Just a note to advise you that Canada's most successful (and perhaps most practical) book on container gardening was republished late last year. It has received excellent reviews from knowledgeable garden writers from coast to coast. The book is Gardening Off The Ground, by Art C. Drysdale. It is available from southern Ontario (and Quebec) locations of Sheridan Nurseries, Humber Nurseries, the Civic Garden Centre, Garden Possabilities in Newmarket, and in Ottawa from the Book Bank (2 Beaverbrook Road) in Kanata. Or, it may be ordered directly from me. Cost is $23.49 including shipping, handling and GST. EMail me at email@example.com for more info.
Most people in Canada will recognize me from The Weather Network's Lawn and Garden Reports which run every of every day (at 23 minutes after the hour) from mid March to Mid November, also a two-hour gardening radio programe on Toronto radio station TALK 640.
by Donna Dawson
Have you ever felt that just because you lived in an apartment or town house you couldn't have a garden - well - this book will not only show you how to have one, but will tell you what to plant, how to take care of it and also gives you good sources of information on where to find supplies. What is enjoyable about Gardening Off The Ground is that people with gardens in ground can also benefit from reading it. How many of us with gardens also have decks, or small areas that could benefit from a few containers of strategically placed plants to brighten up a spot.
While container gardening is different, the rewards are the same and Art shows us the types of soil to use to give your plants the most benefit. Ordinary garden soil just won't do...
Lighting is discussed - because available sunlight hours will determine what you can grow and also discussed is what effect will wind play on your balcony garden and how to minimize it. Another major concern is watering...this book goes into great detail about solving these concerns and achieving success in balcony gardening.
Art gives us a listing of the plants you can use, how to prepare them for planting, how to stake and what you need to know if you want to start them from seed, and even how to take cuttings to increase your plants. There is a great quick reference letting you know what each plant requires for sunlight, and what plants like shade in each of the categories of annuals, perennials,vines, evergreen and deciduous trees and shrubs.
There are also some beautiful colour photos to give you ideas for your own garden. Art also discusses vegetables, herbs and fruits that you can grow in containers. There is a great hint in the book on planting your tomatoes....You can have you own wonderful salad fixings fresh everyday...and herbs. What about an apple tree? or your own strawberries? Have you considered evergreens. Art will tell you what you can grow and how to protect it over winter. I never knew that there were so many shrubs that could be planted in containers, even roses can be enjoyed if you have enough sun.
Bulbs are also discussed. There is something magical about those beauties coming up in spring...Water gardening basics..so you too, can have your own water garden complete with lilies - he even tells you how to overwinter your lilies and what types to buy and how to have a watergarden in the shade.
Art also discusses lighting your garden and using your indoor plants outside during the summer.
The last chapter deals with insect and disease control - yes it can happen. Art tells you what to look for and gives you preventative measures so you will have a healthy garden. As I mentioned earlier, at the back of the book is a great listing of sources of supplies as well as provincial associations ...one of the best I have seen in a while.
Art has devoted more than 3 decades to horticulture and presents us with a book that speaks to all of us who garden in containers. Make sure you check out our TV & Radio program listing to find out what time he is on in your area.
Gardening Off The Ground 23.49 includes packing, shipping and GST ISBN 0-9680930-0-0