Books, Magazines + Notecards


Books, Magazines + Notecards

Following is a sampling of the many books and magazines available for sale at Common Ground.



How to Grow More Vegetables

by John Jeavons. 8th Edition. Common Ground’s best seller and every gardener’s essential guidebook. Explains how to produce a beautiful organic garden with minimal watering and daily care. The method works in harmony with nature’s cycles, preserving and enriching earth’s nutrients, and nourishing the soil for future crops. The book includes updated gardening charts and the latest techniques.

Food for the Future Now

Ecology Action Booklet 34, by Damon P. Miller II, MD, Carol Cox and Robin Mankey. This self-teaching mini-series booklet has carefully constructed a garden plan based on the GROW BIOINTENSIVE method to insure sustainability, assuming beginning yields, less improved soil and beginning gardening skills. The plan provides basic nutritional needs for one person, using open-pollinated seeds with good genetic diversity, and growing increasingly healthy soil. It uses 4,730 square feet of growing beds, and can produce a special complete 1,600 calorie/day diet. Also described are smaller plans so that one can develop skills with each crop before growing a larger area.

American Grown, the Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America

by Michelle Obama. In April 2009, First Lady Michelle Obama planted a kitchen garden on the White House’s South Lawn. In this book, you will see striking original photographs of each season’s garden growth. Try some recipes created by the White House chefs made with ingredients from the White House garden. You can learn from the White House garden team how to plant your own backyard, school, or community garden. Mrs. Obama’s journey continues across the nation as she shares the stories of the gardens that have moved and inspired her: Houston office workers who made a sidewalk bloom; a New York City school that created a scented garden for the visually impaired; a North Carolina garden that devotes its entire harvest to those in need; and other stories of communities that are transforming the lives and health of their citizens.

Edible Landscaping: Now You Can Have Your Gorgeous Garden and Eat It Too!

by Rosalind Creasy. Drawing on the author’s decades of research and experience, this brand new edition presents everything you need to know to create an inviting home landscape that will yield mouthwatering vegetables, fruits, nuts, and berries. The comprehensive Encyclopedia of Edibles?a book in itself?provides horticultural information, culinary uses, sources, and recommended varieties. The appendices cover the basics of planting and maintenance, and of controlling pests and diseases using organic and environmentally friendly practices.

A Gardener’s Guide To California Native Plants

by Native Revival Nursery. This is an excellent spiral-bound book with advice on transplanting and tending native plants, and how to grow native annual wild flowers. It includes information on native trees, shrubs, perennials and grasses. You can learn about plants that attract song birds, hummingbirds, bees, butterfl ies and benefi cial insects.

Golden Gate Gardening

by Pam Peirce. A complete guide to year-round food gardening in the San Francisco Bay Area and Coastal California. The definitive reference to local gardening principles, vegetables and herbs, fruit trees and shrubs, edible and cut flowers, rooftop gardens, soil amendments and fertilizers, watering and mulching, drought gardens and more. A must have reference book. A bestseller!

Local Birds San Francisco Bay Area

I really appreciate this waterproof Pocket Guide of Backyard-Trail & Shore-Water Birds which helps quickly identify over 200 popular species. It is the most complete, durable, user-friendly guide to nature science anywhere. I have known the owner of the company for years. They are a family-friendly, community-involved company that donates a portion of the profits from our sales to environmental causes. They help save our baylands from corporate building plans. Your purchase will help to restore vital habitat to native and migratory birds in the San Francisco Bay Area. Playing cards and butterfly cards are also available.

-Patricia Becker, Common Ground Center Manager

How to Prune Fruit Trees and Roses

This book was first written in 1944 by R. SAnford Martin, whose intent was to take the mystery out of pruning all kinds of fruit trees. After the book went out of print, some smart people realized there was still demand for it, and decided to reprint it. This revised version contains new chapters on pruning tools and pruning roses. It walks the average gardener through the entire process of pruning step by step for a plethora of fruit trees and plants.

“The Organic Gardners Handbook” and “The Vegetable Growers Handbook”

by Frank Tozer. These well-written companion books include a practical how-to guide in Biointensive gardening and detailed directions for sowing, growing and harvesting 70 common vegetables. These detailed and illustrated manuals cover soil management, composting, mulching, green manures, crop planning, seed propagation, transplanting, weed and pest control. Frank is from England and studied locally at U.C.S.C.

