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Gardening: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best kids books about gardening?

Claude Monet, the famous impressionist painter, said, ““My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece.”

Gardening teaches about patience, love, care, and transformation. In all of these books, readers young and old are reminded of the beauty that starts with a little seed and how some love and effort can make something extraordinary.

Top 10 Books About Gardening

#1
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The Secret Garden
Thoughts from The Goodfather
The Secret Garden is one of my favorite stories from my childhood. I love Mary's self discovery and her help to Colin and ultimately Mr. Craven along the way. I love the way she gains color in her cheeks as she experiences the joy of playing and working outside and nurturing a garden and befriending a robin, joys that Martha and Dickon help her discover. I love that she feels the happiness that comes as she moves from a very self-centered character to thinking of others and putting their needs and wellbeing above her own. She also is lovingly forthright and frank with Colin, which helped him develop, too.
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12
After losing her parents, young Mary Lennox is sent from India to live in her uncle’s gloomy mansion on the wild English moors. She is lonely and has no one to play with, but one day she learns of a secret garden somewhere in the grounds that no one is allowed to enter. Then Mary uncovers an old key in a flowerbed – and a gust of magic leads her to the hidden door. Slowly she turns the key and enters a world she could never have imagined.
#2
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When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree
Written by Jamie L. B. Deenihan & illustrated by Lorraine Rocha
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-8
"When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." In this imaginative take on that popular saying, a child is surprised to receive a lemon tree from Grandma for her birthday. After all, she DID ask for a new gadget! But when she follows the narrator's careful--and funny--instructions, she discovers that the tree might be exactly what she wanted after all.
#3
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How to Grow a Friend
Written & illustrated by Sara Gillingham
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3
A lovely metaphor teaches valuable lessons in how to treat others and make friendships blossom! Making a friend takes patience, care, and room to bloom--just like growing a flower. Soon your little gardeners will have their very own green thumbs for this most important of life skills.
#4
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The Night Gardener
Written & illustrated by Terry Fan and Eric Fan
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Everyone on Grimloch Lane enjoys the trees and shrubs clipped into animal masterpieces after dark by the Night Gardener, but William, a lonely boy, spots the artist, follows him, and helps with his special work.
#5
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Miss Rumphius
Written & illustrated by Barbara Cooney
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
A beloved classic is lovelier than ever! Barbara Cooney’s story of Alice Rumphius, who longed to travel the world, live in a house by the sea, and do something to make the world more beautiful, has a timeless quality that resonates with each new generation. The countless lupines that bloom along the coast of Maine are the legacy of the real Miss Rumphius, the Lupine Lady, who scattered lupine seeds everywhere she went. Miss Rumphius received the American Book Award in the year of publication. To celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of two-time Caldecott winner Barbara Cooney’s best-loved book, Viking has reoriginated the illustrations, going back to the original art to ensure state-of-the-art reproduction of Cooney’s exquisite artwork. The art for Miss Rumphius has a permanent home in the Bowdoin College Museum of Art.
#6
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Plant the Tiny Seed
Written & illustrated by Christie Matheson
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
This cute interactive book is fun because it has more then just pressing or tilting the book, you get to clap and wiggle your fingers (along with other fun tasks) to plant seeds and help them grow into beautiful flowers!
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
There is magic in every tiny seed. The seeds that come in little paper packets and those that fall from flowers and plants. In every garden and every flowerpot, magic can grow. With a little sunlight, a little water, and a little help from birds and worms and bees, a tiny seed sprouts, a plant grows, and a beautiful f lower blooms. There is magic in every tiny seed. And in this book, you become the magician. How? Press the seed into the ground, wiggle your fingers to add water, clap to bring the sun. And then . . .turn the page. What can grow from one tiny seed? Press, tap, wiggle, and jiggle to start the magic! Press the seed—don’t be shy! Wiggle your fingers to add some water. Clap your hands to bring the sun. Wow! A beautiful flower!
#7
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Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt
Written by Kate Messner & illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
I love this beautiful, unique look at a garden, as it shows what's happening above and below the ground and pairs it with sweet sentiments of gardening with family and creating something beautiful together. This book shows the efforts of diligent work, and it also shows the beauty in nature around us, both in plants and animals.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
In this exuberant and lyrical follow-up to the award-winning Over and Under the Snow, discover the wonders that lie hidden between stalks, under the shade of leaves . . . and down in the dirt. Explore the hidden world and many lives of a garden through the course of a year! Up in the garden, the world is full of green—leaves and sprouts, growing vegetables, ripening fruit. But down in the dirt exists a busy world—earthworms dig, snakes hunt, skunks burrow—populated by all the animals that make a garden their home.
#8
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The Curious Garden
Written & illustrated by Peter Brown
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5
One boy's quest for a greener world... one garden at a time. While out exploring one day, a little boy named Liam discovers a struggling garden and decides to take care of it. As time passes, the garden spreads throughout the dark, gray city, transforming it into a lush, green world. This is an enchanting tale with environmental themes and breathtaking illustrations that become more vibrant as the garden blooms. Red-headed Liam can also be spotted on every page, adding a clever seek-and-find element to this captivating picture book.
#9
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The Little Gardener
Written & illustrated by Emily Hughes
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
I loved the fun take on having a "little" gardener who tries to make the garden look beautiful by working as hard as he can, but in the end, he needs a little help from someone bigger. His efforts inspire those around him to work harder and he gets the help he needs! This book is darling.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7
There was once a little gardener and his garden meant everything to him. He worked hard, very hard, but he was just too little (or at least he felt he was). In this beautifully gentle tale, Emily Hughes, the celebrated author of Wild, once again transports us to a world not unlike our own, but still brimming with fantasy and wonder.
#10
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The Tree Lady
Written by H. Joseph Hopkins & illustrated by Jill McElmurry
Thoughts from Mr. Staccato
This is a perfect book for a gardening list. A true story about a strong woman with a vision for how she could beautify a city with her love and knowledge of gardening.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-10
Unearth the true story of green-thumbed pioneer and activist Kate Sessions, who helped San Diego grow from a dry desert town into a lush, leafy city known for its gorgeous parks and gardens. Katherine Olivia Sessions never thought she’d live in a place without trees. After all, Kate grew up among the towering pines and redwoods of Northern California. But after becoming the first woman to graduate from the University of California with a degree in science, she took a job as a teacher far south in the dry desert town of San Diego. Where there were almost no trees. Kate decided that San Diego needed trees more than anything else. So this trailblazing young woman singlehandedly started a massive movement that transformed the town into the green, garden-filled oasis it is today. Now, more than 100 years after Kate first arrived in San Diego, her gorgeous gardens and parks can be found all over the city. Part fascinating biography, part inspirational story, this moving picture book about following your dreams, using your talents, and staying strong in the face of adversity is sure to resonate with readers young and old.
Table of Contents
Scroll to books about Gardening and...

Books About Gardening and Seasons

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The Secret Garden
Thoughts from The Goodfather
The Secret Garden is one of my favorite stories from my childhood. I love Mary's self discovery and her help to Colin and ultimately Mr. Craven along the way. I love the way she gains color in her cheeks as she experiences the joy of playing and working outside and nurturing a garden and befriending a robin, joys that Martha and Dickon help her discover. I love that she feels the happiness that comes as she moves from a very self-centered character to thinking of others and putting their needs and wellbeing above her own. She also is lovingly forthright and frank with Colin, which helped him develop, too.
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12
After losing her parents, young Mary Lennox is sent from India to live in her uncle’s gloomy mansion on the wild English moors. She is lonely and has no one to play with, but one day she learns of a secret garden somewhere in the grounds that no one is allowed to enter. Then Mary uncovers an old key in a flowerbed – and a gust of magic leads her to the hidden door. Slowly she turns the key and enters a world she could never have imagined.
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Growing Season
Written & illustrated by Maryann Cocca-Leffler
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
El and Jo are the smallest students in class--and best friends, too. But in springtime, something BIG happens: Jo starts growing like a weed . . . and El doesn't. When their teacher asks every child to pick a plant to care for over the summer, poor El ends up with a tiny, flowerless aster. But slowly, the aster blooms--and so does El! A sweet picture book about the joys and challenges of growing up.
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Miss Maple's Seeds
Written & illustrated by Eliza Wheeler
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
Miss Maple goes around each season to gather lost seeds, and then nurtures and teaches them before helping them get planted and bloom. This is a sweet story with an underlying message that even the biggest, grandest trees start from a small seed.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5
Fans of Miss Rumphius will adore this gorgeous picture book which introduces the kind, nature-loving Miss Maple, who celebrates the miracle in each seed. Miss Maple gathers lost seeds that haven’t yet found a place to sprout. She takes them on field trips to explore places to grow. In her cozy maple tree house, she nurtures them; keeping them safe and warm until it’s time for them to find roots of their own, and grow into the magnificent plants they’re destined to become. Eliza Wheeler’s luminous paintings feature gorgeous landscapes, lush foliage and charming details. Her tender story celebrates the potential found in each seed—since even the grandest tree and most brilliant flower had to grow from the smallest of seeds. Celebrate every season with Miss Maple, from Earth Day to graduations to harvest festivals.
Honorable Mentions
And Then It's Spring book
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In My Garden book
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In a Garden book
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Bunny Hopwell's First Spring book
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  1. And Then It's Spring - Simple text reveals the anticipation of a boy who, having planted seeds while everything around is brown, fears that something has gone wrong until, at last, the world turns green. By the Caldecott-winning artist of A Sick Day for Amos McGee.

