How Does Your Garden Grow?

From Containers to Outdoor Oases

By Jennifer Schultz-Angoli, Collection Services Development Librarian

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people rediscovered—or discovered for the first time—the many benefits of gardening. 

Gardening can relieve stress, promote better sleep and provide healthy exercise.  Best of all, a great garden doesn’t require a lot of space or time. The library has plenty of books to provide assistance and encouragement to get started. 

Small space and low maintenance

Constrained by a lack of space or time?  Don’t despair!  Container gardening and raised bed gardening are top trends, but there are many other creative ways to garden.  Try these books if short on space, short on time, or don’t want to spend hours planning, digging and maintaining a garden.  

Crops in Tight Spots: Grow Amazing Fruit and Vegetables Wherever You Live by Alex Mitchell 

Spouts, Shoots & Microgreens: Tiny Plants to Grow and Eat in Your Home Kitchen by Lina Wallentinson

Raised Bed Gardening for Beginners: Everything You Need to Know to Start and Sustain a Thriving Garden by Tammy Wylie

Environmentally friendly gardening

Gardeners aren’t only interested in creating lovely landscapes. They’re also searching for ways their gardens can be environmentally friendly, including an emphasis on native gardening. Gardening is a great way to become personally involved in helping the ecosystem. These books will help start a “green” garden: 

Grow Great Vegetables in Virginia by Ira Wallace  

Nature’s Best Hope: A New Approach to Conservation That Starts in Your Yard by Douglas W. Tallamy 

The Southeast Native Plant Primer: 225 Plants for an Earth Friendly Garden by Larry Mellichamp 

Planting for pollinators and wildlife

According to the 2020 National Gardening Survey conducted by the National Gardening Association, one in four Americans bought a plant because it benefitted wildlife. With increased awareness of the importance of pollinators, many gardeners are creating gardens to aid in the conservation movement. Learn how to incorporate conservation into your garden with these books: 

National Wildlife Federations: Attracting Birds, Butterflies and Other Backyard Wildlife by David Mizejewski

Pollinator Gardening for the South: Creating Sustainable Habitats by Danesha Seth Carley

Wildlife Garden: Create a Home for Garden-Friendly Animals, Insects and Birds by Ursula Kopp

Garden by color 

Rather than have just random plants and flowers growing, some gardeners are planning bold and beautiful gardens. If a garden with “wow factor” sounds appealing, check out these titles: 

Color-Rich Gardening for the South: A Guide for All Seasons by Roxann Ward 

The Gardener’s Book of Color by Andrew Lawson

The Winterthur Garden Guide: Color for All Seasons by Linda Eirhart


Houseplants have increased in popularity, in part due to Instagram and other social media. They reduce stress, purify air and bring a sense of the outdoors into indoor space. Whether your living room is already filled with foliage or you are just now jumping on this trend, these books will set you on the right path: 

My Houseplant Changed My Life: Green Well-Being for the Great Indoors by David Domoney 

Tiny Plants: Discover the Joys of Growing and Collecting Itty-Bitty Houseplants by Leslie F. Halleck

Tropical Plants and How to Love Them: Building a Relationship with Heat-Loving Plants When You Don’t Live in the Tropics by Marianne Willburn

Outdoor space for entertaining

With more time at home, redesigning garden or yard spaces to make outdoor time more appealing is increasingly popular. For ideas to spruce up an outdoor space, try these titles: 

The Art of Outdoor Living: Gardens for Entertaining Family and Friends by Scott Shrader

New Decorated Garden: Transform Your Outdoor Space Into a Haven of Calm and Tranquility by Elspeth Thompson

Outdoor Design: Projects and Plans for a Stylish Garden by Matt Keightley

Gardening for wellbeing

The health benefits of gardening are well-known; people garden to relieve stress and have more control over their produce supply, among other things. To explore the wellness aspect of gardening, add these titles to your list: 

The Kitchen Garden by Alan Buckingham

Your Indoor Herb Garden: Growing and Harvesting Herbs at Home by D.J. Herda

Your Well-Being Garden: How to Make Your Garden Good for You by Alistair Griffiths

For additional gardening resources, browse the shelves in the gardening section, 635 and garden design in section 712 or request assistance from the reference desk by calling 540.422.8500 ext.6. 


Your library is here for you!

Despite COVID-19 restrictions, there are plenty of ways to enjoy library resources.  

Pickup books and materials using contact-free curbside service during regular library hours

Connect with other book-lovers in one of our book clubs’ virtual meetings

Access wifi round the clock outside all library buildings using the passwords posted on library doors

Enjoy online services like e-books, e-audio, e-magazines and streaming services 24/7 with a library card

Get customized reading lists based on your reading interests and preference using BookMatch 

Get help from reference staff online or via phone during regular business hours

Learn a new language

Make informed purchase decisions with Consumer Reports Online

Log on to a live online story time with your child

Don’t have a library card? Apply online at and start enjoying the many resources and services available from your local Fauquier Public Library! 


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