. ‘Wintersweet’ encourages readers to make use of fresh, local ingredients for warming seasonal desserts.The fresh and rustic recipes in ‘Wintersweet’ push the envelope of traditional winter desserts like pumpkin or apple pies with such delicacies as Pear Cranberry Clafouti, Spicy Prune Cake with Penuche Frosting, Tangelo Sorbet, and Goat Cheese Cake with Dried Cherry Compote. ‘Wintersweet’ is the perfect dessert companion to make the year’s coldest season a bit more festive.” (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHandmade gatherings : recipes & crafts for seasonal celebrations and potluck parties / Ashley English ; photographs by Jen Altman.
“Frosty winter fetes, lush springtime soirees, sultry summer get-togethers, and crisp autumn affairs–it’s all here. Handmade Gatherings offers: 16 seasonal party ideas ; 52 recipes ; 32 crafts and activities. From the decor, to the entertainment, on down to the recipes themselves, “Handmade Gatherings” presents inspired suggestions for thoughtful, flavorful, festive communal dining. Food, decor, crafts, and more are part of each event, all collectively assembled and executed.” (Abridged from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverHere comes winter: quilted projects to warm your home
“Inspired by the frosty winters of Saskatchewan, Jeanne Large and Shelley Wicks are back with more of the whimsical designs that have enchanted quilters around the world. Make your home cozy all winter with decorative projects ranging in size and shape from pillows and banners to wall hangings, table runners, and lap quilts.” (Abridged from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe plant recipe book : 100 living arrangements for any home in any season / Baylor Chapman ; photographs by Paige Green.
“Whether your botanic tastes run to formal with straight lines or wispy and loose with a woodland feel, there is something that will appeal to you in this groundbreaking collection. A helpful ingredient chart will enable the novice to understand better the patterns behind the designs featured and allow for the development of individual designs.” (Library Journal)

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.” (Back cover)

Syndetics book coverFor the love of veg : get the best out of your seasonal fruit and vegetables / Bryn Williams with Kay Plunkett-Hogge ; photography by Andy Sewell.
“From savoury to sweet, and from the vegetable patch to the orchard, Bryn shows us how to make the most of fruit and vegetables. Using in-season produce is cost-efficient and healthy – but with Bryn, it is delicious, too. Celebrate the celeriac with Celeriac and Crispy Duck Egg Salad or Celeriac and Apple Soup; reinvent the courgette with Marinated Courgette, Pine Nuts and Parmesan, and Courgette Flower and Halibut. There are sweet vegetable options, too, such as Pea Bavarois or Sweetcorn Panna Cotta. Explore the herb garden, with Basil Sorbet, Bay Leaf Ice Cream and Lavender Vinaigrette. And experiment with fruit with Spiced Poached Pear and Venison, Lemon and Polenta Cake, and Baked Plum and Honey Ice Cream.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverOne woman farm : my life shared with sheep, pigs, chickens, goats and a fine fiddle / Jenna Woginrich ; illustrations by Emma Dibben.
“Jenna Woginrich’s inspiring journey from city cubicle to rural homestead has captivated readers of her blog and previous books. Now, in One-Woman Farm, Woginrich shares the joys, sorrows, trials, epiphanies, and blessings she discovers during a year spent farming on her own land, finding deep fulfillment in the practical tasks and timeless rituals of the agricultural life.” (Library catalogue)

New Books for Gardening

Starting with a unique take on gardening , the origins and histories of garden tools, this selection of books contain advice, histories and creative ideas on the gardening theme.

Syndetics book coverThe history of the garden in fifty tools / Bill Laws.
Every tool has a tale to tell. A History of the Garden in Fifty Tools takes you on a fascinating historical and horticultural journey, describing the origin and evolution of fifty pieces of garden gear. The garden shed shelters some improbable stories, from the Mayan clay-pot makers to the tailor trimming the uniforms of English Redcoats who invented the lawn mower; from the manic evolution of the seventeenth-century Dutch bulb planter to the plant container that created a movable orchard at Versailles.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverPlantiful : start small, grow big with 150 plants that spread, self-sow, and overwinter / Kristin Green.
Plantiful shows you how to have an easy, gorgeous garden packed with plants by simply making the right choices. Kristen Green highlights plants that help a garden quickly grow by self-sowing and spreading and teaches you how to expand the garden and extend the life of a plant by overwintering. Full of gardening tips, design ideas, and inspirational photos will motivate and inspire gardeners of all levels.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary) 