  2. In My Garden - A little girl and her older friend poetically describe the garden as it changes through the seasons. This quiet, intergenerational story pays homage to experiencing nature as a child and as an adult. The two friends watch the birds, fly a kite, plant flowers and play in the snow. Two picture book giants, author/editor Charlotte Zolotow and author/illustrator Philip Stead collaborate across generations in this elegant retooling of Ms. Zolotow’s In My Garden, originally published in 1960, complete with delicate, colorful illustrations.

  3. In a Garden - Acclaimed author Tim McCanna celebrates gardens, nature, and all sorts of critters in this delightful and vibrant read-aloud picture book. In the earth a single seed sits beside a millipede worms and termites dig and toil moving through the garden soil How does a garden grow? Follow along from seed to sprout to bud to flower as a garden blooms. Worms, ladybugs, millipedes, and more help a garden grow each season. Tim McCanna’s gorgeous, rhyming text, combined with Aimée Sicuro’s stunning illustrations make this charming picture book as informative as it is fun to read aloud. Bonus backmatter features tons of cool facts about ecosystems and the symbiosis between plants and bugs.

  4. Bunny Hopwell's First Spring - Bunny Hopwell doesn’t understand why everyone is so excited about Spring–he was born during the winter, and all he’s known is snow and cold. After smelling fresh grass and hearing robins sing, he finally understands what Spring is—the perfect time to spring over the garden fence and explore the world!

Want to see books about seasons?

Books About Gardening and Recycling And Green Living

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The Night Gardener
Written & illustrated by Terry Fan and Eric Fan
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Everyone on Grimloch Lane enjoys the trees and shrubs clipped into animal masterpieces after dark by the Night Gardener, but William, a lonely boy, spots the artist, follows him, and helps with his special work.
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Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt
Written by Kate Messner & illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
I love this beautiful, unique look at a garden, as it shows what's happening above and below the ground and pairs it with sweet sentiments of gardening with family and creating something beautiful together. This book shows the efforts of diligent work, and it also shows the beauty in nature around us, both in plants and animals.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
In this exuberant and lyrical follow-up to the award-winning Over and Under the Snow, discover the wonders that lie hidden between stalks, under the shade of leaves . . . and down in the dirt. Explore the hidden world and many lives of a garden through the course of a year! Up in the garden, the world is full of green—leaves and sprouts, growing vegetables, ripening fruit. But down in the dirt exists a busy world—earthworms dig, snakes hunt, skunks burrow—populated by all the animals that make a garden their home.
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What Grew in Larry's Garden
Written by Laura Alary & illustrated by Kass Reich
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Grace thinks Larry's garden is one of the wonders of the world. In his tiny backyard next door to hers, Larry grows the most extraordinary vegetables. Grace loves helping him - watering and weeding, planting and pruning, hoeing and harvesting. And whenever there's a problem - like bugs burrowing into the carrots or slugs chewing the lettuce - Grace and Larry solve it together. Grace soon learns that Larry has big plans for the vegetables in his special garden. And when that garden faces its biggest problem yet, Grace follows Larry's example to find the perfect solution. Inspired by a real person, author Laura Alary has written a heartwarming story about how amazing things can grow when you tend your garden with kindness. In this case, Larry, a teacher, is helping to grow community. He has his students grow tomato plants that they then give away to their neighbors with personal notes. It offers a powerful lesson on the influence of generosity, while encouraging young children to become community activists in their own neighborhoods. This uplifting story fosters an appreciation for neighborhood and community at a time when that sentiment seems to be eroding. The book also contains an environmental message about harvesting your own vegetables and, with Kass Reich's colorful illustrations, works beautifully for a life science exploration of growth and changes in plants. There are character education connections to caring, cooperation, empathy, kindness, perseverance and teamwork.
Honorable Mentions
Pete Moss and the Super Strong Spinach book
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Bloomers Island: The Great Garden Party book
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  1. Pete Moss and the Super Strong Spinach - Follow Pete Moss in this magical, beautifully illustrated story as he attends boarding school on Bloomers Island to learn about gardening and growing his own vegetables. When Professor Sage announces the Very Very Veggie Challenge, Pete immediately knows what he needs to grow spinach. It’s the one vegetable that can make him stronger. But does Pete have the patience to grow his spinach plants to win the contest? With the help of headmaster Professor Sage and his fellow Bloomers, Pete learns all about spinach, working hard toward his goals, and that good things take time to happen! The Bloomers series brings to life the world of gardening and healthy-eating to young children in new and exciting ways.

  2. Bloomers Island: The Great Garden Party - The popular Bloomers Island! gardening kits and online world blossom in a playful, beautifully illustrated new book aimed at getting kids to love everything about nature. Join the Bloomers on a whimsical adventure as they attend a magical boarding school on Bloomers Island. As Pete Moss, Rosey Posey, Big Red, Violet, and their friends prepare for the Great Garden Party, they learn about gardening, healthy eating, and caring for the environment. The treehouse school is held by the arms of Mr. Banyan, a tree about to celebrate his 200th birthday. His birthday party is filled with fun games that teach the curious students that gardening is not at all boring or hard—that it’s actually really fun!

Books About Gardening and Family

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When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree
Written by Jamie L. B. Deenihan & illustrated by Lorraine Rocha
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-8
"When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." In this imaginative take on that popular saying, a child is surprised to receive a lemon tree from Grandma for her birthday. After all, she DID ask for a new gadget! But when she follows the narrator's careful--and funny--instructions, she discovers that the tree might be exactly what she wanted after all.
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Growing Vegetable Soup
Written & illustrated by Lois Ehlert
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-6
A father and child grow vegetables and then make them into a soup.
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Grandpa Green
Written & illustrated by Lane Smith
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
A child explores the ordinary life of his extraordinary great-grandfather, as expressed in his topiary garden.
Honorable Mentions
The Little Green Girl book
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The Invisible Garden book
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Grandma's Gardens book
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  1. The Little Green Girl - Mr. Aster, who likes routine, is happy to care for Little Green Girl when she arrives in his garden, but not interested in helping her see the world beyond its walls.

  2. The Invisible Garden - A young girl and her family travel from the city to the country to celebrate her grandmother’s birthday. Someone suggests that Arianne, as the only child at the party, might enjoy exploring the garden more than listening to the adults chat. Arianne is unsure what to do in the quiet garden, and she soon lies down out of boredom. But then she spots a pebble…and a grasshopper…and flies away on a dandelion seed pod into the cosmos as she discovers the freedom of her imagination.

