If I could only own one gardening book

If you are looking for a general gardening book, "The Southern Living Garden Book" is the best one. It lists plants alphabetically and cross-references common and botanical names. Some books focus on ornamental plants instead of vegetables; this one covers nearly any plant you might want in any sort of garden. Unlike many gardening books that do not acknowledge the South's heat, this book will tell you that you live somewhere too hot for a particular plant to grow, It further divides the South into Upper, Middle, Lower, and Tropical South; folks in Maryland can grow lots of plants people in South Carolina cannot. It also includes helpful lists of plants such as deer resistant plants, good shade trees, and plants that like moisture. I think the previous edition of this book was the first gardening book I ever owned; whether you are an experienced gardener or a novice, your book collection is incomplete without it.

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