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Kitchen Garden A to Z: Growing, Harvesting, Buying, Storing Hardcover – November 1, 2004


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Harry N. Abrams; First Edition edition (November 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0810955806
  • ISBN-13: 978-0810955806
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 0.8 x 13.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #220,932 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Mike McGrath, former editor-in-chief of Organic Gardening magazine, has his own program, "You Bet Your Garden," on National Public Radio. He lives in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania. Gordon Smith's photographs can be found in museums and private collections throughout the world.

Customer Reviews

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See all 8 customer reviews
Great info about storage, PH of the soil.
Tatyana Seamans
It also shows superb examples of beautiful and clever vegetable gardens above and beyond typical row-style.
A. Ryan
I think there is certainly something in the book for gardeners of every age and skill level.
Victoria Lynn

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Scott G on November 14, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An oversized volume that is well organized and has beautiful pictures; unfortunately, what it has for visual impact it sorely lacks in useful detail. The primary purpose for my purchasing the book were harvesting and storage options of vegatables. However for each plant covered, at best a sentence or two is offered. Best example of where it failed me - for carrots it offers 2 choices; refrigeration or long term storage buried in sand. No comment on canning, freezing, drying, etc -- and who in suburbia is going to have a box o' sand?

Other topics, garden design, tools, mulching are all treated on the same "high level" aspect. Its like reading a collection of highlights to chapters that somehow never made it to the printers.

While it might be useful for someone whose never worked in a garden before, or perhaps a child who is interested in learning about gardening, on the whole its little more than a well organized collection of interesting tidbits of knowledge. Its not worth the $45.00 cover charge in either case.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A. Ryan on August 29, 2005
Format: Hardcover
There is a place in my home for a coffee table book about gardening. It's on the coffee table, where it can be admired and browsed by family and visitors, or maybe just by me when I am in the mood to look at gorgeous pictures of garden produce and dream about next year's crop.

This book is obviously geared to the rank novice gardener (And where, I ask you, does it claim otherwise?). I am unlikely to use Kitchen Garden A to Z as a reference because I am an intermediate level home gardener who has managed to grow every category of vegetable and herb mentioned in this book. If I were a beginner, however, I would find this book to be indispensable for my starting information and pure inspiration to get going. It would be easy to find whatever I was looking for with the oversized page titles laid out A to Z, on the side edge, graphic-stylish. I would also be awed at the lovely diversity of tomatoes, melons, squash, etc. which I almost never see in my grocery store. The pictures are impeccable and artistically shot, and they feature several varieties and stages of growth for each crop being examined on the spread. The information is short and useful, but doesn't go into much detail; for instance, in the Pumpkin spread under "harvest" it simply says to leave the handle on, cut when the fruit is mature and let cure in the sun for a week. Nothing about thumbnail testing the shell first or whether it should cure on the ground or somewhere else, and if it can be left on the vine for awhile or not. Oh well, most people will do okay with this so I suppose one shouldn't get too picky about short text.

I am grateful that in the first section (which takes up nearly half the book) there is more explanation about how to garden generally and an emphasis on how to do it organically.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Victoria Lynn on November 14, 2004
Format: Hardcover
As a home gardener and artist, I am delighted and inspired by Kitchen Garden A to Z, which is filled with easy to access "how-to" information and beautiful illustrations. Having heard Mike McGrath on public radio, I find his down-to-earth enthusiasm and knowledge about organic gardening as welcoming as ever. He's written a great reference book that's clear, practical and to-the-point. He doesn't read like an encyclopedia or a scientific journal, but rather, he sounds like the gardener next door who's been there, done that, and wants you to succeed. The wisdom of his experience shows. Of course, the vegetables in the beautiful photographs are a feast for the eyes - something to see now, and (hopefully) grow later.

I think there is certainly something in the book for gardeners of every age and skill level. My sister, who has a lot of vegetable-loving animals in her yard, found an answer to her prayers in the section on container gardening. The information on how to prevent "damping off" and leggy seedlings has given me the courage to start planting from seed again. And when I showed the book to my 87-year old mother, who knows her way around the kitchen, she wanted a copy of the "Storage Basics at a Glance" summery page for her very own.

The book has been wonderful gift. You may discover, as I have, that Kitchen Garden A to Z works beautifully both on the coffee table and the back porch.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I would recommend this book. It explains most known vegetables and more. It talks in basic terms for someone just starting out. It is also a beautiful book to put on a shelf.
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