  3. Grandma's Gardens - From mother-daughter team Hillary Clinton and Chelsea Clinton comes a celebration of family, tradition and discovery, and an ode to mothers, grandmothers and the children they love. Grandma Dorothy shared her love of gardens with her daughter, Hillary, and her granddaughter, Chelsea. She taught them that gardens are magical places to learn, exciting spaces for discovery, quiet spots to spend time with family and beautiful areas to share stories and celebrate special occasions. But most of all, she taught them that in her gardens, her love grew and blossomed. In this inspiring and heartwarming mother-daughter story, Hillary Clinton and Chelsea Clinton team up to show readers how sharing the things we love with the people we love can create powerful, everlasting bonds between generations. Praise for Grandma’s Gardens**:** “A deeply affectionate tribute to the bounty of nature and the love of gardening.” --Publishers Weekly

Books About Gardening and Friendship

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The Little Gardener
Written & illustrated by Emily Hughes
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
I loved the fun take on having a "little" gardener who tries to make the garden look beautiful by working as hard as he can, but in the end, he needs a little help from someone bigger. His efforts inspire those around him to work harder and he gets the help he needs! This book is darling.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7
There was once a little gardener and his garden meant everything to him. He worked hard, very hard, but he was just too little (or at least he felt he was). In this beautifully gentle tale, Emily Hughes, the celebrated author of Wild, once again transports us to a world not unlike our own, but still brimming with fantasy and wonder.
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Sophie's Squash
Written by Pat Zietlow Miller & illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
Sophie's grocery turns into her best friend, and later, her new squash plant! This cute story about an unexpected garden is so fun and I love that Sophie turns the squash into her friends by drawing faces on them.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7
On a trip to the farmers' market with her parents, Sophie chooses a squash, but instead of letting her mom cook it, she names it Bernice. From then on, Sophie brings Bernice everywhere, despite her parents' gentle warnings that Bernice will begin to rot. As winter nears, Sophie does start to notice changes.... What's a girl to do when the squash she loves is in trouble? The recipient of four starred reviews, an Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Honor, and a Charlotte Zolotow Honor, Sophie's Squash will be a fresh addition to any collection of autumn books.
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Just Ask!
Written by Sonia Sotomayor & illustrated by Rafael López
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and award-winning artist Rafael Lopez create a kind and caring book about the differences that make each of us unique. Feeling different, especially as a kid, can be tough. But in the same way that different types of plants and flowers make a garden more beautiful and enjoyable, different types of people make our world more vibrant and wonderful. In Just Ask, United States Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor celebrates the different abilities kids (and people of all ages) have. Using her own experience as a child who was diagnosed with diabetes, Justice Sotomayor writes about children with all sorts of challenges–and looks at the special powers those kids have as well. As the kids work together to build a community garden, asking questions of each other along the way, this book encourages readers to do the same: When we come across someone who is different from us but we’re not sure why, all we have to do is Just Ask.
Honorable Mentions
The Selfish Giant book
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Outside In book
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That's Not a Daffodil! book
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  1. The Selfish Giant - A beloved tale that has lasted for generations, The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde, one of the world’s greatest writers, tells the tale of a very selfish giant, his wonderful garden, the curious and playful village children, and, of course, the little child who changes the giant’s heart. A beloved classic in English literature, The Selfish Giant may be Oscar Wilde’s greatest story of redemption and forgiveness. Newly illustrated by renowned artist Jeanne Bowman, this fantastic edition of this famous tale showcases Wilde’s story in a pallet and composition that will delight and inspire both young and old and will become a family treasure to be read again and again.

  2. Outside In - “A compassionate story of homelessness and friendship, recycled art and community.” —Kirkus Reviews A twelve-year-old boy living on the streets of Chandigarh, India, stumbles across a secret garden full of sculptures and sees the possibility of another way of life as he bonds with the man who is creating the garden in this searingly beautiful novel—based on a true story. Twelve-year-old Ram is a street boy living behind a sign on a building’s rooftop, barely scraping by, winning games of gilli for money, occasionally given morsels of food through the kindness of Mr. Singh, a professor and father of his friend Daya. But his prowess at gilli (an outdoor game similar to cricket) is what gets him into big trouble. One day, when he wins against some schoolboys fair and square, the boys are infuriated. As they chase Ram across town, he flings his small sack of money over a factory gate where no one can get it, and disappears into the alleyways. But someone does get the money, Ram discovers when he sneaks back later on to rescue what is his—a strange-ish man on a bike who also seems to be collecting…rocks? Ram follows the man into the jungle, where he finds something unlike anything he’s seen—statues, hundreds of statues…no, thousands of them! Gods and goddesses and buildings, all at half scale. What is this place? It seems that the rock collecting man, Nek, has built them all! When Nek discovers that Ram has followed him, he has no choice but to let the boy stay and earn back the money Nek has already spent. How else can he keep him quiet? For his creations lie on land that isn’t technically his to build on. As Ram and Nek hesitantly become friends, Ram learns the true nature of this hidden village in the jungle, as well as the stories of Shiva and Lord Rama, stories of gods and goddesses that in strange ways seem to parallel Ram’s…and Nek’s. Based on the true story of one of India’s most beloved artists and modern day folk heroes, Nek Chand was a real man—a man displaced from his home in the midst of war and conflict; a man who missed his home so terribly he illegally reconstructed his entire village in miniature out of found objects and rock, recreating mosaic statues and sculptures spanning acres of jungle. Though Ram is a fictionalized character, Nek’s artwork is real. Intertwined with mythology and the sociopolitics of India, this is an exquisitely wrought, unexpected, and singular tale about the connection of community and how art can help make us human.

  3. That's Not a Daffodil! - A playful story that children will enjoy again and again about an inventive boy, a kindly gardener, a growing friendship, and the promise of a bulb. When Tom’s neighbor Mr. Yilmaz gives him a brown bulb, Tom can’t believe it will flower. “That’s not a daffodil!” says Tom. “Well,” says the old gardener. “Let’s plant it and see.” Tom plays a game of imagination as the daffodil bulb given to him by his kindly neighbor grows first into a green beak, then turns into a rocket, and finally into a trumpet of gold. A satisfying tale, playful repetition, and building anticipation will make children request this story again and again.

Books About Gardening and Flowers

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Planting a Rainbow
Written & illustrated by Lois Ehlert
picture book
Recommend Ages: 1-2
This educational and enjoyable book helps children understand how to plant bulbs, seeds, and seedlings, and nurture their growth. Lois Ehlert's bold collage illustrations include six pages of staggered width, presenting all the flowers of each color of the rainbow.
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Miss Rumphius
Written & illustrated by Barbara Cooney
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
A beloved classic is lovelier than ever! Barbara Cooney’s story of Alice Rumphius, who longed to travel the world, live in a house by the sea, and do something to make the world more beautiful, has a timeless quality that resonates with each new generation. The countless lupines that bloom along the coast of Maine are the legacy of the real Miss Rumphius, the Lupine Lady, who scattered lupine seeds everywhere she went. Miss Rumphius received the American Book Award in the year of publication. To celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of two-time Caldecott winner Barbara Cooney’s best-loved book, Viking has reoriginated the illustrations, going back to the original art to ensure state-of-the-art reproduction of Cooney’s exquisite artwork. The art for Miss Rumphius has a permanent home in the Bowdoin College Museum of Art.
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Secret Garden
Written by Mandy Archer & illustrated by Jane Newland
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5
In The Secret Garden, preschoolers befriend robins and other animals along with Mary, Dickon, Martha, and Colin, experiencing the transformative magic of a well-loved garden. Little readers not only see the garden flourish, but they watch how Mary and Colin blossom with attention and friendship. Quotes from the original text are woven throughout this retelling, and the beautiful artwork creates a book to be treasured through childhood and beyond.
Honorable Mentions
The Secret Garden book
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Zinnia's Flower Garden book
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An ABC of Flowers book
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The Secret Garden of George Washington Carver book
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  1. The Secret Garden - BabyLit® is a fashionable way to introduce your toddler to the world of classic literature. With clever, simple text by Jennifer Adams, paired with stylish design and illustrations by Sugar’s Alison Oliver, these books are a must for every savvy parent’s nursery library. This book introduces your toddler to Burnett’s, The Secret Garden.

  2. Zinnia's Flower Garden - Zinnia plants a garden, eagerly waits for the plants to grow, sells the beautiful flowers, then gathers seeds to plant the following year.

  3. An ABC of Flowers - Step into the garden and learn your ABC’s with this colorful feast for the eyes! From asters and daises to roses and sunflowers, An ABC of Flowers is a colorful burst from the garden that will have little hands eager to grab. Filled with gorgeous photo illustrations, bold colors, and clever line art featuring a miniature-sized girl named Amelie, toddlers will laugh and be mezmerized by the book’s vibrant pages. Perfect for the youngest readers learning their ABC’s!

  4. The Secret Garden of George Washington Carver - The inspirational story of George Washington Carver and his childhood secret garden is brought to life in this picture book biography by the author-illustrator team behind Muhammad Ali: A Champion Is Born. When George Washington Carver was just a young child, he had a secret: a garden of his own. Here, he rolled dirt between his fingers to check if plants needed more rain or sun. He protected roots through harsh winters, so plants could be reborn in the spring. He trimmed flowers, spread soil, studied life cycles. And it was in this very place that George’s love of nature sprouted into something so much more—his future. Gene Barretta’s moving words and Frank Morrison’s beautiful paintings tell the inspiring life and history of George Washington Carver, from a baby born into slavery to celebrated botanist, scientist, and inventor. His passion and determination are the seeds to this lasting story about triumph over hardship—a tale that begins in a secret garden.

