The corn is tall; the mosquitoes, plenty, the weeds–for the moment– mulched and quiescent.  If you’re lucky enough to have a cool breeze or the air-conditioned equivalent, consider doing what I’m doing, dip into some glossy reference books to figure out what I screwed up and when.  Now don’t get me wrong, there’ve been some successes.  That gorgeous pepper! (One.)  The tomatoes. (Almost.) The couple of servings of bok choy and five blueberries. (So many weeks ago….)

Dig in and learn.  Or, do the other thing that I do, read a bunch of stuff, get inspired, overdo it, forget the lessons learned from overdoing it during the long winter, read a bunch of stuff and repeat.

Or not.*



American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America; Michelle Obama; Crown Publishers; New York, NY; 2012.**

Grow It, Cook It: Simple Gardening Projects and Delicious Recipes; Jill Bloomfield; DK Publishing; New York, NY; 2008.**

The Kitchen Gardener’s Handbook, Jennifer R. Bartley, Timber Press, Portland, OR, 2011.

What’s Wrong With My Vegetable Garden?: 100% Organic Solutions for All Your Vegetables, from Artichokes to Zucchini, David Deardorff and Kathryn Wadsworth, Timber Press, Portland, OR, 2011.

Wildlife Gardening: how to Bring Birds and Bugs to Your Backyard; Martyn Cox; DK Publishing; New York, NY; 2009.**


General interest:

The Dirty Life: On Farming, Food, and Love; Kristin Kimball; Scribner; New York, NY; 2010.

How Carrots Won the Trojan War: Curious (but True) Stories of Common Vegetables; Rebecca Rupp; Storey Publishing; North Adams, MA; 2011

Planet Chicken: The Shameful Story of the Bird on Your Plate; Hattie Ellis; Sceptre; London, UK; 2007.


For reference materials on ducks, see blog post here.


*Somehow, I think 2013 is going to be the year I learn from my mistakes.  Of course, everything will probably be completely different and I will just make new mistakes.

**With emphasis or section on children & gardens


Copyright 2012, Lori Fontanes