Syndetics book coverDecorate with flowers : creative ideas for flowers & containers around the home / Holly Becker & Leslie Shewring.
“In this gorgeous and unique book, Holly Becker teams up with stylist Leslie Shewring to offer practical know-how and colorful inspiration for decorating the home with florals. Beginning with the basics of flower arranging and progressing on to decorating ideas for a range of styles–such as vintage, eclectic, and modern with creative DIY flower and container projects peppered throughout, this book offers a bunch of fresh ideas for flower enthusiasts and home decorators on any budget.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverCharles Dowding’s veg journal : expert no-dig advice, month by month / Charles Dowding.
“Based on Charles Dowding’s Vegetable Course this book is arranged in a useful monthly journal so that no activity is overlooked and readers can follow his mantra of ‘little and often’. Charles Dowding proves the efficacy of no-dig gardening, and using step by steps guidance with photos shows how to plan a veg garden, construct a raised bed, sow seed indoors and outdoors in spring, grow on young crops, protect his plants from the weather and pests through the season until he celebrates the joy of harvesting.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverHow to grow beautiful roses : a practical guide to growing, caring for and maintaining roses, shown in over 275 glorious photographs / Peter McHoy.
“This is a comprehensive guide to growing, maintaining and designing with the world’s most enduring flower. It begins with a fascinating history of the rose, then provides instructions for planting and caring for roses in borders, as climbers, ramblers and standards, as well as how to grow ground-cover, miniature and container roses.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book cover Tudor Monastry Farm: life in rural England 500 years ago / [Ruth Goodman, Peter Ginn & Tom Pinfold. 
“Ruth Goodman and Peter Ginn have become familiar faces on BBC2 after their hugely popular and immersive time-travelling experiments, Victorian, Edwardian and Wartime Farm. But for their fourth series, and our accompanying book, they have joined forces with Tom Pinfold to take on their biggest challenge yet: going back to Tudor England to endure the harsh realities of working for an Abbey Farm.Scrupulously researched, totally authentic and with its own contemporary narrative playing out within an accurate reconstruction of Tudor England, this is a fantastic glimpse into history, as it was lived. This is set to be Peter, Ruth and Tom’s most ambitious historical assignment yet.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverThe cut flower patch : grow your own cut flowers all year round / by Louise Curley.
“Louise Curley looks at what makes a great cut flower, ideal conditions and soil and the tools you’ll need. There is advice on what to grow – from favourite hardy annuals, half hardies and biennials to spring and summer bulbs to adding foliage and fillers to balance arrangements – and advice on how and when to sow, how to support your plants and tips on weeding, deadheading, pests and feeding.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book cover Of Rhubard and Roses: the Telegraph book of the garden / edited by Tim Richardson.
“The Telegraph” has long enjoyed the closest association with gardeners and it has always revelled in the glory and variety of Britain’s horticultural heritage, whether celebrating the most prized formal gardens, like Great Dixter, or offering sage advice on pruning penstemon from the pages of the Weekend section.  Whatever form it takes – Zen minimalism, or a breeding ground for prize-winning marrows – few things could be more central to the world of the “Telegraph” reader than the garden, which is why the paper has always attracted the best writers on the subject.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

New Garden books for April

 You will find a wide array of subject matter traversed in these gardening books fresh to shelves here at the library. Touching on subjects such as  gardening gently with wildlife in mind, bamboo and its wonders, then to finding out how big country manors of yesteryear were managed (and yes there is a section on grounds management which earns the book Wise words & country house ways  a part in this selection) to modern garden design  this selection makes a pot pouri of different takes on what it is to garden.

