RECOMMENDED GARDENING/HORTICULTURAL/BOTANICAL BOOKS AND PERSONAL STUDIES INTO THE SUBJECT

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by ARMANDII, Oct 5, 2020.

  1. ARMANDII

    ARMANDII Low Flying Administrator Staff Member

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    Some of my books...........
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    I also have a wall long set of book shelves in my main bedroom and they are gardening books dating back to the late 18th Century and the gardening practices using chemical are definitely not used today for safety reasons.:hate-shocked::dunno::nonofinger::heehee:
     
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    • Jasmine star

      Jasmine star Gardener

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      My 2 little go to books :biggrin:
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      • ARMANDII

        ARMANDII Low Flying Administrator Staff Member

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        :love30::thumbsup:
         
      • Fat Controller

        Fat Controller 'Cuddly' Scottish Admin! Staff Member

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        • Nikolaos

          Nikolaos Super Gardener

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          You couldn't have picked a better one, FC! ;):biggrin:

          Nick
           
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          • Nikolaos

            Nikolaos Super Gardener

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            My Top 5 and a couple of honourable mentions...

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/RSPB-Gardening-Wildlife-Adrian-Thomas/dp/1472938577

            My main read ATM, I refer to it every day! Covers so many types of wildlife!

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/British-Wild-Flowers-photographic-Complete/dp/0007236840

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/Gardeners-Guide-Growing-Hardy-Geraniums/dp/0715300148

            This is a brilliant book for lovers of the genus and packs so much useful information into 150 pages!

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/RHS-Encyclopedia-Garden-Plants-Encyclopedias/dp/1405332964

            Excellent reference books.

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cottage-Gardeners-Companion-Seasonal-Plantings/dp/0715300202#:~:text=OK-,The Cottage Gardener's Companion: A Seasonal Guide to Plants & Plantings,1993&text=This is a guide to,a garden of any size.

            I love this one, picked it up from a local charity shop for 50p. I suffered from OCD (still do, but to a far slighter extent) and the loose, naturalistic style of cottage gardening has been a huge factor in terms of helping me overcome it, believe it or not, because it's such an antidote to the compulsion for symmetry and equidistance that sufferers are inclined to. So liberating! :) Amazing what horticulture does for your mental health, there's nothing like it, I swear! :biggrin:

            First honourable mention is the first gardening book I ever owned, a gift from my Nan. She was a lovely grandma, the sort that would do her best to encourage you whenever you showed the slightest interest in anything constructive (she bought me the Collins Native British Plants guide a few years later.)

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/Gardening-at-Longmeadow-Monty-Don/dp/1849903786

            That was my Christmas gift from her in 2012, she wrote the date on the front page, it's nice to have a record of when I first developed an interest in the subject. :smile:

            This other honourable mention isn't just about the book, but having a sense of 'completeness' and linking two of my passions, Antiquities and Horticulture. I collect/study ancient pottery and bought this Iron Age Cypriot piece (the one on the right) a few years ago which was formerly in the collection of the botanist. It just seemed fitting to also have a book by him. :)

            https://www.amazon.co.uk/Concise-Flowers-Britain-Paperback-Reference/dp/0192825615

            Nick

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            • NigelJ

              NigelJ Total Gardener

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              When I started gardening it was all books and so I have a fair old collection, including the RHS Encyclopedia of Practical Gardening, which could be bought in separate sections as need and finance dictated.
              Also have Botany for Gardeners by B Capon and Applied Principles of Horticultural Science, then there are couple of Flora of various places, picked up in second hand book shops. Books on specific plant types/genera so several books on bulbs, Yeo on Hardy Geraniums and Clebsch on Salvias.
              For more relaxing reading, I have several books by Christopher Lloyd, a collection of essays from Hortus and The English Gardener by Cobbett.
              I mustn't forget the Hillier's Manual, must I.
              I can generally find a book on most plant topics and most people probably think I have too many, but they are all used to varying degrees also a lot of them have been and are carted out into the greenhouse/garden from time to time.
              I do use the internet a lot these days, however the information out there is of mixed quality, a lot is not relevant to the UK even if interesting. Pictures from general sites, social media are often mislabelled, colours and quality can leave a lot to be desired. Specific topic sites are generally good though, the Alpine Garden Society, The Scottish Rock Garden Club, Pacific Bulb Society, The Cyclamen Society for example also Trees and Shrubs Online is useful. However sometimes the sites I bookmarked years ago have gone with no trace. Whereas train tickets from 20+years ago are still in place indicating a page of interest.
              Books are useful for confirmation, looking up several things and for comparison.
               