“Attracting Native Pollinators, Protecting North Americas Bees and Butterflies”

by the Xerces Society Guide. North America’s native pollinators face multiple threats to their health and habitat. Ensure pollination in your garden, orchard, or farm. Provide host plants and nesting sites for bees and butterflies. The Xerces Society offers a complete action plan for protecting these industrious beings.

“Homegrown Herbs, a Complete Guide to Growing, Using, and Enjoying More than 100 Herbs”

by Tammi Hartung. Infuse your yard with the flavor, fragrance, beauty, and healing power of organic herbs. “You’ll find not only practical advice and endless tips on growing herbs, but a wise, deep, friendly voice.” – Rosemary Gladstar, from the Foreword.

“Sharing the Harvest, a Citizen’s Guide to Community Supported Agriculture”

by Elizabeth Henderson with Robyn Van En. “If we want to keep farmers in business, it’s time for all of us, ordinary citizens and policy makers alike, to begin learning how that might be done. Sharing the Harvest is a great place to start.” – Joan Dye Gussow, from the Foreword.

“The Edible Front Yard, the Mow-less, Grow-more Plan for a Beautiful, Bountiful Garden”

by Ivette Soler. This book helps you combine the loveliest and tastiest edibles and ornamentals in a garden that is a year-round feast for the eyes. Ms. Soler teaches all the tricks, from laying out the design and choosing the best front yard plants, to clear instructions for a bounty of exciting projects.

The New Good Life

by John Robbins. Free yourself from misconceptions about money using a new economics of happiness. Follow in the footsteps of real people who have effectively forged new financial identities. Develop a diet that promotes better health, and discover alternatives to expensive medicine. John Robbins is noted for his bestselling classic, Diet for a New America.

Plants of the San Francisco Bay Region, Mendocino to Monterey

by Linda H. Beidleman and Eugene N. Kozioff. Here is the definitive botanical guide to the wetlands, woodlands, coastlines, hills and valleys of the beautiful and diverse San Francisco Bay Region. Revised in 2003, this popular book continues to be the most comprehensive and authoritative identification guide to the region’s native and introduced plants.

Common Ground Planting and Gardening Guide

Common Ground Planting and Gardening Guide for you …. created by us! An excellent and simple month- by-month guide, it includes guidelines on what to plant and/or transplant during each month of the year – whether in flats or in the ground. Each month also offers advice and reminders about your garden such as composting, tree pruning and much more. A best seller!

Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods

by Sandor Ellix Katz. Join the latest trend and pick up a copy. Explore the wonderful world of homemade yogurt & cheese, miso & tempeh, beers & wines, veggie krauts & kimchis, and fabulous sourdough breads – all brought about by wild yeasts that are abundant everywhere. Katz has included methods and recipes so you can get started right away on making fun and exciting food and beverages that utilize live cultures. In no time at all, you’ll be sipping your own beer and eating homemade cheese on your own freshly baked bread!

The Landscaping Ideas of Jays: A Natural History of the Backyard Restoration Garden

by Judith Larner Lowry is a great guide to backyard restoration and the rewards of growing native plants at home. Lowry organizes the book by season to give you an easy way to find out how to plan a landscape for yearlong cultivation, maintenance, and harvesting of a diverse array of native annuals and perennials. Attract birds and beneficial insects, harvest seeds for next year, and add fun features like paths and ponds, all with the help of Lowry’s expert guidance.

Recipes from the Garden

by Rosalind Creasy. Two hundred exciting recipes from the author of The Complete Book of Edible Landscaping. Nothing tastes better than food fresh from the garden. Eating seasonally, eating locally and eating organically have never been easier. We have been anxiously awaiting Rosalind’s new book. Autographed copies available!

Healthy at 100

by John Robbins. This book is a marvelous blend of wisdom, hope, courage and common sense. John Robins reveals the secrets for living an extended and fulfi lling life, gleaned from four very different cultures that have produced some of the world’s healthiest and longest living people. With an emphasis on simple, wholesome and satisfying fare, a manageable daily exercise routine and the cultivation of strong, loving personal relationships, the book provides the tools for making our later years a period of wisdom, vitality and happiness.

