I'm a big fan of Gayla Trail, author of You Grow Girl and now Grow Great Grub. My reasons for adoration are simple: She advocates paying lots of attention to soil health & fertility, she makes gardening both young & hip, and she truly believes anyone can garden anywhere.
Ahhhhh....music to my ears. Especially the "anyone can garden anywhere" part. There are many things that work in shade, scorching hot, drought, windy, wet and other conditions. Gardening, especially edible gardening, used to be such a part of our daily life. And now it's a past time often left for retired grannies or crazy cat ladies with piles of newspaper. Thankfully, I feel like this stereotype is slowly changing; I've noticed many Gen-X & Gen-Yers are showing a "budding" interest in how things grow. I mean, frankly, if I can grow plants, anyone can. I'm pretty lazy.
Her latest book really focuses on edible gardening and includes easy-to-understand sections on soil (how to have good soil, what to use in containers, how to increase fertility, etc.), profiles of edible plants (growing requirements), garden-related crafts and recipes. All of this is put into one beautiful, interesting and fun package. Love it.
So, I bought myself a copy. Most of the information isn't new to me, although she does have several recipes, crafts and general gardening ideas I am dying to try out. I would highly recommend this book for anyone just starting out with gardening in general (would be a great housewarming gift for new homeowners that have expressed an interested in edible or container gardening, for example) or maybe someone that has "gotten their feet wet" with a few vegetable crops and wants to expand their horizons.
This book has definitely rekindled my desire to work more edibles into my ornamental landscaping. If anything good has come from the series of Snowpocalypses that we had this year, it's that some seriously ugly bushes in my front yard got damaged beyond repair. I'm going to wait to see how the light is there over the next few months (I never bothered to notice before since the bushes were mature), and perhaps replace them with blueberries and raspberries.
A line of blueberry bushes would make a lovely hedge, don't you think? Would just need to net them somehow otherwise my over-zealous robins would eat them all out of spite for me!