Books About Gardening and Science And Nature

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The Tree Lady
Written by H. Joseph Hopkins & illustrated by Jill McElmurry
Thoughts from Mr. Staccato
This is a perfect book for a gardening list. A true story about a strong woman with a vision for how she could beautify a city with her love and knowledge of gardening.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-10
Unearth the true story of green-thumbed pioneer and activist Kate Sessions, who helped San Diego grow from a dry desert town into a lush, leafy city known for its gorgeous parks and gardens. Katherine Olivia Sessions never thought she’d live in a place without trees. After all, Kate grew up among the towering pines and redwoods of Northern California. But after becoming the first woman to graduate from the University of California with a degree in science, she took a job as a teacher far south in the dry desert town of San Diego. Where there were almost no trees. Kate decided that San Diego needed trees more than anything else. So this trailblazing young woman singlehandedly started a massive movement that transformed the town into the green, garden-filled oasis it is today. Now, more than 100 years after Kate first arrived in San Diego, her gorgeous gardens and parks can be found all over the city. Part fascinating biography, part inspirational story, this moving picture book about following your dreams, using your talents, and staying strong in the face of adversity is sure to resonate with readers young and old.
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Diana’s White House Garden
Written by Elisa Carbone & illustrated by Jen Hill
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
Diana Hopkins lived in a white house. THE White House. World War II is in full force across the seas. It’s 1943, President Roosevelt is in office, and Diana’s father, Harry Hopkins, is his chief advisor. And Diana wants to be part of the war effort. After some well-intentioned missteps (her quarantine sign on her father’s office door was not well-received), the President requests her help with his newest plan for the country’s survival: Victory Gardens! From award-winning author Elisa Carbone comes the true story of how Diana Hopkins started her own Victory Garden on the White House lawn under the tutelage of Eleanor Roosevelt. With dedication and patience, she showed the nation that the war effort started first on the homefront.
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Little Yellow Bee
Written by Ginger Swift and Cottage Door Press & illustrated by Katya Longhi
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3
Introduces animals & environments Encourages use of fine motor skills Entertains with exploration & surprise Explore a colorful garden with Little Yellow Bee. The chunky board book has especially thick flaps for baby to grasp and lift. Simple sentences reinforce future language structure. Illustrations include lots of details to hold baby's attention. ISBN: 978-1-68052-083-5 5.0"w x 5.0"h 6 lift-a-flap spreads embossed cover with foil
Honorable Mentions
A Year in Our New Garden book
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Karl, Get Out of the Garden! book
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Pick, Pull, Snap!: Where Once a Flower Bloomed book
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Old Manhattan Has Some Farms book
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  1. A Year in Our New Garden - Anna and Benjamin’s family has just moved into their new house and even though it’s in the middle of a busy town, it has a beautiful big garden for them all to enjoy.Soon the family has made plans for their perfect garden — Mum wants a lawn and a terrace, Dad wants to help the birds and insects, Benjamin wants to plant beautiful flowers and Anna wants to fill the garden with tasty vegetables.Join Anna and Benjamin as, with a little help from their neighbor, they spend a year learning about all the wonderful things you can do in a garden: planting, harvesting, playing, enjoying picnics and spotting wildlife.Alongside the charming story, A Year in Our New Garden also gives real gardening tips and provides recipes for tasty home-grown snacks to inspire children to get outdoors, be active and learn how nature changes around them throughout the year.This beautifully detailed, seasonal story is a perfect companion to Gerda Muller’s A Year Around the Great Oak and How Does My Garden Grow?

  2. Karl, Get Out of the Garden! - Do you know what a Solanum caule inermi herbaceo, foliis pinnatis incises, racemis simplicibus is?* Carolus (Karl) Linnaeus started off as a curious child who loved exploring the garden. Despite his intelligence—and his mother’s scoldings—he was a poor student, preferring to be outdoors with his beloved plants and bugs. As he grew up, Karl’s love of nature led him to take on a seemingly impossible task: to give a scientific name to every living thing on earth. The result was the Linnaean system—the basis for the classification system used by biologists around the world today. Backyard sciences are brought to life in beautiful color. Back matter includes more information about Linnaeus and scientific classification, a classification chart, a time line, source notes, resources for young readers, and a bibliography. *it’s a tomato!

  3. Pick, Pull, Snap!: Where Once a Flower Bloomed - In the orchard a honey bee buzzes. Its legs brush pollen inside a fragrant pink flower: A small green fruit begins to grow and grow and grow…. Peaches and peas and even peanuts — they all begin with a single flower: How? Open this book and find out!

  4. Old Manhattan Has Some Farms - A clever new spin on “Old MacDonald,” this fun book explores the popular trend of urban farming. From rooftop farms and gardens on Manhattan high rises to neighborhood gardens in empty lots in Atlanta to hydroponic gardens in Seattle, growing food locally has become an important part of city-dwelling life. Set to the tune of the popular children’s song, this bouncy rhyming text will get everyone reading (or singing) out loud. If you’re not comfortable singing aloud, download the free recording of the song created by popular children’s performer Caspar Babypants (aka Chris Ballew, lead singer and songwriter for the band The Presidents of the United States of America). Six North American cities are highlighted, but included in the back matter are tips and tricks on how to alter the text so you can sing about your own hometown gardens. Back matter also includes more information about the different types of gardens introduced, additional resources, and the sheet music for the song.

Books About Gardening and City Life And Urban Living

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The Curious Garden
Written & illustrated by Peter Brown
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5
One boy's quest for a greener world... one garden at a time. While out exploring one day, a little boy named Liam discovers a struggling garden and decides to take care of it. As time passes, the garden spreads throughout the dark, gray city, transforming it into a lush, green world. This is an enchanting tale with environmental themes and breathtaking illustrations that become more vibrant as the garden blooms. Red-headed Liam can also be spotted on every page, adding a clever seek-and-find element to this captivating picture book.
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Florette
Written & illustrated by Anna Walker
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7
A 2018 New York Times and New York Public Library Best Illustrated Picture Book When Mae’s family moves to a new home, she wishes she could bring her garden with her. She’ll miss the apple trees, the daffodils, and chasing butterflies in the wavy grass. But there’s no room for a garden in the city. Or is there? Mae’s story, gorgeously illustrated in watercolor, is a celebration of friendship, resilience in the face of change, and the magic of the natural world.
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The Bear's Garden
Written by Marcie Colleen & illustrated by Alison Oliver
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7
**Inspired by the true story of a community garden in Brooklyn, New York, *The Bear’s Garden* by Marcie Colleen is a testament to how imagination and dedication can transform communities and create beauty for everyone in unexpected places.** A little girl sees an empty lot in a city and imagines what it can be. She sees a place to **grow**, a place to **play**, and a place to **love**. With the help of her stuffed bear, the girl brings her community together to create a beautiful garden. **An Imprint Book**
Honorable Mentions
Thank You, Garden book
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Errol's Garden book
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The Balcony book
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The Vegetable Museum book
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  1. Thank You, Garden - From the author of the Caldecott Honor–winning picture book All the World comes an exuberant, lyrical celebration of the plants—and people—that grow and thrive in a busy community garden. A community garden unites children and neighbors in this celebration of all the things that grow there, from flowers and fruits to friendships. In the spirit of her Caldecott Honor­–winning picture book All the World, this ode to friendship, community, and working together for a better world will have young readers gathering their friends young and old to plant something together.

  2. Errol's Garden - Errol loves gardening, but he doesn’t have a proper garden. Although his home is full of beautiful plants, he longs for an outdoor space where he can grow things. A chance discovery leads to a solution, but Errol can’t do everything on his own. Luckily, help is near at hand. A heart-warming and inclusive tale about how one small boy’s dream of a garden unites a diverse community in a positive and enriching experience for everyone.

  3. The Balcony - When a little girl moves from her home to an apartment in the city, she takes her pretty plants with her and one by one they grow and bloom and change both her world and the world all around her as she makes a new friend. When your heart is open, the world is full of possibilities.

