Lazy-Ass Gardening: Maximize Your Soil; Minimize Your Toilby Robert Kourik, 240 pages, 8½x11, softcover. In my twenties, I put in my days of stacking 700 bales of hay into the barn in 95° heat with a six-month-old strapped to my back. I am so over that: this book is more my speed now. Kourik eschews the unrealistic perfectionism of gardens in the media for experienced, utilitarian, cheapskate advice geared toward maximizing your gardening pleasure and minimizing your gardening pain. He starts the book by recommending you consider where you will nap in your garden! Other slightly less lazy topics include how to get the most out of plant selection, tillage (or no-till) options, compost, water management, tools, pruning and pest control. All written in Kourik’s signature cheeky style (“Use an old golf bag to hold long-handled tools... of course, you’ll probably have to be your own caddie”) and studded with amusing anecdotes (“I met a gardener years ago who worked at the CIA. He brought home shredded government secrets to mulch his vegetables.”) Kourik lives in Zone 9 California, so not all his variety recommendations will work in the North, but most of his advice travels well. If you prefer napping to wrestling with weeds—and honestly, who doesn’t?—his book is for you. -Alice Coyle NEW!
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