Syndetics book coverThe wildlife-friendly vegetable gardener : how to grow food in harmony with nature / Tammi Hartung ; illustrations by Holly Ward Bimba.
“This one-of-a-kind book shows you how to create a peaceful co-existence between your vegetable garden and the wildlife who consider it part of their habitat. By understanding and working with the surrounding environment instead of continually fighting it you ll reap a larger harvest with much less stress and effort. Tammi Hartungexplains how to start with a hardy and healthy garden, create beneficial relationships through smart planting, attract helpful insects and pollinators, intentionally create habitats for wildlife, and much more.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverBamboo / Susanne Lucas.
“We may think of bamboo only as a snack for cuddly panda bears, but we use the plant as food, clothing, paper, fabric, and shelter. Susanne Lucas shows how bamboo has always met the physical and spiritual requirements of humanity while at the same time being exploited by people everywhere. Lucas describes how bamboo’s special characteristics, such as its ability to grow quickly and thus be an easily replaced resource, offers potential solutions to modern ecological dilemmas. She explores the vital role bamboo plays in the survival of many animals and ecosystems, as well as its use for some of the earliest books ever written, as the framework for houses, and for musical instruments. As modern research and technologies advance, she explains, bamboo use has increased dramatically–it can now be found in the filaments of light bulbs, airplanes, the reinforcements of concrete, and even bicycles. Filled with illustrations, Bamboo is an interesting new take on a plant that is both very old and very new.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)
 
Syndetics book coverThe good life lab : radical experiments in hands-on living / Wendy Jehanara Tremayne. 
“This is the inspirational story of how one couple  moved to rural New Mexico, where they made, built, invented, foraged, and grew all they needed to live self-sufficiently, discovering a new sense of value and abundance in the process. They share tips and tutorials to guide readers in the discovery of a fulfilling new lifestyle that relies less on money. Tremayne” “not only teaches the art of making biofuel, appliances, structures, gardens, food, and medicine but also presents reasons for makers to share their innovations and ideas through open source and creative commons licenses.Practical, contemplative, and action-oriented, The Good Life Lab is the manual for life in a post-consumer age.”
(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverWise words & country house ways / Ruth Binney ; foreword by Julian Fellowes.
“This charming guide to the world of the English country house reveals all the essential hints and tips for living in and running a great house, and the rules of etiquette and manners that existed both ‘upstairs’ and ‘downstairs’. Since correct behaviour was so important to all activities of the house, ‘A Matter of Manners’ addresses the essentials of etiquette, a theme that also extends into ‘Leisure, Entertainment and Sport’. And finally there is the  ‘Garden and Grounds’ section focuses on everything from the cultivation of exotic fruit for the table to brewing and the care of horses and other animals.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverGarden voices : Australian designers : their stories / Anne Latreille.
Garden Voices is unique. It is the first book to embark on a study of designers who demonstrate a deep understanding of the Australian environment and an ability to work creatively with it. This includes gardens in lush tropical forests and chilly mountains, arid deserts and rolling countryside, beside rivers and the sea, in closepacked inner cities and spreading suburbs.  With research extending over fourteen years, it is a vital reference for anyone – from professional designer to garden lover – who seeks a broader understanding of designing gardens in Australia, now and in the future.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverLandprints : the landscape designs of Bernard Trainor / by Susan Heeger ; photography by Jason Liske and Marion Brenner.
Australian-born landscape designer Bernard Trainor has made it his life’s work to capture the wild soul of his adopted home of Northern California.  Across airy hilltops, craggy seasides, and other one-of-a-kind tracts, Trainor applies simple, understated frames to rugged natural panoramas, the better to bring them into focus. Designed to engage all of the senses—the sound of water, the smell of sage—Trainor’s gardens create sensory memories that foster a deep connection to the land.Landprintsshowcases ten of his most ambitious and inspiring gardens through gorgeous photography and detailed project descriptions.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverThe new English garden / Tim Richardson ; photographs by Andrew Lawson ; with Jane Sabire and Rachel Warne.
“A comprehensive overview of the contemporary English garden scene, by the dream team of Tim Richardson, most perceptive and insightful of contemporary writers on gardens, and renowned garden photographer Andrew Lawson. The past ten to fifteen years have been an exceptionally rich period in English garden design, and for this book Tim Richardson has selected twenty-five gardens which have gone through an intense phase of creativity and innovation during this time span.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverEveryday roses : how to grow Knock Out® and other easy-care garden roses / Paul Zimmerman.
 ” Aimed at gardeners who want the beauty of roses without the fuss, this book offers an approach that is more accessible and environmentally friendly than competing volumes–and no other book in the current market focuses exclusively on modern roses and getting the most out of them. Readers will find helpful suggestions for choosing roses based on landscape need, tips on what to look for when buying roses, new techniques for the best way to plant roses, and sensible time-saving methods to maintain their roses throughout the year.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverTalk about contemporary gardens / Chantal Colleu-Dumond ; [translated from the French by John Lee.
The garden has been a major art form for many civilizations, and has evolved considerable, experiencing a particularly rapid development over the last thirty years. New practices, materials, and plants; the contemporary decline of grand gardening traditions; links with other artistic milieus; and some unexpected and daring creations have secured the garden’s status as a thriving creative universe of infinite diversity. Landscape architects, urban planners, and gardeners continue to surprise, to reinvent distinctive gardens, and to create innovative new horizons.”(Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverTherapeutic landscapes: an evidence-based approach to designing healing gardens and restorative outdoor spaces
“Whether the outdoor space is a courtyard, a campus, or a roof garden; whether it is part of an acute care or a residential facility; or whether it serves children, cancer patients, veterans, or the elderly, this comprehensive guide delivers proven approaches to the design of beautiful spaces that reduce stress, encourage emotional equilibrium, support recovery from illness or injury, and help patients regain lost or impaired abilities.” (Adaped Syndetics Summary)