  4. The Vegetable Museum - Thirteen-year-old Chloë left her whole life back in Montreal, including her mom and her best friend. Now she’s stuck in Victoria with her dad and her estranged grandfather, Uli, who recently had a stroke. When Chloë agrees to help Uli look after his garden, she’s determined to find out why he and her dad didn’t speak to each other for years. For decades Uli has collected seeds from people in the community, distinct varieties that have been handed down through generations. The result is a garden full of unusual and endangered produce, from pink broccoli to blue kale to purple potatoes. But Chloë learns that the garden will soon be destroyed to make way for a new apartment complex. And the seed collection is missing! Chloë must somehow find a way to save her grandfather’s legacy

Books About Gardening and Flowers And Plants

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The Tiny Seed
Written & illustrated by Eric Carle
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7
With his inimitable bright collage art and simple text, Carle follows the journey of a seed, from being blown by the wind to taking root and sprouting seeds of its own. Full color.
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From seed to plant
Written & illustrated by Gail Gibbons
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
If you're looking for a very informative book about seeds and gardening, this book is for you! It's fact-filled and pretty thorough, and has descriptive illustrations.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
With simple language and bright illustrations, non-fiction master Gail Gibbons introduces young readers to the processes of pollination, seed formation, and germination. Important vocabulary is reinforced with accessible explanation and colorful, clear diagrams showing the parts of plants, the wide variety of seeds, and how they grow.
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Harlem Grown: How One Big Idea Transformed a Neighborhood
Written by Tony Hillery & illustrated by Jessie Hartland
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
**“An inspiring picture book for youngsters with meaningful ties to the environment, sustainability, and community engagement.” —_Booklist_** **“Hartland’s gouache illustrations wobble endearingly, colorfully capturing the children’s triumph, and the kinetic energy and colorful vibrancy of the city neighborhood.” —_Publishers Weekly_** **Discover the incredible true story of Harlem Grown, a lush garden in New York City that grew out of an abandoned lot and now feeds a neighborhood.** _Once_ _In a big city called New York_ _In a bustling neighborhood_ _There was an empty lot._ _Nevaeh called it the haunted garden._ _Harlem Grown_ tells the inspiring true story of how one man made a big difference in a neighborhood. After seeing how restless they were and their lack of healthy food options, Tony Hillery invited students from an underfunded school to turn a vacant lot into a beautiful and functional farm. By getting their hands dirty, these kids turned an abandoned space into something beautiful and useful while learning about healthy, sustainable eating and collaboration. Five years later, the kids and their parents, with the support of the Harlem Grown staff, grow hundreds of pounds of fruits and vegetables a year. All of it is given to the kids and their families. The incredible story is vividly brought to life with Jessie Hartland’s “charmingly busy art” (_Booklist_) that readers will pore over in search of new details as they revisit this poignant and uplifting tale over and over again. Harlem Grown is an independent, not-for-profit organization. The author’s share of the proceeds from the sale of this book go directly to Harlem Grown.
Honorable Mentions
Caterpillar and Bean book
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Flora Forager ABC book
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What Will Grow? book
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Plants Feed Me book
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  1. Caterpillar and Bean - Observe the ways plants and insects interact in a gentle introduction to growing for budding scientists. What’s that wedged in a crack in the ground, small and hard and wrinkly and brown? A bean seed! Soon it develops roots and leaves. And what’s that on the leaf? An egg! The egg hatches a caterpillar, and the caterpillar eats the leaves, getting bigger and bigger until it forms a chrysalis. Meanwhile, the plant is growing, too: it develops flowers, then bean pods, as it reaches up toward the sun. Side by side, plant and insect grow . . . and grow . . . and grow throughout the year, until they come full circle. This fourth book in the First Science Storybook series uses simple, clear language and colorful illustrations to inspire very young readers as they learn about life cycles.

  2. Flora Forager ABC - Botanical artist and Instagram sensation Flora Forager makes her children’s picture book debut with this imaginative alphabet book featuring real and imaginary animals created with natural materials gathered from her botanical foraging in wild places and from her garden. Bridget Beth Collins, known as Flora Forager on Instagram, has created her beautiful children’s book debut from natural materials gathered from her botanical foraging where she makes her home in the Pacific Northwest. Children will be fascinated by her amazing botanical creations, from angel fish to zebra, and inspired to learn their ABCs.

  3. What Will Grow? - From the team behind the gorgeous What Will Hatch? comes a companion book all about seeds and the plants that grow from them—and featuring four pull-out gatefolds. “An enchanting vision” - Publishers Weekly, starred review.

  4. Plants Feed Me - An elegant, easy-to-read text and beautiful illustrations describe the parts of plants that humans eat. Watermelons are fruits. Cabbages are leaves. Walnuts are seeds. Carrots are roots. People eat many parts of plants. Even flowers! Detailed illustrations teach new readers about the edible parts of different plants, including leaves, flowers, stems, roots, and seeds. Labeled diagrams explain how an apple seed can grow into a new plant, reveal how a walnut is contained within its shell, and show how wheat seeds make flour.

Books About Gardening and Social Themes

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The Carrot Seed
Written by Ruth Krauss & illustrated by Crockett Johnson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
When a little boy plants a carrot seed, everyone tells him it won't grow. But when you are very young, there are some things that you just know, and the little boy knows that one day a carrot will come up. So he waters his seed, and pulls the weeds, and he waits ... First published in 1945 and never out of print, this timeless combination of Ruth Krauss's simple text and Crockett Johnson's eloquent illustrations creates a triumphant and deeply satisfying story for readers of all ages.
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Lou Lou and Pea and the Mural Mystery
Written by Jill Diamond & illustrated by Lesley Vamos
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12
Two best friends with a flair for adventure use their gardening and art skills to catch a criminal during Día de los Muertos, in the first book of the Lou Lou and Pea series! Lou Lou Bombay and Peacock Pearl have been best friends since first grade. Every Friday afternoon, they get together in Lou Lou's backyard garden for their PSPP (Post-School Pre-Parents) tea party. They chat about school, discuss Pea's latest fashions, and plot the weekend's activities. But all plans go out the window when a series of small crimes crop up around El Corazón, their quaint and quirky neighborhood, right before the Día de Los Muertos procession. First, Pea's cousin's quinceañera dress is tragically ruined. Then Lou Lou's beloved camellia bush, Pinky, suffers a serious blow. And that's just the beginning! When clues start to appear in El Corazón's outdoor murals, the best friends join forces, using Lou Lou's floral expertise and Pea's artistic genius to solve the mysteries. Accented by Lesley Vamos's spirited black-and-white illustrations, Jill Diamond's debut is a delightful introduction to two very creative best friends and their unforgettable adventures! Backmatter includes a recipe, crafting activity, and glossary of Spanish terms. "Lou Lou and Pea are likable heroines and the cast of multicultural characters and Latino-themed festivities broaden the accessibility. . . . This is a pleasant, breezy friendship tale for middle grade readers who also enjoy a light mystery." —School Library Journal
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My Hair is a Garden
Written & illustrated by Cozbi A. Cabrera
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
After a day of being taunted by classmates about her unruly hair, Mackenzie can’t take any more and she seeks guidance from her wise and comforting neighbor, Miss Tillie. Using the beautiful garden in the backyard as a metaphor, Miss Tillie shows Mackenzie that maintaining healthy hair is not a chore nor is it something to fear. Most importantly, Mackenzie learns that natural black hair is beautiful.
Honorable Mentions
Sadiq and the Green Thumbs book
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The Peace Book book
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The Forgiveness Garden book
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Windfall book
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  1. Sadiq and the Green Thumbs - Even though it is summer Sadiq goes to religious school four days a week to study the Quran; he and his friends find their teacher, Mr. Kassim, strict and intimidating, but when Sadiq finds out that Mr. Kassim has a injured shoulder he decides to volunteer to help with the gardening—and he convinces his friends to volunteer as well.

  2. The Peace Book - Peace is making new friends. Peace is helping your neighbor. Peace is a growing a garden. Peace is having enough pizza in the world for everyone. The Peace Book delivers positive and hopeful messages of peace in an accessible, child-friendly format featuring Todd Parr’s trademark bold, bright colors and silly scenes. Perfect for the youngest readers, this book delivers a timely and timeless message about the importance of friendship, caring, and acceptance.

  3. The Forgiveness Garden - A long time ago and far away—although it could be here, and it could be now—a boy threw a stone and injured a girl. For as long as anyone could remember, their families had been enemies, and their towns as well, so it was no surprise that something bad had happened. Hate had happened. Revenge had happened. And that inspired more hate and more calls for revenge. But this time, a young girl decided to try something different… Inspired by the original Garden of Forgiveness in Beirut, Lebanon, and the movement that has grown up around it, Lauren Thompson has created a timeless parable for all ages that shows readers a better way to resolve conflicts and emphasizes the importance of moving forward together.

