Best buy books!

Good morning everyone! I am an immensely keen gardener and would place myself in the competent bracket however I am always keen to learn more. Particularly identifying plants, understanding their preferred habitat (soil type, shade/semi shade etc), pruning requirements and I am looking for a book which may cater for this and perhaps even a bit more. Visual aids a must! I have spent most of my working life jumping on trains at 6.00 in the morning to travel into London and finally said enough is enough, handed in my notice and now work for a small local garden maintenance firm and I love it! I need to read, practice and study so I can achieve my main goal which is to become my own boss one day. So, in summary, what would you recommend as good books to start with? Thanks in advance!


  • rosemummyrosemummy Posts: 1,983

    hi, buds i'm a newbie really, everything i've learned is from here, gw programme, and the newish alan titchmarsh 'how to' books, got 5 in series, sit and read when little ones feeding / napping i think they're excellent really easy to follow

  • BamboogieBamboogie Posts: 239

    You need the gardener's bible - RHS A to Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,234

    There's a whole range of books by these 2, perennials, annuals, bulbs etc. Good illustrations and where they come from which gives a good indication of what they need.

    Also Christopher Lloyd, earlier books rather than later, very informative and a good read.

    and Bamboogie's RHS book


  • philippa smith2philippa smith2 Posts: 6,170

    To Bamboogies suggestion I would definitely add the RHS Encyclopaedia of Gardening too...........immensely useful.

  • BookertooBookertoo Posts: 1,306

    Maybe a good idea is to go to your public library and look at their books.  Once you have found something that appeals to you in its style and content, then it is worth buying your own - or asking for it as a gift come birthdays or whatever.  Many gardening books are very expensive, and some just not suitable for everyone - as yet, libraries are free - and if we don't use them they will disappear.  

  • Hi Buds, I am a newcomer like many on here and I have got some of my best books from our local charity shops - including RHS, Readers' Digest and Dr Hessayon's stuff - usually for about 50p or £1 each. Newer books such as some of the ones mentioned by others above here have been on my birthday and Christmas lists and I too recommend the RHS Encyclopedia of Garden Plants - I read it nearly every night like a saddo! Enjoy and good luck - I admire and envy your career change, wish I had the courage! image

  • artjakartjak Posts: 4,168

    The RHS Encyclopedia; 2 volumes, keeps my biceps in trim as I consult them often. The only prob; new plants are being developed all the time. So when I go mad and buy something; the actual plant is not in the book, only it's relatives.

    I'm sure some enterprising 14 year old will develop an 'app' that constantly updates the RHS plant booksimage

    For veg; 'The vegetable and plant expert'

    For lawns; get a husband and let him deal with it! Otherwise have a tiny lawn.image

  • mike wmike w Posts: 43

    I agree with Bamboogie the R.H.S Dictionary A to Z  is the ultimate reference book.If you are serious, worth the money.

    Mike W




  • Some fantastic advice everyone! Much appreciated! The RHS encyclopedia sounds like a must, as does a visit to a few charity shops and our local library!

  • philippa smith2philippa smith2 Posts: 6,170

    Good for you Buds......both for your career change and for using the libraryimage

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