Thursday 8 September 2011

New gardening books

Ever since I started to grow my little garden in Japan I have been wanting to get some gardening books from here. I always kept from buying them by making excuses like not having money or not knowing the language, but I finally let myself be and got two. I bought one about container vegetables and one about fruits.


My new gardening books

I figured I really needed to get some reference books because I was struggling a little with the vegetables seasons and dates to sow. I am used to live in a very warm weather where things grow year round, but here I have to take into account a very marked winter and the cold days. Having some reference dates from the books really makes my life much easier. I also wanted to have the books because there are many vegetables here (bekkana, komatsuna, etc.) for which the information in English is a bit hard to come by.


I must try some of these special watermelon for containers

It took me a lot of time and comparing to pick them, but I am very happy with the ones I got. They are very detailed and clear, they also have a lot of drawings explaining everything, which is crucial to me because I am still learning Japanese.

I think it is interesting to see how here in Japan they have a lot of gardening books specialized on container gardening. I guess they are many people like me, who lives in the city and doesn't have space for big gardens, just a small balcony to grow. It is also nice seeing how gardening is a very common hobby, they are many different authors and publishers, and I see new gardening books coming out every year.


Japanese strawberry types, very useful

I really like these gardening books, they have nice drawings and a different approach to what I am used, so they feel fresh and special. They also have a lot of regional tips which I can use, and some ideas I haven't seen in western books; I think I will learn a lot from them. With those new insights and the western knowledge I got I think I will be able to expand my gardening skills and grow a very successful balcony garden.


I like that they have a lot of tips on container gardening

Keep posted, I will write about the new things I learn and how they turned out.


  1. Cool new books! I love gardening books from other countries, even when I barely understand the language. Also, these the graphics and drawings in these are really awesome!

  2. Fer, maybe one day you will end up writing a book of your own! "Balcony gardening: East meets West".

  3. Graphically, they look very well laid out and colorfully designed, making the information that they contain so much more pleasing to read.

  4. Thanks! It is interesting to see the difference on the approach they use, they have many cool things.

    Mark~ I wish one day I will get to that level and be able to write my own book. It is a far dream though.

  5. And I bet your Japanese will improve too. You are a successful now as it is, and you will only get better. Let me ask you a question. would you like some sunflower seeds from one of mine. I cut the head off the other day to save the seeds from the birds. I would like to send you a handful. They are black oil sunflower seeds. The sunflower is the one that is in my header on my home page for the Garden Spot. It is a small sunflower that grew about only 4 feet tall. I didn't plant it. My guess is that it grew volunteer, meaning that some bird probably dropped it. I feed those black sunflower seeds in the bird feeders. Email me your address if you would like to try some seed. I think that they would grow in a container and not take up too much room. Just let me know, fer.

  6. Oooh, looks like nice books! I love gardening books with great photos!

  7. Hi Fer, the illustration and photos in these books do indeed look more precise than what we are used to, making them especially appealing to the complete beginner as well.

  8. I think that was a good idea to buy yourself some books--you deserve it after all your patience and skill with your balcony garden. I agree with Mark that a book about your experiences would probably sell--especially among your garden blogging friends. Enjoy the books!

  9. I love Japanese books..they're full of pictures and cute illustrations.
    Wow watermelon in a container?! I'd love to try that..

  10. I can't read but i think it's so detail book! Looking forward for your post!

  11. Thank you! I will work on my japanese to try and get the best out of the books.

    Ann ~ I would love some seeds.

  12. Could you post the ISBNs of the books? I'm a keen gardener and also learning Japanese and it's much more fun to read about something you are interested in as well as improving your skills

  13. antisyzygy ~ the books are NHK趣味の園芸 やさいの時間 有機栽培もOK!プランター菜園のすべて ISBN-10: 4141991066 for veggies
    and 失敗しない果樹の育て方―庭植え・鉢植え ISBN-10: 4791613376 for fruits

    hope it helps

  14. fer, how adventurous you are buying books in a new language. I'm sure it will pay off though, as you mention, it would be hard to find information on japanese vegetables anywhere else.

  15. Japanese reference book are always so detail. I never read one for gardening. But I found the step by step instruction in cook book are easy to follow. Those pictures look so cute.

  16. I love Japanese reference gardening books because they are so detailed and very informative. I own 5 Japanese gardening books and it provides a lot techniques about gardening.

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  17. I agree. Japanese books about gardens and landscaping are indeed very informative and factual. I also have a collection of Japanese gardening books for my landscaping references.

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