  4. Windfall - Life is full of challenges for thirteen-year-old Liza. She is already having trouble coping with the death of a local homeless man when she learns that her family’s apple tree will need to be chopped down. If that wasn’t enough, the new principal at school keeps blocking her attempts for a positive outlet by refusing permission for every project that GRRR! (Girls for Renewable Resources, Really!) and BRRR! (Boys for Renewable Resources, Really!) proposes. Liza starts to feel like she needs to create change in her world without seeking permission. When she chooses the school grounds as the site for her latest endeavor, she may have gone too far.

Books About Gardening and Spring

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The Year of the Garden
Written by Andrea Cheng & illustrated by Patrice Barton
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-9
In this prequel to The Year of the Book, join Anna in a year of discovery, new beginnings, friendships, and growth.
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Badger's Perfect Garden
Written by Marsha Diane Arnold & illustrated by Ramona Kaulitzki
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
Badger is ready to plant the perfect garden. He has spent months gathering and sorting seeds. His friends come to help. After the seeds are planted, everyone celebrates. But then a rainstorm comes and washes away all of their hard work. Is the garden ruined?
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Patience, Miyuki
Written by Roxane Marie Galliez & illustrated by Seng Soun Ratanavanh
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-6
Miyuki wakes up early to say good morning to every flower in the garden, but there's one sleepy flower that still hasn't bloomed. Miyuki's grandfather tells her that not every flower blooms at the same time, but she runs around, quickly, quickly, looking for water to wake the flower up. 'Sometimes, Miyuki, sometimes it is not necessary to run, don't you know? You must be patient, the journey is a bit long.'
Honorable Mentions
Grow, Candace, Grow book
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Too Many Bunnies book
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  1. Grow, Candace, Grow - In Grow, Candace, Grow, written by New York Times bestselling author and star of the hit Netflix series Fuller House Candace Cameron Bure, little Candace convinces her teacher that her class should plant a garden to celebrate spring. She’s so excited as the big day approaches, and soon Candace is dirty from head-to-toe planting flowers with her friends (and her hamster, Harry). When the work is complete, Candace is “underwhelmed” by the puny plantings and wants to know when the flowers are going to bloom. “It takes a little patience,” her teacher explains, but Candace is not particularly fond of waiting. As she comically attempts to speed up the growing process, the garden falters and Candace discovers patience really was the best plan after all. Following the success of Candace Center Stage, the second book in this bestselling series, written by Candace Cameron Bure and illustrated by Christine Battuz, includes an adorable cover adorned with embossing and glitter.

  2. Too Many Bunnies - From New York Times bestselling author and illustrator Tomie dePaola comes an adorable springtime story about fifteen bunnies who are planting a garden! Spring is here! That means it’s time for the Hopkins family to plant their beautiful gardens. But when fifteen eager rabbits try to dig, rake, plant, and water at the same time, will any work get done? From award-winning author Tomie dePaola comes a charming story about what happens when you have too many bunnies, perfectly suited in a gifty board book.

Want to see books about spring?

Books About Gardening and The Environment

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How to Grow a Friend
Written & illustrated by Sara Gillingham
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3
A lovely metaphor teaches valuable lessons in how to treat others and make friendships blossom! Making a friend takes patience, care, and room to bloom--just like growing a flower. Soon your little gardeners will have their very own green thumbs for this most important of life skills.
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The Leaf Men
Written & illustrated by William Joyce
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
When an old woman gets sick and her garden begins to die, the doodle bugs call on the Leaf Men to make things right again.
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The Flower
Written by John Light & illustrated by Lisa Evans
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Brigg lives in a small, grey room in a large, grey city. When he finds a book in the library labelled ‘Do Not Read’, he cannot resist taking it home. In it, he comes upon pictures of bright, vibrant objects called flowers. He cannot find flowers anywhere in the city, but stumbles instead on a packet of seeds. This sets off a chain of events which bring about unexpected results, continuing to grow and bloom even after we have turned the last page. John Light’s enigmatic story is told with utter simplicity, but resonates long after we finish reading this book. His increasingly optimistic vision is hauntingly captured by Lisa Evans’s beautiful and whimsical illustrations.
Honorable Mentions
Lola Plants a Garden book
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And Then the Seed Grew book
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  1. Lola Plants a Garden - How does your garden grow? Book-loving Lola is inspired by a collection of garden poems that she reads with her mommy. She wants to plant her own garden of beautiful flowers, so she and Mommy go to the library to check out books about gardening. They choose their flowers and buy their seeds. They dig and plant. And then they wait. Lola finds it hard to wait for her flowers to grow, but she spends the time creating her own flower book. Soon she has a garden full of sunflowers and invites all of her friends for cakes and punch and a story amongst the flowers. Lola is a beloved character that continues to shine for young readers. Her curiosity and love of books is infectious. Parents and children love sharing Lola’s stories. Rosalind Beardshaw’s beautiful illustrations highlight Lola’s close-knit family and how they use stories and books to interact with their world. Lola’s brightly colored and growing garden is the perfect surrounding for this bright little girl.

  2. And Then the Seed Grew - In an ordinary garden full of flowers and plants, little Jack and Mr. Gnome live above the ground, while Yvonne the mole, the Field Mouse family, Paulie the earthworm and Colette the ant live below the ground. Everybody is happy in the garden. Until one day, a new seed arrives, which soon sprouts into a plant. As the plant begins to grow (and grow, and grow), its stalk and leaves get in the way of those aboveground, and its roots disrupt the homes and passageways of those underground. Before long, the plant has gotten so large, it has become a huge problem for the garden’s residents. So, the friends decided they must chop it down. Unless … wait! What’s that growing on the plant? In this multilayered (and multilevel!) picture book, international award-winning author-illustrator Marianne Dubuc humorously explores the concept of change as the characters resist but eventually accept the new addition, an excellent example of a growth mindset. The story also highlights the interconnectivity of living things and, thus, the concept of community. Animal habitats and the growth cycle of plants - from seed to fruit-bearing - are presented here with easy-to-understand, child-friendly visuals. The winsome illustrations are full of clever details, offering peeks into the animals’ fantastical homes, promising something new to discover with every look, and encouraging visual literacy.

Books About Gardening and First Concepts

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Plant the Tiny Seed
Written & illustrated by Christie Matheson
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
This cute interactive book is fun because it has more then just pressing or tilting the book, you get to clap and wiggle your fingers (along with other fun tasks) to plant seeds and help them grow into beautiful flowers!
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
There is magic in every tiny seed. The seeds that come in little paper packets and those that fall from flowers and plants. In every garden and every flowerpot, magic can grow. With a little sunlight, a little water, and a little help from birds and worms and bees, a tiny seed sprouts, a plant grows, and a beautiful f lower blooms. There is magic in every tiny seed. And in this book, you become the magician. How? Press the seed into the ground, wiggle your fingers to add water, clap to bring the sun. And then . . .turn the page. What can grow from one tiny seed? Press, tap, wiggle, and jiggle to start the magic! Press the seed—don’t be shy! Wiggle your fingers to add some water. Clap your hands to bring the sun. Wow! A beautiful flower!
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The Hidden Rainbow
Written & illustrated by Christie Matheson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Illustrations and simple, rhyming text invite the reader to uncover the rainbow of colors hidden in a garden, which helps flowers bloom and bees find food. Includes facts about bees and their importance.
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Edible Colors: See, Learn, Eat
Written & illustrated by Jennifer Vogel Bass
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5
"A unique and eye-catching concepts board book featuring brightly colored varieties of fruits and vegetables that's perfect for teaching little ones to identify colors (and good foods to eat)." - Seira Wilson, Amazon Editor With a combination of unusual foods and a kaleidoscope of colors, this concept book shows that not all foods have to look the same way. A banana can be red, broccoli can be purple, and cherries can be yellow and still taste just as delicious.
Honorable Mentions
Nana's Garden book
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Bloom book
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The Little Gardener book
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Hello, Garden Bugs: A High-Contrast Book book
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  1. Nana's Garden - Explore all of the delights and surprises to be found in NANA’S GARDEN. Join our young gardener as she spends her Sundays picking juicy red tomatoes, catching beautiful black and orange butterflies, counting the daisies in her basket, scooping up caterpillars, and much more. Larissa Juliano’s joyful word play begs to be read aloud again and again to toddlers sitting on laps… and dreaming of sunny days in Nana’s garden.

