Cover image for The vegetable gardener's bible : discover Ed's high-yield w-o-r-d system for all North American gardening regions
The vegetable gardener's bible : discover Ed's high-yield w-o-r-d system for all North American gardening regions
Smith, Edward C. (Edward Clarke), 1941-
Publication Information:
Pownal, Vt. : Storey Books, 2000.
Physical Description:
ix, 309 pages : color illustrations ; 29 cm

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
SB324.3 .S62 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
SB324.3 .S62 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Gardening
SB324.3 .S62 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Gardening
SB324.3 .S62 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
SB324.3 .S62 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

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Discover the last W.O.R.D. in vegetable gardening with Ed Smith's amazing gardening system. By integrating four principles -- Wide beds, Organic methods, Raised beds, and Deep beds -- Smith reinvents vegetable gardening, making it possible for everyone to have the best, most successful garden ever. By following this complete system you cultivate deep, powerful soil that nourishes plants and discourages pests and disease. The result is fewer weeds, healthier plants, and lots of great-tasting vegetables. Plus, you'll enjoy gardening as you never have before. The Vegetable Gardener's Bible -- the last W.O.R.D. in vegetable gardening.

Praise for the book:
"this book will answer all your questions as well as put you on the path to an abundant harvest. As a bonus, anecdotes and stories make this informative book fun to read." - New York Newsday

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Smith, who raises nearly 100 varieties of vegetables in his Vermont garden, recommends a method of gardening that calls for wide, raised, deep beds, resulting in more vegetables with less work. In part 1 Smith explains how this is achieved, giving instructions on selecting a site, acquiring the correct tools, laying out the beds, interpreting the information in seed catalogs, and starting seeds indoors. He also offers instructions on crop rotation, sowing seeds outdoors, installing a trellis, weeding, mulching, fertilizing, watering, harvesting, and growing plants in cold frames and greenhouses. Part 2 deals with soil requirements, making and using compost, and pest and disease control. Part 3 is an A-to-Z listing of vegetables and herbs, with details on growing, harvesting, and storing. Each entry has a list of the plant's best varieties. There are 550 color photographs that complement the informative text. --George Cohen

Publisher's Weekly Review

A committed organic gardener, Smith is a proponent of staggered planting in raised, wide and deep beds that provide conductive root systems and produce abundant harvests. He explains his system, from optimum siting and soil preparation (he prefers broad-forking over rototilling or double-digging) to companion planting and compost ("The path to the garden of your dreams leads right through the middle of a compost pile"). For beginners, he takes the mystery out of such subjects as hardening off ("like a little boot camp for vegetables") and deciphering the shorthand used in seed catalogues. An abundance of photographs (most of Smith's own garden) visually bolster the techniques described, while frequent subheads, sidebars and information-packed photo captions make the layout user-friendly. The book concludes with an alphabetically arranged listing of vegetables and herbs in which Smith offers advice on every aspect of cultivation, as well as a selection of the most flavorful varieties. Smith doesn't necessarily break new ground here, but his book is thorough and infused with practical wisdom and a dry Vermont humor that should endear him to readers. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Smith, caretaker of a 1500-square-foot garden containing almost 100 varieties of vegetables, clearly explains everything novice and experienced gardeners need to know to grow vegetables and herbs using his system of wide, deep, raised beds. He gives detailed instructions on siting, preparing, and planning a vegetable garden, then goes on to cover choosing plant varieties, starting seed, and growing plants. Smith discusses how to create compost and ecologically friendly methods of dealing with plant diseases and pests. Detailed explanations of companion planting, crop rotation, and succession planting add to his book's value. The final third of the book gives specific cultural information (covering all regions of North America), as well as recommended varieties for many vegetables and selected herbs. Recommended for all libraries for its thorough, easy-to-follow instructions and information on companion plants and crop rotation.--Sue O'Brien, Downers Grove P.L. IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Some Thoughts about Vegetable Gardening Once in a long time, a truly fresh gardening personality emerges. Over the past 30 years, I've had the privilege of working wit a few of these--Jim Crockett in the 1960s, Dick Raymond and Bob Thomson in the '707s, Louise Riotte in the '80s, Lewis and Nancy Hill in the '90s. Ed Smith, vegetable gardener, Cabot, Vermont, is the latest of these amazing personalities. He and his family tend a richly fertile garden of over 1,500 square feet filled with raspberries, blueberries, flowers, herbs, and nearly 100 varieties of vegetables, including some Vermont heirlooms. His garden looks like what I envision as the "vegetable garden of Eden." I never would have learned of, nor met, Ed but for his brother Charly, a Storey staff editor and horticultural expert in his own right. When we were looking for someone who was doing new and exciting things in the vegetable garden, he suggested that we meet his brother Ed. When we learned that Ed lived in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont (where gardening is only slightly easier than in Siberia!), we were skeptical. That is, until we saw his vegetable gardens. They are beautiful, the result of a high-yield system of gardening that Ed has been refining for over three decades. "If I can do it here in northern Vermont, it can be done just about anywhere," said Ed. The proof was before our eyes, and as we talked, we realized how logical and easy his approach was. To underscore a point, he took us to the richest compost pile I've ever seen. With mock seriousness he instructed, "The path to a high-yield garden leads straight through the middle of a compost pile." Clearly, Ed's no stick-in-the-mud when it comes to gardening. Wherever we walked, Ed had gardening wisdom to share. At the corn patch he said, "Corn has the highest sugar content early in the morning. So pick it then, before it's warmed by the sun, and refrigerate it in the husk until dinnertime. You'll get the best-tasting corn with the morning harvest." It's true. When we saw him dusting his seed potatoes with sulfur, he explained that sulfur is a fungicide, but that wasn't the reason he did it. "Treat seed potatoes with sulfur, and Colorado potato beetles will be much less of a problem." I followed his advice, and my new red potatoes were the best I've ever had. In the pages that follow, you'll see the results of his gardening system with your own eyes. We've come to refer to this system as the "W-O-R-D," to remind us of the wide rows, organic methods, raised beds, and deeply dug soil that underlie everything that Ed does. You'll discover these, along with the trellises that allow beans to grow to the sky, knowledgeable companion planting, and basic crop rotation, all leading to remarkable harvests--a vegetable gardening paradise. We spent the past year with Ed in Vermont, photographing his gardens from the first day of soil preparation to the last days of putting the garden to bed. These year-round pho Excerpted from The Vegetable Gardener's Bible: Discover Ed's High-Yield W-O-R-D System for All North American Gardening Regions by Edward C. Smith All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Foreword: Some Thoughts about Vegetable Gardeningp. viii
Part 1 From Seed to Harvest: Higher Yields with Less Workp. 1
Chapter 1 A New Way to Garden: Wide, Deep, Raised Bedsp. 3
Chapter 2 Planning Your Garden, Growing Your Planp. 31
Chapter 3 Jump-Starting Your Gardenp. 51
Chapter 4 Growing a Self-Sufficient Gardenp. 75
Chapter 5 Enjoying the Harvest and Tucking the Garden Inp. 99
Part 2 The Healthy Garden: Above and Below Groundp. 111
Chapter 6 Nurturing Vegetable-Friendly Soilp. 113
Chapter 7 Rot and Recycle: Making and Using Compostp. 135
Chapter 8 Banishing Bugs, Slugs and Things That Go Chomp in the Nightp. 149
Part 3 Vegetables and Herbs, A-Z: Great Taste and More Varietyp. 177
Appendixesp. 298
Indexp. 304