10 best gardening books for beginners to herb your enthusiasm

New to gardening? We’ve got the best books to get you started.

Senior woman in deck chair, relaxing in garden, under an old apple tree

by Piper Huxley |

Growing and gardening may come naturally to some. However, not all of us were blessed with a green thumb. Though beautiful, practical and therapeutic, getting started in the gardening scene can be a little daunting. Luckily, books are available to ensure you make the right decision for your outdoor space. Some of the best gardening books for beginners will give you the right tools to become knowledgeable about the great outdoors. Perfect for those who want to get planting.

Black Friday deals on gardening books for beginners

We interrupt the regularly scheduled content to let you know that although Black Friday is over, there's still time to grab some last chance Black Friday deals on gardening books for beginners. These are the retailers that still have deals available or keep scrolling to continue reading our buyer’s guide.

Shop Black Friday gardening books for beginners deals on: Amazon UK | Waterstones

Top deal: Field Guide to Urban Gardening WAS £19.99, NOW £15.39
10% off: The First-Time Gardener: Container Food Gardening WAS £18.99, NOW £17.15
31% off: How Not to Kill Your Houseplant: Survival Tips for the Horticulturally Challenged, WAS £9.99, NOW £6.92
8% off: RHS How To Garden When You're New To Gardening WAS £16.99, NOW £15.63
8% off: How to Grow Stuff: Easy, No-Stress Gardening For Beginners WAS £12.99, NOW £11.95

What do I need to consider?

This all depends on your space and what you intend to plant or nurture. Fortunately, there are different books that specialise in different aspects of gardening. For example, there are titles about urban gardening, green-housing and indoor plants – to name a few. You could get a book with good information on greenhouses, but it will be useless if you’ve got a small outdoor space.

Gifting a beginner’s guide to a loved one? Make sure to check what they need before you buy.

We’ve scoured the internet and found the top-rated (and best) gardening books for beginners on the market. From colourful flowers to vegetables – and beyond, especially if you're completely clueless about your garden - and have no idea where to start.

To sum up, it’s time to turn-ip the page.

Best gardening book for beginners UK 2023

Best Gardening Book for Beginners

On sale

Best Gardening Books for Beginners RHS - How To Garden When You're New To Gardening: The Basics For Absolute Beginners

Rrp: £16.99

Price: £10.39
Alternative retailers
Waterstones£16.99View offer

Create a garden that you can enjoy year-round with the expertise of the Royal Horticultural Society. Learn everything you need to know with this guide to kickstart your new garden. Learn the basics of growing your garden and packed with detailed steps and expert advice. This book is full of simple ideas that you can do yourself.

Pros: Good, basic tips

Cons: Simple

Customer Review: "As a first-time Garden owner this seems perfect!! Sections on how to work out what kind of soil you've got, how to build raised beds, how to choose shrubs for year-round interest, etc etc. I'm totally absorbed - feel like it's really pitched at my level. Very easy to read and beautifully presented."

Best Beginners Book for Modern Gardening
Best Gardening Books for Beginners Gardening for Complete Beginners: Why, What and How to Start Planting in 7 Days
Price: £12.07

First, we've picked this one as our essential guide to gardening in the modern age. What better time to take up a new hobby? Gardening is a beautiful way to make life enjoyable. You're taking care of something, nurturing it. It benefits our mental and physical wellbeing, as well as helps with environmental issues. Plus, the book itself will guide you through the history of gardening (and promises trivia), different types of gardens, urban gardening and the benefits.

Pros: Available on audio, Kindle and paperback, Covers plenty of bases

Cons: Comprehensive detail

Customer Review: "When you think of gardening - you might be surprised at the variety of types of gardening there are. And once you begin researching on your own, it might be a bit overwhelming. This book provides a comprehensive introduction to all aspects of gardening whether you live in an urban, suburban or rural environment. If you are new to gardening, this is the book you should start with, in order to find your way to what garden will work best for you."

Best Beginners Gardening Book for Smaller Spaces

On sale

Best Gardening Books for Beginners Small Garden: Design your garden with this gardening book for beginners

Rrp: £9.99

Price: £6.99
Alternative retailers
Waterstones£9.99View offer

Joe Swift, the expert gardener, has written a no-nonsense, practical guide on how to create your own small garden. From courtyards to rooftops, Swift promises to help transform even the most awkward and unexciting places. In this book, Joe covers a vast range of exciting, impactful and innovative ways to stamp your personality on your outdoor space.

Pros: Easy to understand, Good tips and ideas

Cons: Needs more images, one in a series

Customer Review: "I started to landscape my garden a few years ago and quickly realised that it’s a skill to be learnt. I thought I could plant a few shrubs and bedding plants and I’d be fine but how wrong I was! There is so much you need to consider, such as Location, soil types and space. Not everything is covered in this book but I certainly wish I’d had the guide at the beginning of my gardening journey.

"The author writes at a level which is easily understood by the novice gardener. I’d have preferred more images but as a beginner's book, it will help to make a start on creating a small garden."

Best Beginners Gardening Book for Raised-Bed Gardens
Best Gardening Books for Beginners Raised Bed and Container Gardening: 9 Practical Steps For Turning Your Backyard or Balcony Into Your First Successful Vegetable Garden
Price: £12.99

Emma Andrews' book on raised-bed gardening helps you master your first gardening experience – even with limited space – by following these 9 easy steps. Featuring DIY designs, and expert advice on irrigation and fertilisation, this book is equipped with everything you need to know.