    • Lively text appeals to children and the person reading it to them.
    • Sturdy format is perfect for little hands.
    • Combines counting and color recognition while encouraging movement and play.
    • A perfect gift for Mother’s Day.

  2. Bloom - A mother and child plant flower bulbs in the fall, wait through the winter, and see them bloom in the spring.

  3. The Little Gardener - A brightly illustrated board book introduces young nature enthusiasts to the preliminary steps to becoming a gardener, combining interactive lift-flaps with elementary facts about creating and caring for a garden.

  4. Hello, Garden Bugs: A High-Contrast Book - Ladybugs, snails, and butterflies! Oh my! This charming introduction to ten garden bugs, paired with friendly text and bold, basic patterns, provides a great high-contrast experience for young developing eyes. Newborns cannot fully recognize colors, so the sharp contrast between black and white patterns and illustrations allows babies to follow along and make connections to the real world, an important building block for communication skills. Using simple greetings like “Hello, bumblebee” and “Good to see you, dragonfly” alongside black-and-white art by Julissa Mora, Hello, Garden Bugs is the perfect board book for babies just beginning to look around and learn about their world.

Books About Gardening and Magic

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Alice's Magic Garden: Before the Rabbit Hole . . .
Written by Henry Herz & illustrated by Natalie Hoopes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Curiouser and curiouser! In this imaginative prequel to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Alice finds herself at a gray, dreary boarding school that is decidedly up the rabbit hole. From the relentless clocks to the beastly students, Alice’s world is void of color and cheer—until Alice finds a secret garden and begins tending its wilting inhabitants. When Alice’s love touches an ordinary caterpillar, a lorry bird, and a white rabbit, magical things will happen—and that, as you know, is just the beginning of the story. Filled with literary allusions and clever nods to its classic roots, Alice’s Magic Garden is a delightful prequel that begs an escape to the whimsy of Wonderland.
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The Secret Garden
Written by Brooke Jorden & illustrated by David Miles
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-6
Join Mary, Dickon, and Colin on their heartwarming journey of friendship and gardening magic. Filled with interactive wheels and pull-tabs, and lavishly illustrated, The Secret Garden is an unprecedented kid's introduction to Frances Hodgson Burnett's beloved classic novel. Unlike many board books that tackle the classics, Lit for Little Hands tells the actual story in simple, engaging prose. Gorgeous springtime illustrations transport the reader to the gardens and halls of Misselthwaite Manor, while tons of interactive elements invite kids to help Mary discover the secret garden, make friends, and help Colin walk! Fans of the novel will be delighted by the book's attention to detail and clever use of original text and dialogue. And the book's super-sturdy board means everyone can enjoy this tale over . . . and over . . . and over again! The magic of the secret garden will return each time you read!
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Strega Nona's Harvest
Written & illustrated by Tomie dePaola
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
A charming celebration of autumn's bounty by perennial favorite Tomie dePaola Tomie dePaola's beloved Strega Nona is back in a colorful picture book, perfect for fall and the changing seasons. With beautiful illustrations reminiscent of the artwork that won Tomie dePaola the Caldecott Honor for the original Strega Nona, this celebration of harvest and gardening will make the perfect addition to any Strega Nona collection.
Honorable Mentions
Mighty Jack book
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The Magic Garden book
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  1. Mighty Jack - Jack might be the only kid in the world who’s dreading summer. But he’s got a good reason: summer is when his single mom takes a second job and leaves him at home to watch his autistic kid sister, Maddy. It’s a lot of responsibility, and it’s boring, too, because Maddy doesn’t talk. Ever. But then, one day at the flea market, Maddy does talk—to tell Jack to trade their mom’s car for a box of mysterious seeds. It’s the best mistake Jack has ever made. In Mighty Jack, what starts as a normal little garden out back behind the house quickly grows up into a wild, magical jungle with tiny onion babies running amok, huge, pink pumpkins that bite, and, on one moonlit night that changes everything…a dragon.

  2. The Magic Garden - Just like the passing of the seasons, or the mysterious transformation of a caterpillar into a butterfly, in this garden, everything is continually changing. With gorgeous illustrations and a beautiful story of a young girl discovering the marvels of nature, The Magic Garden is sure to delight young readers. At the end, the mysteries uncovered in the story are explained, so children can get their questions about the natural world answered, including sections on how bees make honey, why some animals camouflage themselves, and how a seed grows into a tree. Learning about nature has never been more enchanting!

Want to see books about magic?

Books About Gardening and Farm Life And Ranch Life

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We Are the Gardeners
Written by Joanna Gaines & illustrated by Julianna Swaney
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Joanna and the kids chronicle the adventures of starting their own family garden. From failed endeavors, obstacles (bunnies that eat everything!), and lessons learned, the Gaines family shares how they grew a happy, successful garden. As it turns out, trying something new isn't always easy, but the hardest work often yields the greatest reward.
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Fortune's Magic Farm
Written by Suzanne Selfors
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12
When she is rescued from a rainy, boggy town where she works in a dismal factory, ten-year-old orphan Isabelle learns that she is the last surviving member of a family that tends the world's only remaining magic-producing farm.
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A Ruckus in the Garden
Written & illustrated by Sven Nordqvist
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Pettson and Findus are back in this uproarious tale about gardening! When Pettson announces that it’s time to plant seeds in the garden, Findus, his cat, plants a meatball. The hilarity continues as each night their hard work is undone by hungry chickens, then a rogue pig. When cows set up shop, Pettson and Findus must hatch a plan to protect their garden and Findus’s meatballs.
Honorable Mentions
Alien Tomato book
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Apple Farmer Annie book
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Dig In! book
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Popcorn Country book
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  1. Alien Tomato - It streaked through the sky on a perfect day in July and landed in the garden… When a mysterious red orb appears one day, the vegetables aren’t sure what to make of it. They decide that it must be an alien tomato! They name her Allie and try to make her feel as welcome as possible. But Gopher isn’t convinced. He’s sure it’s just a ball. This delightfully silly tale and its equally hilarious art are a perfect fit for gardeners and sci-fi fans alike.

  2. Apple Farmer Annie - A new format for a yummy fall favorite Filled with bright primary colors and pictures of America’s favorite fruit, Wellington’s enticing story follows Annie, a busy apple farmer. She picks, counts, sorts, bakes tasty treats, and sells her best apples. Already successful in hardcover and paperback, Apple Farmer Annie in board book format is one that young tots will find absolutely irresistible.

  3. Dig In! - Dig in to this vibrant picture book that celebrates all the surprises found down in the dirt! I dig in the dirt…and find a seed. Seed waits. I dig in the dirt…and find a spider. Spider runs. Explore all of the creepy, crawly, dirty, muddy, green, and growing things that can be found outside in the garden. From pill bugs to worms to leafy green sprouts, young readers will love discovering the muddy garden habitat within the pages of this book—and outside in their own backyards! This sweet and playful celebration of outdoor exploration is a perfect read aloud for story time.

  4. Popcorn Country - How does a field of corn become a delicious bowl of popcorn? The story behind the fluffy snack the entire country loves is revealed in this photographic nonfiction picture book. Kids love food—and they especially love to eat popcorn! Author Cris Peterson offers an illuminating step-by-step examination of the history and science behind America’s favorite snack. With photographs illustrating every stage, readers get a behind-the-scenes view of how popcorn is planted, grown, harvested, processed, tested, and finally shipped to stores and movie theaters all over the world. Back matter delves into the history of popcorn and how it became so popular in the United States.

