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am 2. April 1997
This is a good book for the small gardener. It does have a lot of information but at the same time it is lacking. The old classic of mine is worn with years of consulting. I was excited to get the new one but was really disappointed. I live far South and the new book seems to be written almost exclusivly for cooler climes. There is no information on the exotics fruits as was previously included. Many seemingly essential topics are also missing. The old had loads of practical pointers and had the ring of experience. The new reads like a vague tech manual. A good book for the beginner still, but try and find a copy of the old one first
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am 29. April 1997
"The organization of this book reflects the way you garden," says this encyclopedia's
introduction, under the sub-heading "How to Use This Book". "We've grouped information into useful, complete entries that will provide all you need to know about a particular topic, rather than spreading out facts in thousands of short entries." A simple statement, it is not fully appreciated until you go searching for something in this book and find what you're looking for in a matter of seconds. Since topics are arranged
alphabetically, if you can spell it, you can find it. Want to know how and when (among other things) to plant your corn? You'll find it between Coreopsis and Cornus. Need help with organic pest management? Look for it after Organic Matter.

The editors feel that 26 of the entries form the core of this extensive resource and can be
divided into four categories: Gardening Technique, Organic Garden Management, Food Crops and Ornamental Plants. For a beginner such as myself, I found these fundamentals extremely helpful in outlining the basics of gardening. I was easily able to apply the knowledge gained in these fundamentals to particular entries, such as roses or radishes.

Sidebars offered with many of the entries spark ideas that the average gardener may not already be taking advantage of. For example, when I was reading the Bean topic, I found an interesting inset on growing fresh sprouts right in your kitchen. And under Herbs are several helpful side entries including herbs commonly used as home health remedies.

Illustrated for clarity in all the right places, this book is sure to become one of my favorite year-round reference guides.
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am 23. März 2000
I have poked through endless shelves of gardening books, seeking the one, complete gardening book that I could use as a reference for everything! I was looking for one that would tell not only how to plant and grow things, but also how to harvest and prepare the products. How should you cut your asparagus so as not to damage the crowns? How do you dry your herbs? This was one of the few gardening books that addressed this aspect.
This was not its only outstanding characteristic. Not only does this book address the vegetable garden, it also tackles anything the home gardener is likely to face. Houseplants, trees and shrubs, ornamental plants as well as productive plants. It covers general topics, such as crop rotation, in addition to specific plants. And it is all arranged alphabetically, and nicely cross-indexed, so that you can nearly always find what you need.
The first and second time I bought this book, it was as a gift. I finally had to get it for myself as well. It is the best I have found so far.
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am 5. Juni 2000
I've been running an organic gardening web site since 1995 and hardly a day has passed that I don't reach behind me (without looking now) and pull this book out. Many of my readers have bought this book on my suggestion and they are all happy with it too.
I like the way the book is organized, and I really like the way they stress soil health as an important component to organic gardening. As some of the reviews have noted, this book leans to cold climates, but that's no big deal, really. The information translates well for those of us lucky enough to be planting two gardens a year.
This is, first and foremost, a reference book, and a damn fine place to start....
supak.com
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am 14. Juli 1998
An excellent overview of soil, plants, and pest and disease control. Some entries (such as peppers or mushrooms) are terse or absent, but a more definative guide would be ten volumes this size and unaffordable. Other entries [such as cane/bramble fruits and asparagus] are so well illustrated that I intend to jump into them next season, possibly without even seeking further texts. I purchased my copy straight from Rodale - without the discount from Amazon - so your copy will hold even greater value. :} It does seem geared more towards cooler climates, but since I get the benifit of a longer growing season, I can give the Zone 4 folk the textual bias!
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am 2. Mai 2000
Like cookbooks, there are hundreds of gardening books. Where to begin? These 690 pages will answer 95 percent of your questions. After gardening for decades I still find myself taking a quick peek here before preparing soil for a specific plant. Four big categories: gardening technique, organic garden management, food crops, ornamental plants. Hundreds of specific entries quickly found. This is your basic gardening reference book.
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am 8. Dezember 1999
This book is the most basic, and most frequently used, gardening book I own. Rodale uses layman's terms which the beginning or expert gardener will readily understand. The text is comprehensive in its plant listings. I use it all the time!
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