So where ELSE can you find accurate gardening information these days? Below, our suggestions for other, non-video sources.
On the Web
Google: Try using the search term site:.edu to find answers from universities. For example, for compost info you could put site:.edu compost in the Google box. Or add the school of your choice to find their specific info on the topic. (E.g., compost site:wmd.edu.)
To find actual research papers, use Google Scholar – because that’s what it serves up. Not for anyone looking for a quick answer.
Search Cooperative Extension Universities: Extension Search allows you to search hundreds of Cooperative Extension sites, which are land-grant universities charged with educating the public about gardening (among other things). Because not all Extension websites will give you the same answer on every topic, it’s best to visit more than one, and look for information that’s been published in the last five years or so.
More Recommended Websites and Facebook Groups
These websites are frequently recommended by one or more members of our Advisory Team.
- Missouri Botanic Garden Plantfinder.
- USDA Plant Database for correct/current scientific names and determining where a plant is native to.
- Purdue Virtual Plant and Pest Lab.
- Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.
- Plant trial evaluation info at the Chicago Botanic Garden and Mt. Cuba.
- For science-based answers, search past discussions on the Garden Professors Blog Facebook Group, THEN if you can’t find your answer, post a new question to the group. It had over 21,000 members worldwide as of 8/2018.
- For plant identification, the Plant ID Facebook Group can’t be beat. As of 8/2018 there were over 25,000 members, many with relevant degrees.
These books are recommended by one or more of our Team members as trusted sources.
- By Dr. Linda Chalker-Scott at Washington State U: How Plants Work: The Science Behind the Amazing Things Plants Do and The Informed Gardener.
- By Dr. Jeff Gillman, now the director of the Botanical Gardens at UNC Charlotte: The Truth About Garden Remedies: What Works, What Doesn’t, and Why, The Truth about Organic Gardening, and Decoding Gardening Advice.
- by Tracy diSabato-Aust, The Well-Tended Perennial Garden: Planting and Pruning Techniques is a long-time favorite source of info for growing perennials.
- By Ruth Stout, The No-Work Garden Book: Secrets of the Famous Year-Round Mulch Method.
- By Michael Dirr, Dirr’s Encyclopedia of Trees and Shrubs and others.
- Lee Reich’s books on pruning and growing fruit trees.
- Richard Harris’s books on Arboriculture.
- (Not a complete list – more coming…)
Extension University Publications (free or to purchase)