Book Review: My Backyard Garden

This kids’ gardening manual is a big step up from the beginning reader’s In My Garden.  Its picture-book format and detailed illustrations make the basics of starting a vegetable garden accessible to kids.  It provides all the basic principles and practices they need, and lays out a month-by-month guide to success in a starter garden.

The book is full of good illustrations that enliven the high-density text.  These include a diagram explaining how pollinated flowers produce fruit and a diagram of two sample garden plots, which are reiterated with different plantings through the growing season.  There is also a simple soil test to try out and directions for building a compost heap, an explanation of how to schedule planting using a frost-date chart, some drawings of garden plants (good, bad and ugly) in varying stages of maturity, and a chart naming garden pests and how to combat them.

This attractive, accessible guide provides almost enough information for an enterprising older child to start a garden project without adult help, although a more encyclopedic resource is likely to be needed before the project is complete.  If read aloud in small portions to early-elementary audience it can be an excellent tool to help explain gardening practices.

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Publication Information: Lerner, Carol. My Backyard Garden. HarperCollins. 1998. ISBN: 0688147569.
Categories: 4 Stars, Age 08-12, Books Children Love
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Posted on April 12, 2012

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