Cool Cuisine – Taking the Bite Out of Global Warming

by San Francisco Bay Area chef Laura Stec with Dr. Eugene Cordero, Ph.D, San Jose State Professor of Meteorology. It addresses why global warming could be the best thing to happen to the culinary world in a long time, and reports on innovative science, business, and savory solutions to the Global Warming Diet. Cool Cuisine tells a story of really interesting people doing really inspiring things, and how you can too. The reader embarks on a exploration that feeds mind and mouth with art, science, pleasure, culinary tips and recipes on how to cook a globally cool cuisine.

The New Whole Foods Encyclopedia

by Rebecca Wood. Tips on how to heal with Ayurveda, Western nutrition, and traditional Chinese medicine. A complex index, organized so readers can research treatments by ailment as well as the food itself. Line drawings illustrating unusual foods so readers can recognize them in stores. A glossary of medical terms. Sidebar recipes throughout.

The Big Book of Preserving the Harvest

Written by Carol W. Costenbader. Revised by Joanne Lamb Hayes. Includes 150 Recipes for freezing, Canning, Drying, and Pickling Fruits and Vegetables. With this book, even the busiest folks can create a well-stocked pantry of fruits, vegetables, flavored vinegars, pickles, chutneys, and seasonings. Step-by-step illustrated instructions, information charts, and a host of delicious recipes make this an indispensable kitchen reference for cooks of all levels. This book covers the handling and managing of produce fresh from the market or garden.

The Self-Healing Cookbook

Written by Kristina Turner, and is a Whole Foods to Balance Body, Mind & Moods book. Here’s a cookbook that makes good bedtime reading! This playful, user-friendly primer blends the wisdom of macrobiotics, the psychology of self-esteem, and a planetary view of healing. You’ll find over 130 dairy-free, sugar-free, low-fat recipes — all family-tested favorites from Kristina Turner’s cooking classes, including: Sesame Waffles with Apple Syrup, Black Bean Soup, Rice Wedding Salad, Millet Burgers & Gravy, Apricot Mousse, and Strawberry Pie.

Panty Hose, Hot Peppers, Tea Bags, and more- for the Garden

Written by Yankee Magazine, and is a Rodale Organic Gardening Book. Includes 1,001 ingenious ways to use common household items and to control weeds, beat pests, cook compost, solve problems, make tricky jobs easy, and save time. Throught the pages of this book, you’ll discover more than 1,000 ideas for using common households items or things you’d normally toss out in unique and unusual ways in your vegetable and flower beds. Why make a special trip to the garden center or home supply store when the solution might be lurking right in your garage, your closet, or your pantry?

Growing Medicinal Herbs in as Little as Fifty Square Feet

by Louisa Lenz-Porter. Discover the common medicinal herbs that can be easily cultivated in your own backyard. Both a step-by-step guide to growing and using medicinal herbs and a quick guide to common herbal remedies for a wide range of ills. A wonderful bonus is the comprehensive bibliography of reference books and articles.

California Native Plants for the Garden

is a musthave title for every California gardener. Learn about the amazing diversity of our area, and how to bring it into your own backyard! Authors Bornstein, Fross, and O’Brien each have over 25 years’ experience with California natives, and they come together in this book to provide the most comprehensive information on using California natives in the garden. Discover the rewards of gardening with our native species! This is a bestseller!

The Organic Rose Garden

by Liz Druitt. Create beautiful blooms and heavenly scents without the need of chemical fertilizers or pesticides. Druitt explains the basics of organic rose gardening and offers reviews and tips for over 175 rose varieties. An invaluable resource section details sustainably managed rose nurseries, environmentally responsible garden products, and helpful further reading.

Making Plant Medicine

by Richo Cech. The book is a modern making-medicine and formulary with its roots in original Herbalism. It is designed for every medicinal herb gardener to cultivate the full potential of the plant-human relationship. Making Plant Medicine is a preferred herbal reference, used by medicine makers of all descriptions. This book has found its way into kitchens, herbal laboratories, and herb schools throughout the world. In this fully updated third edition, Richo Cech has enriched his formulary with 12 new herbs, providing a broader view of useful plant species that can be cultivated in the home garden and used in family health care.