Home, Garden and DIY March: Stylish Living and Property Investment

Gorgeous hand-made bouquet, with a hint of caffeine-influenced design, and beautifully preserved vegetables will bring your home a fresh new look. Also have a look at the property investment books.

Syndetics book coverDecorate with flowers: creative ideas for flowers and containers around the home
“This unique collaboration between international bestselling interiors author and stylist Holly Becker of the award-winning design blog, decor, and Leslie Shewring, product designer, photographer and stylist, offers advice on selecting, combining and arranging flowers to best complement your decor. Decorate with Flowers contains a host of exciting ideas separated into eight gorgeous styles, showing flowers in relaxed, casual homes alongside those with some serious panache. You’ll find a host of creative ideas for entertaining at home, from tea parties to cocktails with friends.” (adapted from Amazon.co.uk)

Syndetics book coverBuilt for caffeine / by Ben Crawford.
“In the land of the long black and flat white, it’s no surprise that some of New Zealand’s most innovative and original design is found in our cafes. In Built for Caffeine, Ben Crawford explores the beautiful, inventive and sometimes quirky interior design from 20 favourite cafes nationwide… Contains interviews with the owners, architects and designers of each cafe, retelling their inspiring stories before translating their fit-out features into design ideas and tips that you can use in your own home.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverRowan Bishop with relish : fine chutneys, pickles & more / photographs by Carolyn Robertson.
“Preserving fresh seasonal produce as well as adding interest and flavour to meals with chutneys, pickles, relishes and sauces are age-old, timeless practices. In this, her fifth book, Rowan Bishop indulges her passion for these wonderfully versatile condiments. Not content to stick with the traditional, Rowan has developed over 50 recipes designed to reduce sugar content and let the natural qualities of ingredients shine. She has then enhanced and intensified flavours with spices and herbs from different cuisines and also extended the preserves repertoire beyond the familiar, to include sambals, salsas, pastes, tapenades, a liqueur and even a ‘champagne’. Ideal for the home gardener as well as easy on the budget, these are recipes to savour and relish.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe manual of seed saving : harvesting, storing, and sowing techniques for vegetables, herbs, and fruits / Andrea Heistinger ; in association with Arche Noah, Pro Specie Rara ; translated by Ian Miller.
“Heistinger, an Austrian agronomist, in association with Austrian (Arche Noah) and Swiss (Pro Specia Rara) conservation foundations, presents agronomist Miller’s translation of her award-winning Austrian publication, a comprehensive guide to correctly harvesting, storing, and planting seeds from more than 100 vegetables, fruits, and herbs. The author aims to enable gardeners and farmers to create their own heirloom seeds rather than depending on commercial varieties to grow plants that will thrive under local conditions, to maintain existing plant varieties that may be otherwise lost, to diversify crops, and simply to enjoy good-tasting homegrown foods. The tested techniques offered here in consultation with global experts are easy to follow in both photographs and text. Arranged alphabetically by common plant name, from amaranth to “tomato and relatives,” each plant is described in terms of botanical and propagation characteristics. Also included for each entry are overviews of the plant family, “What You’ll Need” to harvest the plant’s seed, pollination notes, and extensive information on growing the plant for its seeds, harvesting it, selection criteria of which to be aware, and cultivation history. VERDICT With increasing numbers of edible plant varieties disappearing from seed catalogs and gardens, this work enables its audience to engage in a worthy pursuit. It will be very useful for hobbyist and professional growers. A green thumb up.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverTruth lies & real estate : a property seller’s essential guide / Nigel Mayson & Wendy Mayson.
