Book Preview: Decoding Gardening Advice

Decoding Gardening Advice cover imageI read a lot of books on gardening. Between books I receive from publishers for review and books I borrow from a local library for research on specific gardens I am designing, most of them fall into the same general category – relaying information to the gardener that, when it comes right down to it, is meant to read and regurgitated.

You have a specific problem in your garden…well, here’s my solution. To be honest, there’s not a whole lot of thinking involved on the reader’s part.

I find that many gardening books are written to share information but not to truly educate the reader/gardener.  Decoding Gardening Advice:  The Science Behind the 100 Most Common Recommendations by Jeff Gillman and Meleah Maynard is different.

Growing a Gardener

Decoding Gardening Advice is for the thinking gardener, someone who not only wants a beautiful garden but also wants to grow as a gardener. It’s a book for any gardener who wants to understand why specific advice they’ve heard time and again from well-meaning experts, friends and garden gurus, may or may not actually work.

Don’t let the words ‘science behind’ in the title scare you away, this is an easy-to-read but well-researched book that will help you become a better gardener.  Gillman and Maynard give humorous, science-based advice that will save you time and money and help you sort out the often contradictory advice we gardeners give and receive.

Good, Debatable & Wrong

Chapters on topics ranging from soil to water to mulch to all kinds of  plants, pests and lawn care are divided into three distinct sections:  Good Advice, Advice That’s Debatable and Advice That’s Just Wrong.

Each common recommendation is reviewed, the authors then look at what happens if you follow the advice and then tell you either how to do it in your garden (good advice) or how to do it better (debatable and bad advice).

Decoding Gardening Advice is one of those books that you’ll refer to again and again. Because it’s filled with practical, and usable advice, you’ll find yourself checking out the facts behind recommendations you’re bound to hear over the garden fence, at your next garden club meeting, or even advice you read on your favorite blog.

Note:  I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Timber Press, for the express purpose of reviewing it.

5 thoughts on “Book Preview: Decoding Gardening Advice

  1. I enjoy Jeff Gillman’s books. They offer science-backed advice in understandable terms. Glad to see he and his co-author do the same in this book. Adding it to my list.

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