Herbal Harvest

by Greg Whitten. A hardcover book on organic production of quality dried herbs, it covers virtually every subject which needs to be considered by herb growers. Greg Whitten has pioneered the development of techniques for producing premium quality medicinal herbs in the country. Topics include propagation, planting, weed management, biodynamic aspects, processing, marketing and more.

Cass Turnbull’s Guide to Pruning

by Cass Turnbull. This book offers excellent pruning advice for over 160 species of trees, shrubs, ground covers, and vines. It also covers the basics of pruning to give the new gardener a sound general knowledge.

The Home Orchard: Growing Your Own Deciduous Fruit and Nut Trees

edited by Ingels, Geisel, and Norton. Perfect for backyard orchards and rare-fruit growers. This book covers innovative practices that enthusiasts have developed in recent years, including proper and efficient watering and irrigation. Includes special focus on organic and non-toxic pest management and fertilization.

Seed Sowing and Saving

by Carole B. Turner. Step-by-step techniques for collecting and growing more than 100 vegetable, flower, and herb seeds. Includes 300 illustrations and time-proven tips for starting seeds correctly.

The Apple Grower

by Michael Phillips. A guide for the organic orchardist, this book combines the wisdom of our great-grandparents with the best research and techniques of today to explain natural apple growing. This new expanded colorful edition features soil and tree care, orchard biodiversity, harvest, marketing and sustainability.

Designing and Maintaining Your Edible Landscape Naturally

by Robert Kourik. Features easy-to care- for edible plants that fertilize the soil and attract beneficial insects. Guides the reader on designing her or his own aesthetic edible landscape; includes tree pruning and care. Includes gourmet recipes to transform your harvest to a feast.

Growing 101 Herbs that Heal

by Tammi Hartung helps you add diversity and healing power to your garden with medicinal plants including St. John’s wort, fennel, chicory and skullcap. Discover how economical it is to create your own teas, tinctures, compresses and more.


Sunflower Houses – A Book for Children and Their Grown-Ups

by Sharon Lovejoy. Remember making clover chains, hollyhock dolls and firefly lanterns? Or hosting a fairy tea party? Remember checking the clock when the Four O’Clocks bloomed? These simple pleasures and hundreds more are gathered here in a magical book of inspiration from the garden. See our Children’s Section.

Wicked Cool Sustainable Solutions for the Earth

An activity and coloring book for little and big people. Especially for our young gardeners, a wonderful addition to your bookshelf! Recommended by a wide spectrum of educators, from Montessori teachers to college professors. This book guides readers of all ages toward solution-oriented activities that help them become problem-solvers, while having loads of fun!

THE CHILDREN’S GARDEN -An organic gardening primer

by Jody Main. The text and engaging photos follow the celebrated history of the Woodside School children’s garden to introduce readers to the concepts of organic gardening and the joy of gardening in community with children and adults together. Be sure to attend the SCHOOL GARDEN BASICS class which Jody is co-teaching.

WORMS Eat Our Garbage — Classroom Activities for a Better Environment

by Mary Appelhof, Mary Frances Fenton and Barbara Loss Harris. This book is filled with fun activities to teach worm anatomy, classification, lifecycle, and physiology. Learn how to care for worms and to collect useful castings and liquid tea for your garden while learning riddles and a song to sing together about worms and worm composting. Perfect for introducing environmental awarness to school-age children.


Pacific Horticulture

Published by the non-profit Pacific Horticultural Foundation, whose mission is to stimulate and inspire gardeners in the art and science of horticulture on the West Coast. Beautiful photos with great articles, some written by customers of Common Ground.

Fruit Gardener

California Rare Fruit Growers’ amazing publication of information, including a resource of seed banks and networking potential.

Dig It! DVD!

Watch and learn how to prepare your soil more easily by following the techniques developed by John Jeavons during over a quarter of a century of double-digging. Show the DVD to your friends in the morning, then go out and have a digging party in the afternoon!

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