“The authors, who have extensive experience in both property and marketing in Australia, New Zealand and the UK, offer a practical guide for all property owners to confidently and successfully negotiate their way through the agent/agency appointment, property marketing, and selling processes.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverInvest & prosper with property : how Kiwis can profit from property investment / David Whitburn.
“A bang-up-to-date book on property investment in New Zealand, with lots of practical advice from a rising star in this market. This book has been written as an authoritative text on New Zealand property investment. Its goal is to inform investors and inspire and teach would-be investors about how investing in property the right way can make for an improved life. There have been numerous changes to legislation recently, requiring the vast majority of New Zealand property investors and would-be investors to consider changing their investment strategy in response. The global financial crisis and systemic changes to the finance industry also require changes from investors. The book includes many of the author’s own experiences. It is clear and readable in its technical aspects. Chapters include: Why should I invest in property? What do I need to know to get started? Should I buy commercial or residential property? What investment strategy is best for me? How can I really check out a property? How do I structure my property ownership? How can I save money on my mortgage? What do I need to know about accounting and taxation? How do I get and keep good tenants? How can I minimise risks… and much more.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe New Zealand guide on how to subdivide a 1/4 acre property : my experience of residential subdivision in New Zealand / by Toa Greening.
“This book is the complete guide on ¼ acre residential property subdivisions in New Zealand. A 90 page compilation of budgeting calculations, estimations, graphs, site diagrams, pictures and case studies are used throughout to illustrate the various aspects of property development and subdivision. “The aim is to share my experiences of subdividing a quarter acre section so that you too can realise the potential of property subdivision. I will show you how the initial deposit of $30,000 turned into $400,000 in less than five years through property subdivision. More importantly I will teach you how to successfully subdivide property yourself.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHomes people can afford : how to improve housing in New Zealand / edited by Sarah Bierre, Philippa Howden-Chapman & Lisa Early.
“This book investigates New Zealand’s shortage of affordable and social housing. Contributors from a variety of disciplines and policy perspectives argue that when affordable and social housing is under-provided by the market, more active policies and investment are required from central and local government. They offer viable and exciting options which, in combination, could house New Zealanders in homes they can afford. The book explores new models of urban living that encourage a sense of community and a good quality of life, and shows that intelligent housing policy can help make communities healthier, happier, more stable and more resilient to climate change. In Aotearoa New Zealand we need once more to see quality, healthy, safe housing, whether it is rented in the public or private sector, or owner-occupied, as a human right.” (Publisher’s information)

Refresh your home and garden this summer: Recent Picks For February

This year’s new books features great innovative ideas for decorating and refreshing the home and garden. Have a browse.

