Garden Bloggers' Book Club November Wrap Up

The nice thing about an online book club as compared to one that meets in real-time is that you can run it in “virtual time”, so that if one or two people participate later on, they can still be part of the fun.

In real-time, if El and Bill had shown up yesterday and today at my doorstep, I would have had to say, “um, sorry, the club met on Friday”. Instead I get to say “Great, happy to have a few more people along for the fun!”

So, if you haven’t read all the reviews and opinions and write ups from fellow garden bloggers on the book, The Essential Earthman by Henry Mitchell, you can go back to the original “club meeting” post and get yourself caught up. Then check out El’s post and Bill’s post for some different perspectives on the book.

You should also go back if you read the original club meeting post early on because I also “snuck in” a post from Old Roses after originally publishing it. And I ran across something else I wrote based on something I read in “Earthman” that you might be interested in if you haven’t read it already.

That’s it I think. I really do thank all for participating. It has been fun to first read a gardening book, second share thoughts on the book with everyone, and finally, read what others think.

On to December. The book selection is “My Favorite Plant” edited by Jamaica Kincaid. Even if you don’t have time to read the book, you can still participate by writing a post about your own favorite plant, let me know via a comment you’ve done so, and then I’ll publish a wrap up post with links to all posts on December 30th or thereabouts.


  1. I am way late on this, but since I actually made the post anyway I thought I'd provide the link:

    Thank you, Carol, for facilitating this book club. I'm already looking forward to the next book!

  2. Hi Carol! I'm sort of limping along this month, but managed to get a post up tonight for the December club "meeting." Thanks, as always, for continuing to organize this!

    The Inadvertent Gardener

  3. Hope I'm not too late to join the party on Henry Mitchell. M. at Zanthan gave me a copy of his book last month. I have to confess, along with another blogger who wrote in, to having no clue who Mitchell was before reading about your book club.

    I absolutely LOVED this book. It is laugh-out-loud funny. His dry wit infuses every page, nearly every paragraph. Like Bill, I discounted a lot of Mitchell's plant recommendations, due to our very different climates, but I never skipped any paragraphs because I knew I'd miss out on some hilarious point he'd make.

    Like other readers, I found Mitchell opinionated, but never overbearing. He is so self-deprecating about his own failures and modest successes (and I'm sure his garden was much more gorgeous than he let on) and so amenable to other gardeners having their own ideas of beauty (Who am I to say? he often pointed out), and overall so darn funny, that I loved every chapter.

    The only quibble I had was that he sometimes seemed to be writing only to other men, wink-wink referring to his wife as a hinderance to realizing his garden dreams. Probably it was all in fun. Likewise, Emily Whaley, in her wonderful garden memoir, spoke of her husband fondly but also as a mere source of money for the garden. I guess the sexism can go both ways, but then again these writers were from a different era.

    Imagine a meeting between the two of them! Whose wit would be drier? Whose opinions more obstinate? Whose garden tales more hilarious? What fun!


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