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The Vegetable Gardener's Container Bible: How to Grow a Bounty of Food in Pots, Tubs, and Other Containers Paperback – March 2, 2011


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The Vegetable Gardener's Container Bible: How to Grow a Bounty of Food in Pots, Tubs, and Other Containers + The Vegetable Gardener's Bible + All New Square Foot Gardening, Second Edition: The Revolutionary Way to Grow More In Less Space
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC (March 2, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1603429751
  • ISBN-13: 978-1603429757
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.6 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,580 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Anyone can grow, harvest, and enjoy homegrown veggies, even without a yard, bestselling garden guru Smith persuasively argues as he presents his step-by-step approach to container gardening. A garden of containers�pots, buckets, found objects�can stand alone or complement an earth garden, with some advantages, including ease of tending, portability, and fewer insect and disease problems. From soil formulas and layouts for three-container gardens on small balconies and porches to transforming five-gallon plastic buckets into self-watering containers, developing artful arrangements, and pruning, Smith�s �bible� will encourage many new vegetable growers. Useful tips for hanging containers to maximize use of vertical space on patios, grouping plants of similar mature sizes and growth rates, and using organic controls are presented as attractive endeavors, beautifully documented in numerous full-color, full-page photos. With an index, suggested reading list, average last-frost dates and hardiness zone maps, and listings of suppliers, Smith�s practical, assuring, timely, and handsomely produced how-to will see brisk traffic. --Whitney Scott --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

 "With detailed, illustrated advice on selecting and retrofitting containers, cultivation, efficient maintenance, and design plans to pull it all together, Smith's latest guide provides everything needed to grow a bounty of home-grown vegetables."
(Booklist)

"Anyone can grow, harvest, and enjoy homegrown veggies, even without a yard, best-selling garden guru Smith persuasively argues as he presents his step-by-step approach to container gardening...Smith's practical, assuring, timely, and handsomely produced how-to will see brisk traffic."
(Publisher's Weekly)

"With detailed, illustrated advice on selecting and retrofitting containers, cultivation, efficient maintenance, and design plans to pull it all together, Smith's latest guide provides everything needed to grow a bounty of home-grown vegetables."

More About the Author

Edward C. Smith is the author of Incredible Vegetables from Self-Watering Containers. He tends a garden of over 1,500 square feet filled with raspberries, blueberries, flowers, herbs, and nearly 100 varieties of vegetables, including some heirlooms, in his home state of Vermont.

Customer Reviews

Very easy to follow.
Sharron Kaplan
This book has answered all her questions on how to get started and so much more.
Jill Peck
Great book for anyone who is wanting to container garden.
Dejacrew423

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

90 of 91 people found the following review helpful By E. Tracy on March 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been gardening seriously for the past couple of years and really got interested in containers last year. I have been asking myself a lot of questions about container gardening, mainly about the nature of the soil to use for pots and I have always wondered if I could reuse potting soil. I have made my share of mistakes (buying lousy pptting soil, for one, or not fertilizing enough) but I have really been craving a seasoned gardener's advice. I already owned the The Vegetable Gardener's Bible (10th Anniversary Edition) from the same author and McGee & Stuckey's Bountiful Container: Create Container Gardens of Vegetables, Herbs, Fruits, and Edible Flowers. Both were great but the former was really focused on raised beds (which is fine) and the latter lacked pictures and specific guidance. I appreciated that the authors of the Bountiful Container leave it to me to decide whether I want to grow organic or not but sometimes you just need somebody to tell you what works!

I liked the Vegetable Gardener's Container Bible the moment I put my hands on the book. It is abundantly illustrated (a huge help for a novice gardener like me!!), from pictures of containers with mature plants, to pictures of good quality soil (so you know what to look for) and how to make your own potting mix (loved the advice to mix it all in a rain barrow!).
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43 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Comfort Creature on March 5, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a great book for learning about vegetable container gardening, but if you already own Edward C Smith's Incredible Vegetables from Self-Watering Containers, there's no need to buy this too. This is basically a rewrite, 9 pages longer. Had I realized before purchasing, I would have bought his Vegetable Gardener's Bible instead, to improve my earth garden. Still, this is a very useful book for container gardening. Read either one and improve your vegetable crops this year! Edward C Smith's books are essential to my library when I make my yearly garden plan.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Hampton on March 31, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of the best books I own. It's not only chock full of information, I like the way it's organized. There is a large section of general information with clear and colorful subject titles with a wide range of information. About half the book is dedicated to individual plants with information on choosing a pot, planting it, protecting from bugs, raising the plant and harvesting it. There are many, many photographs a good hardiness zone map and a very efficient index. I can't wait for warmer weather!
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By KH on May 24, 2012
Format: Paperback
This is my first year with vegetable gardening, and I live in an apartment that has a landlord-maintained backyard. So anything I planted had to be in containers. I'd read Smith's previous book on vegetable gardening and was very impressed with his detailed, practical and comprehensive knowledge. This book is a bit more narrow in focus - less discussion of compost and root structure, which I think would be as helpful here as it was in his previous book, and some unnecessary repetition of factoids, like how much water a tomato needs in the summer. But I think it's still the best container gardening book I've read, and I've referenced it almost daily as I've planned and built my first garden.

He does strongly recommend self-watering containers for pretty much all vegetables, almost sadly admitting that some herbs do better in traditional pots. I would call this bias, but I think he offers convincing arguments for them. To get another perspective, I bought Bountiful Containers as well, which only briefly mentions self-watering containers. But I found its information to be a lot more vague and broad, with no mention of how much water and sunlight some plants will need. Much more of a "plant it and see" approach. Where Bountiful Container is good for inspiring someone to garden, with a light amount of information for a broad variety of plants, Bible is geared to making that garden successful, with deep, detailed information about fewer, more common plants.

I definitely appreciate his section on how to build your own containers, because commercially available ones are mostly too small. However, it does assume a certain level of handyman skills, tools and materials. Some apartment dwellers may have a drill, but how many have a hacksaw, caulking gun, and lengths of PVC tubing?
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By YiPease on January 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
I bought this book and The Vegetable Gardeners Bible by the same author. I found them both very useful. This book gave me ideas I didn't think would work. Like my fingerling red potatoes grown in a big square planter! We had so many potatoes, they literally were growing out of the dirt! Harvest was so easy! Turn the pot over and pick through the dirt...DONE! We grew two planters of Potatoes and 2 of Tomatoes. My Tomatoe plants were 7 feet tall and had stalks that were 5 inches in dia. They were Monsters! They were so heavily laden with fruit, they broke their cages twice! Now these plants were just plain old Heirloom tomatoe plants, nothing special! The fruit was huge and numerous. My secret came from a planting tip in the book, and man did it work! Nope, I'll not give it away! Buy the book. Buy both...you won't be sorry. Will you use all the info? Well like most "how to" books, probably not. But if you have a small yard or live in an apartment or condo, you can have lots of fun with your storage container turned farm! 2012 I am expanding my garden and the number of containers I use. Oh, another piece of wisdom from this book, I planted my lettuce in "over the rail" window boxes (2 boxes, 2 plants each) and have been eating off them all winter long. I just kept covering them or bringing them in when it froze or got too cold out. I have had home grown lettuce all winter long off 4 plants that just kept growing(that secret I got out of the books as well). I finally left them out to die when it snowed last week as I have plans for the boxes this spring as well.

The authors ideas are simple, inexpensive and easy. You can adopt your own container plans like I did.
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