Syndetics book coverBathroom ideas you can use : secrets & solutions for freshening up the hardest-working room in your house / Chris Peterson.
“A design and inspiration book that is packed full with gorgeous photos of beautiful bathrooms and highly desired bathroom fixtures. It contains useful information and intelligent discussion, and features hundreds of beautiful photos of rooms, materials and fixtures. All of the most common fixtures include: multi-head shower stalls, tubs and spas, vanities, lavatory sinks, toilets and bidets, vent fans and even saunas and infrared steam baths. Accessories can transform a plain bath into a luxury salon, including: towel warmers, anti-fog mirrors, cabinetry and cabinet organizers, paper holders and towel rods, shower doors, and home electronics. Whatever your plans may be, from a simple refreshing to a complete makeover, your next bathroom remodeling project starts here.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCreative vegetable gardening
“British garden writer Larkcom suggests ways to enliven vegetable gardens by adding flowers, arches, arbors or free-standing decorative items. Beginning with a brief overview of the potager, the centuries-old concept of vegetable gardening in France, she moves from vast elegantly designed gardens to the practical, with photos of British gardens she knows. Elements of design and siting are explained and beautifully illustrated in sufficient detail for even novice gardeners who want to embellish their vegetable patches with colorful unexpected elements. Taking on all details, from myriad variations on fencing, edging and garden paths to the multiple color and texture diversity of various lettuces, spinaches and other greens, Larkcom also offers a comprehensive alphabetical directory of vegetables (including little-known varieties).” (adapted from Publisher Weekly)

Syndetics book coverGardens are for living: design inspiration for outdoor spaces
“Here, Kameon shares insights for making dynamic outdoor spaces that are both beautiful and usable. Inspired by the midcentury-modern ethos that introduced the idea of everyday outdoor living, she shares strategies for making complete environments-what to look for when choosing the paths, walls, and plants but also the lighting, furniture, and accessories. The goal is to create a linked series of warm settings for different purposes to suit different occasions-whether it is a patio for cocktails around the fire pit, a large table for dinner parties, or a cozy hangout nook for curling up with a book. She also shows how to use elements like mats, pillows, lanterns, and benches to carve out individual retreats. It is an inspiring lifestyle with deep roots in California, but one that can be created anywhere.” (Abridged from Syndetic summary)

Syndetics book coverHomes from home : inventive small spaces, from chic shacks to cabins and caravans / Vinny Lee.
“Lee (Recycled Spaces) opens with a reminder that “there is something special about a small, intimate living space, a place where you can let your imagination roam and where responsibilities are few and far between.” The simplicity of these homes may only be skin deep-to convert an old grain store into a residence, the builders used the same tinfoil insulation used in space shuttle construction. The book explores “huts” made from metal, stone, and clay and highlights the appeal of wood structures, including treehouses with long winding staircase up into the branches. Some of the spaces are pure fantasy-a Swiss mountain chalet built by local craftsmen pegging the wood beams rather than nailing, or a South African rondavel with a thatch roof that needs regular patching and replacement. Others seem achievable by anyone: a pop-up trailer “drawn, cut, pasted and sewn by hand.” The author promotes a philosophy of enjoying the natural surroundings: use rainwater to wash hair, harvest herbs to make fresh teas, and decorate with old and recycled furniture and accessories.” (Adapted from Publisher Weekly)

Syndetics book coverConverted houses : New Zealand architecture recycled / photography, Daniel Allen ; text, Lucinda Diack.
“Converted Houses showcases clever examples of New Zealand’s early architecture being recycled for modern day living. Industrial and farming buildings, halls, chapels, community landmarks and even a cool store are among the clever conversions featured within this inspiring collection of innovative homes.” (Publisher’s information)

Syndetics book cover“Style your modern vintage home : a guide to buying, restoring and styling from the 1920s to the 1990s / Kate Beavis ; foreword by Paloma Faith.
Style Your Modern Vintage Home is an inspirational book for all vintage enthusiasts. It covers a decade from the 1920s to the 1990s, and provides practical tip for buying, styling and restoring your vintage homewares home. Vintage enthusiasts can restore or integrate the living room, bedroom, kitchen, study, hall and even the garden.” (adapted from Amazon.co.uk)

Syndetics book coverFarrow & Ball : decorating with colour / Ros Byam Shaw ; photography by Jan Baldwin.
“Farrow & Ball is an iconic British brand and a great British success story. Its paints and wallpapers are used to decorate stylish homes all over the world. Following on from the best-selling Farrow and Ball Living with Colour, this book features a fabulous range of homes, all of which have been specially photographed for the book.” (Syndetics summary)


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