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A Library Within This Book
on June 14, 2006
One of my most-used books; I'm buying this copy for a wedding. Two negatives -- The cost is high, and even as I wish for more color photographs, I ponder how much the price would rise with them. Also, as a new gardener, I struggled with five-syllable foreign terms and phrases. But he compensates well. After "an inoculant called rhizobium that colonizes the roots of leguminous plants", he says, "Pull up some bean plants. If you can see small pinkish white nodules on the roots" then it's okay. (p. 125)
The range of material is wide yet thorough. Can I grow peaches where I live? He compares 10 varieties, with limitations and virtues. He suggests alternate reading for each subject, and offers a capsule review (e.g., "A good one to browse in the library; only serious tree crops enthusiasts need own it." p. 219). The appendix seems all-encompassing to me, with an expansive index, recommended magazines and supportive organizations, mail order suppliers, & real recipes like "Chayote Parmigiana", with text on everything you'd EVER want to know about growing chayote for the dish, including Effort. (p. 300, 301)
Rosalind Creasy broke ground (ha!) promoting edibles in the landscape, and Kourik credits her. Her book has not been updated, however; this book remains timely.