Top 5 Garden & Nature Books for Adults

Why should the kids be the only ones challenged to a summer reading list? Sometimes, summer is the only time that adults have the capacity to squeeze in a whole book during a vacation or weekends at the lake. Here are a few that cover some of our favorite topics – gardening and nature.

  1. The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative – As gardeners, we simply know that we enjoy being outside but this book helps explain why – with science and data. From the slowing of heart rate to the calming of brain waves, this read explores “how time in nature is not a luxury but is, in fact, essential to our humanity.”
  2. Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World – From the same author as The Nature Fix, this audio-only book follows the measurable, scientific effects of nature on anxiety, creativity, and overall well-being. Following three different groups of participants – war veterans, domestic survivors of sex trafficking, and a self-proclaimed anti-nature urbanite – the discussions and results are fascinating. 
  3. Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder – Author Richard Louv explores the influence nature has on children and studies the vast difference in children from today to just a few decades earlier. From childhood development to therapeutic application, through environment-based education, Louv shows how regular exposure to the outdoors can have straightforward effects on children’s physical, emotional, and spiritual progression. Additionally, Louv has published Vitamin N, which offers ways for families to connect with nature more intentionally. 
  4. A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail – Although not a recent write as it was originally published in 1998, this autobiographical travel memoir is a fun summer read about friendship, adventure, and discovery along the legendary trail running from Maine to Georgia. After chuckling through the pages, don’t skip the stunning screen version with Robert Redford and Nick Nolte. And, yes, it’s totally okay to note how the book is always better than the movie.
  5. Potting Shed Mystery Series – If a light, easy read is more of your summer reading style, AND you love a good garden setting for a mystery series, this might be the perfect fit. Through seven different novels to date, the character Pru Parke’s talent in the garden often gives access to an incredible landscape project that ends up connecting a crime, suspects, evidence, or all of the above in captivating, page-turning stories.

So, is the summer reading list challenge accepted? Great! When you’re done reading, come in and tell us all about it! It will be like an impromptu book club in the middle of the greenhouse!

If you want more nature-focused summer reading ideas for the adults in your life or to learn more about what is happening at our Emerald City, please sign up to join our email list.

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