Pros: Step-by-steps, Useful glossary

Cons: Aimed at the American market

Customer Review: "As the title suggests, this book is a great place to begin understanding and beginning container and raised bed gardening. Emma not only has the experience to help the reader, but she has also undertaken a great deal of research to create this book so the reader can be assured Emma knows what she is talking about.

"Emma's background in this book reminds the reader where her passion comes from and what led to her writing the book. The chapters are well separated and clearly titled so you can jump straight to the area you need if you have read through but just want to check an area quickly. The glossary at the back is also useful if, like me, you are unsure of particular terminology. All in all, this is a fantastic book that I will refer to help my vegetable garden become and remain successful."

Best Beginners Garden Book for Vegetables
Best Gardening Books for Beginners Vegetable Gardening for Beginners: A Simple Guide to Growing Vegetables at Home
Price: £9.52

There's nothing quite like eating veggies that you've grown yourself. If you've got some space for a veggie patch, but have no clue how to start, this book by Jill McSheeby will guide rookies on how to build the ideal foundation, pick the perfect plans and nurture a budding garden. You'll be surprised how easy it can be to create a thriving vegetable garden.

Pros: Easy to understand

Cons: Very basic

Customer Review: "Informative and interesting. A really interesting little book, well written and nice illustrations too. A good introduction to vegetable growing, without the use of harsh chemicals or elaborate equipment."

Best Beginners Book for Indoor Plants

On sale

Best Gardening Books for Beginners How Not to Kill Your Houseplant: Survival Tips for the Horticulturally Challenged
Price: £6.92 (was £9.99)
Alternative retailers
Waterstones£9.99View offer
Debenhams UK£9.99View offer
Boots£10.00View offer

A bestseller, How Not to Kill Your Houseplant is a beginner's guide to plant parenting. Turn your home into a beautiful greenhouse of healthy, happy plants with easy advice and survival tips. Soon, you'll be able to identify what's in the pot. Further down the line, you'll be an expert in helping your plants flourish. This is the ultimate guide.

Have you got a loved one who is horticulturally challenged? This may be the best gardening book for them.

Pros: Easy to follow

Cons: Short

Customer Review: "I bought the book for a friend who has 'lost' many plants. Now all her plants are healthy and thriving!"

Best Beginners Garden Book for Flowers
Best Gardening Books for Beginners Flower Gardening for Beginners: A Guide to Growing and Maintaining a Cut-Flower Garden
Price: £12.69

Learn how to grow and arrange your own beautiful flowers with Amy Barene's guide. With the right guidance and a touch of practice, you can grow your way to a beautiful floral paradise. This book has all the information you'll need to plan, cultivate, tend, harvest, and arrange home-grown flowers. No experience is required.

Pros: Informative

Cons: Tailored for a US audience

Customer Review: "What an incredibly informative book. The book is packed with helpful tips and tricks to have a successful flower garden. One of my favourite parts of the book is the plant profiles. I love the access to quick information on the plants that I’m growing in my garden. This was an outstanding read and would highly recommend to anyone planning to grow flowers."

Best Children’s Gardening Book for Beginners

On sale

Best Gardening Books for Beginners Usborne's Gardening for Beginners

Rrp: £9.99

Price: £9.19
Alternative retailers
Waterstones£9.99View offer

Want to get your kiddies acquainted with the outdoors? Usborne has given us another gem. After all, gardening is a great way for children to discover how plants grow and to learn where lots of things come from. Here, they will learn how to grow their own fruit and vegetables. Plus, there is no garden required.

Pros: No garden required, Lots of hints, tips and ideas.

Cons: Best for an older child

Customer Review: "Absolutely love this book. Easy to understand and flows well. Simple diagrams and instructions to follow with a good selection of ideas for growing."

Best Beginners Book for Container Gardening
Container Gardening for Beginners: The Complete Guide to Growing Your Own Vegetables, Fruits, Herbs, and Flowers in Pots, Tubs, and Grow Bags
Price: £18.99

If you're wondering how to grow your own food if you don’t have a big garden, you can with this book. Discover how you can grow your own food by choosing pots for your plants to harvest, this book has all the information you need to start growing food and plants in containers.

Pros: Easy step-by-step help

Cons: Kindle only

Customer Review: "I absolutely loved this book! As a long-time dweller in top-floor apartments, I have to make the most of the space available and this book gave me loads of tips to do just that. It's incredibly comprehensive, well researched and referenced, leaving me in no doubt that I can act on the advice with confidence. From soil type to container type, this book is full of advice specific to the type of plants you want to grow. Flowers, herbs, fruit or vegetables, it's got you covered."

Best Beginner’s Book for Herbal Healing
Best Gardening Books for Beginners The Art of Herbal Healing: Herbalism for Beginners
Price: £15.24

Expert herbalist, Ava Green, will take you on a unique journey where you will learn how to find science-backed natural remedies for your ailments. You'll learn about herbs, herbal remedies, the practice of herbalism and more. If you're looking to grow healing herbs in your garden, there's even information to help you with that.

Pros: Easy to read, Informative

Cons: Needs more images

Customer Review: "A beautiful and useful reference book. I found tremendous value in the guidance and the formatting and illustrations are stunning. Can't fault it really! The author definitely knows her stuff. Do try the Nettle tea! Delicious and hopefully it'll help with my hay fever. Highly recommended!"

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