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              • noisette47

                noisette47 Total Gardener

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                Ditto Nigel's list..especially Christopher Lloyd and RHS. Peter Thompson 'Creative Propogation' Not a book I own, but regularly withdrew from local library..'The Sex Life of Plants '. :-) The list of 'go to' books has changed over the years. The Hessayon 'Expert' series was wonderful when starting out. Then there's Beverly Nicholls just for light relief :-)
                 
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                • NigelJ

                  NigelJ Total Gardener

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                  @noisette47 fully agree about the Peter Thompson book; I have a copy and use it regularly.
                  Should also have mentioned Buried Treasures by Janis Ruksans about his bulb collecting journeys, useful tips as well.
                  Pruning Trees and Shrubs by Tony Kiskham, useful as it covrs some unusual genera.
                   
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                  • JR

                    JR Chilled Gardener

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                    3 favorites,
                    'Gardening for all' is a 1980 vintage that helped me a lot in my early endeavours.
                    Geoffs 'Year in your Garden' is superbly photographed, and is written with organic methods years before others got on board.
                     

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                    • Mike Allen

                      Mike Allen Total Gardener

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                      May I first of all, thank my Hon friend Armandii for setting up this thread. My apologies to JR about starting the thought in the wrong place. I know now't about all this techie stuff.

                      It's rewarding to see many have already contributed, by showing off their libraries. Valerie once asked me, why I needed, yet another book on whatever plant, tree etc. I then had the task of explaining that, despite having expanded my interest in natural history, especially in fauna & flora, and experienced my professional training etc. I always found delight in reading the experiences of others, including the accounts by plant hunters and the like. So as time has passed. I have IMO built up a deeper understanding of the plant world, but also a much more serious appreciation of the benefits, and delights of gardening.
                       
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                      • Mike Allen

                        Mike Allen Total Gardener

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                        Nigel. Did you mean, Tony Kirkham. He's at Kew and recently was awarded the VMH by the RHS.
                         
                      • Mike Allen

                        Mike Allen Total Gardener

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                        I have a mixed library when it comes to gardening books. Very few are written by popular gardeners of the day. I have a couple written by Peter Thoday, the uni lecturer from the series, 'The Victorian Gardener'. I have several what I call cheapies, that consentrate on a few plants etc. I have to admit. Books written by people I know, of course manage to be squeezed onto the book shelves. Readers Digest, luv em or hate em, produced some great books. Their encyclopedia of gardening, is a book I still often refer to. I knew many of the contributors. Having been a Fellow of the RHS since the late 50's, I have of course got many of their publications.

                        When we used to go away to the New Forest, I would take a few books, plus a cheapy microscope. I used very much a collection of books, plants, animals etc. These books were publiched by Octopus. Fabulous books. The authors were from Eastern Europe.

                        Then during my study of botany and horticultural sciences. I purchased some, what to me were very expensive books. Subjects such as Alpines, by Will Ingwersen. Primulas by John Blanchard and many many others. Also being associated with The RBG Kew & The Natural History Museum, I tend to spend out on specialised books, usually of a high cost. I could go on and on listing out authors and titles.

                        Yes, I agree that the intervention of the internet has in many ways made studying so much easier, nevertheless in many respects, and especially in my own case. To have the book ready at hand, really is a blessing. However with all the books etc. To get to where I have reached. Practical effort is also required. Please continue to enjoy your hobby, profession.
                         
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                        • JR

                          JR Chilled Gardener

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                          Sometimes only a specialised book is good enough.
                          My 'Cacti and succulents' by John Ellis is essential to keeping my collection healthy.
                          Which reminds me, i should repot them soon, I've got 18 of them in the conservatory so it'll be out with the leather gloves.
                           
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                          • Tinkerbelle61

                            Tinkerbelle61 Happiest Outdoors!

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                            Just ordered, looking forward to immersing myself in this book, just dipping my toe in the propagation world :)

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