Gardening Books for Children
Written by Noreen Greimann
Last month, I shared our favorite Spring books with you. And today I’m back to give you a list of our favorite gardening books.
I have been teaching a gardening class for children for over 6 years and have read or at least browsed through most books on that topic. The best ones quickly rose to the surface and have found their way into our library because of their story and illustrations. I hope you will find them as enjoyable as we have.
Our Favorite Gardening Books
How Groundhog’s Garden Grew by Lynne Cherry – Ages 3+
When Squirrel catches Groundhog munching in his neighbor’s garden, she decides to teach him how to grown his own food. First they collect seeds, then they plant, water and weed and Groundhog learns about the friends and foes of the insect world. In the end, everyone gathers for a scrumptious feast. The illustrations are not only detailed but also accurate, which is not always the case in children’s gardening books. Many pages feature a border even more detailed illustrations of seeds, sprouts and fruits. This is the one book I use every year with the children in my gardening class and it always brings all of us so much joy.
The Curious Garden by Peter Brown – Ages 4+
Liam lives in a big grey city until….one day he discovers a small patch of grass and a small flower on an old train track. He knows just what to do. Every day, he waters and cares for the small patch of green and day by day it grows bigger and bigger. Before long, the big grey city turns into a lush green oasis…all because of Liam. The enchanting story will have you and your child looking at that little flower growing in the sidewalk crack in a whole new way.
A Seed is Sleepy by Dianna Aston – Ages 3+
This was the first Dianna Aston book I discovered years ago and we have since fallen in love with all of them. The book is filled with stunning illustrations of seeds you find in your home to seeds from far away places. From the tiniest to the largest seeds on earth, your child can follow a seed’s journey as it gets carried away by the wind, gets stuck on your shoe or travels the oceans. And one page shows the transformation from seed to mature plant for a variety of seeds. You really can’t go wrong with a Dianna Aston book as there is always so much to discover and learn.
A Perfect Day for Digging by Cari Best – Ages 3+
Spring is here and Nell and her dog Rusty can’t wait to get dirty and start digging in the garden. While the flowers in the pots patiently wait to be planted, Nell and Rusty discover more than just dirt as they dig, dig, dig. Soon, Nell’s friend Norman, who had no desire to get dirty can’t resist and joins the fun.
Roots, Boots, Buckets and Shoots by Sharon Lovejoy – Ages 3+
This is one of those books that you can page through every year and always discover something new. It is full of ideas for theme gardens such as a pizza patch, sunflower houses and even a moon garden. The instructions are straight forward and the beautiful watercolor illustrations make it such a joy to read and look at. My kids love paging through the book and picking out new ideas to try.
I also recommend Sharon Lovejoy’s books Toad Cottages and Shooting Stars for more garden related activities (it’s written for grandparents to use with their grandchildren but of course can be used by parents as well) and Trowel and Error, which is full of gardening remedies and tricks.
And last but not least, our favorite seed company, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, puts together a stunning seeds catalog that resembles a coffee table book more than a traditional seed catalog. My kids love paging through it and when we are done with it, they often cut out their favorite picture and use them in crafts or create collages.