Books About Gardening and Cooking And Food

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Sylvia's Spinach
Written by Katherine Pryor & illustrated by Anna Raff
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
Sylvia thinks spinach is disgusting, but it turns out that a classroom effort to create a garden changes her mind! She ends up helping to plant the spinach in their garden, tries it, and ends up loving it.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Sylvia Spivens refuses to eat spinach, but when the teacher gives her a package of spinach seeds for the class garden, she has no choice but to plant and nurture them.
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Before We Eat: From Farm to Table
Written by Pat Brisson & illustrated by Mary Azarian
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-6
As a family sits down to enjoy a meal, thoughts of those who provide the food, from farmers who plant and tend seeds to store clerks who sell groceries, fill each one with gratitude.
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Feast of Peas
Written by Kashmira Sheth & illustrated by Jeffrey Ebbeler
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Hard-working Jiva might not be the only one anticipating a delicious feast of peas from his garden. Every morning, Jiva works in his garden until the sun turns as red as a bride’s sari. He plants peas and beans, potatoes and tomatoes, eggplants and okra in his vegetable patch. When his friend Ruvji admires his plants Jiva sings, Plump peas, sweet peas, Lined- up-in-the-shell peas. Peas to munch, peas to crunch A feast of peas for lunch. But each time Jiva is ready to pick the peas for his feast, they’re already gone. What has happened? From the award-winning author and illustrator team who created Tiger in My Soup, this original story set in India features a deliciously amusing mystery about gardening, anticipation, hard work, and generosity.
Honorable Mentions
Goodnight, Veggies book
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How Does My Fruit Grow? book
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Summer Supper book
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Peppa Pig and the Vegetable Garden book
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  1. Goodnight, Veggies - Every veggie needs their shut-eye in this restful, charming story set in the community garden, illustrated by New York Times best-selling artist Zachariah OHora. Perfect for fans of the Llama Llama series.
     
    As the sun begins to set, the tomatoes are tuckered out, the cucumbers are calm, and the beets are simply beat.
     
    But what’s got them all so exhausted?
     
    Celebrate the turning of day to night in this perfect bedtime ritual for plants—and humans—everywhere!

  2. How Does My Fruit Grow? - Sophie loves visiting her aunt and uncle in the countryside and learning all about the fruits that grow in their garden: strawberries, redcurrants and cranberries. She even discovers how a tall cherry tree grows from a small seed, and how bees help blossoms become fruit. She is sad when her family moves south but starts to enjoy her new garden with its different plants and trees. Soon Sophie makes friends with her neighbours who help her harvest melons, grapes, figs, oranges and pomegranates. At school, Sophie and her classmates learn about tropical fruits and nuts from all over the world — bananas, coconuts, cashews, pineapples and many more. This superb companion to Gerda Muller’s beloved How Does My Garden Grow? is full of beautiful, and fascinatingly detailed, illustrations. The simple story, both informative and entertaining, is perfect for teaching children where food comes from, and for inspiring interest in the wonderful diversity of the world around us.

  3. Summer Supper - From sowing seeds in spring to savoring succotash, follow the creation of a family meal from the farm to the picnic table on a warm summer evening. Told entirely in words beginning with the letter “s,” this book will give children an appreciation for the process by which their food travels to the dinner table. Mike Austin cleverly incorporates Rubin Pfeffer’s words into his art and creates a visual feast in which kids will love to indulge! Layers of humor and storytelling make this worth many revisits.

  4. Peppa Pig and the Vegetable Garden - Gardening is more fun with Peppa! Peppa and her little brother, George, love to help Grandpa Pig in the garden. They discover that everything grows from seeds planted in the dirt, and that even the apple that falls on Grandpa Pig’s head has seeds inside! Join the amiable Peppa and her spirited family as they shoo away birds and “monsta” snails, imitate butterflies and worms, make a scarecrow, and gather ingredients for a fresh salad — and Granny Pig’s delicious blackberry pie.

Books About Gardening and Animals

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Vernon Is on His Way
Written & illustrated by Philip C. Stead
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Today is a very nice day. There has never been a day so nice as this, except for maybe yesterday. Join Vernon and his friends Skunk and Porcupine on a series of three enchanting adventures entitled Waiting, Fishing, and Gardening, as they comb the forest floor for trinkets and go fishing in their own unconventional way. Award-winning author Philip Stead's calming text and playful, sincere illustrations will charm and entertain many times over.
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The Rough Patch
Written & illustrated by Brian Lies
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Evan and his dog do everything together. They play and read and eat. But mostly you will find them tending to Evan’s extraordinary garden, where flowers and other good things flourish and reach for the sky. But friends don’t always stay forever, and when Evan loses his, he destroys the place that meant the most to them, and creates something to match his mood. Something ugly and twisted, sad and stubborn, ragged and rough—and he likes it that way. Until one day . . . New York Times–bestselling author Brian Lies has created a breathtakingly beautiful and luminescent book about loss and grief, love and hope, and the healing power of friendship, curiosity, and nature.
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The Bee Book
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-6
The Bee Book shows you step-by-step how to create a bee-friendly garden, get started in beekeeping, and harness the power of honey for well-being. Fully illustrated with full-color photographs throughout, this beautiful guide covers everything you need to know to start your own backyard hive, from setup to harvest. Practical beekeeping techniques are explained with clear step-by-step sequences, photos, and diagrams so you'll be prepared to establish your own colony, deal with diseases, collect a swarm, and much more. A comprehensive gardening chapter features planting plans to fill container and border gardens, bee "hotel" and habitat projects, and an at-a-glance flower gallery of bees' favorite plants. The Bee Book also shows you how to harvest honey, beeswax, and propolis from the hive and use these ingredients in 38 recipes for home remedies, beauty treatments, and candle-making. Discover the wonder of bees in nature, in your garden, and in the hive with The Bee Book, lavishly bound in a beautiful gold-foil and texture cover and perfect for gift giving.
Honorable Mentions
The Wonder Garden book
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The Turnip book
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  1. The Wonder Garden - Open the gates of the Wonder Garden to explore five of Earth’s most extraordinary habitats, each filled with incredible creatures and epic scenery. Trek through the Amazon Rainforest, travel to the Chihuahuan Desert, dive in the Great Barrier Reef, delve deep into the Black Forest and stand on the roof of the world - the Himalayan Mountains - to see nature at its wildest. Breathtaking, engraved illustrations bring to life Earth’s spectacular Wonder Garden.

  2. The Turnip - In a rollicking, cumulative tale, a badger family and their friends–Hedgie, Mr. Ram and Vanya, the horse–struggle to pull up a giant turnip. A cocky rooster steps in and pulls, sending him into the air, holding onto the turnip. No one knows that a mother bear in her underground den has kicked the turnip up through the soil to give the family room to sleep through the winter. Once again Jan Brett brings an original twist to a favorite folktale. Snow covers the farm in rural Russia as badgers and friends in old-fashioned clothes, and bears marching through bright-colored borders, send young readers laughing from page to page.

Books About Gardening and Bunnies And Rabbits

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Hedgehog and Rabbit: The Stubborn Cloud
Written by Pablo Albo & illustrated by Gomez
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6
Hedgehog and Rabbit enjoy eating cabbages and looking for snails in their peaceful garden. When the sun is suddenly blocked by a stubborn cloud, the two friends need to come up with a plan to chase that cloud away.
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If You Plant a Seed
Written & illustrated by Kadir Nelson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Kadir Nelson, acclaimed author of Baby Bear and winner of the Caldecott Honor and the Coretta Scott King Author and Illustrator Awards, presents a resonant, gently humorous story about the power of even the smallest acts and the rewards of compassion and generosity. With spare text and breathtaking oil paintings, If You Plant a Seed demonstrates not only the process of planting and growing for young children but also how a seed of kindness can bear sweet fruit.
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The Tale of the Flopsy Bunnies
Written by Beatrix Potter
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8
When the cupboard is bare at the Flopsy Bunny's burrow, the family all have to go in search of food. They soon find some old lettuces on Mr McGregor's rubbish heap, but who can imagine the horrors that await them as they enjoy a nap after lunch! Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny are two of Beatrix Potter's most popular characters and they are brought together in this exciting tale of danger and friendship.
Honorable Mentions
Rabbit Stew book
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Hedgehog and Rabbit book
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  1. Rabbit Stew - Fox brothers Rusty and Rojo toil and till in their vegetable garden all summer long until they’re finally ready to make their splendid, scrumptious, marvelous rabbit stew. Then they begin to pick colorful ingredients one by one, from lean, green runner beans and crunchy orange carrots to fresh sprigs of parsley and roly-poly blueberries. Meanwhile, their pet rabbit watches with his bunny family, all of them getting more and more worried about what’s coming next. Finally the brothers have almost everything they need. All that’s missing is one… big… round… white… bowl! And in a deliciously sweet surprise ending, they use the bowl to serve the concoction to their favorite rabbit, Stew! And his family, too. The whimsical and vibrant artwork is filled with clever details, and every scene includes Stew, his three baby bunnies, and their mother, all trying to stay out of sight, creating a search-and-find element for every spread.

  2. Hedgehog and Rabbit - Hedgehog and Rabbit enjoy eating cabbages and looking for snails in their peaceful garden. But when a scary swirling wind comes up, the two must find a way to face their fears.

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