Watch Me Grow!

A Down-to-Earth Look at Growing Food in the City
K-Gr 3—Through lucid, straightforward text and colorful photos, this slim book pays tribute to the benefits of urban gardening. Primary-grade readers will learn how gardeners make a city—in this case Vancouver, Canada—"a better place to live." Gardens, large and small, take root in plots all over the city, from rooftops to windowsills. Oversize photos zoom in on honeybees, fresh fruits and vegetables, and a group of children enjoying blueberry pie. Gardening is lauded as a neighborly activity, a way of caring for ourselves in growing healthy food, and in making a place for wild animals. Young and old people raise animals such as chickens and donate produce to programs for the needy. In addition to growing and harvesting food, the city dwellers connect to nature: "we are thankful for the soil, sun and rain that give life to our plants and all living things." Imbued with eco-friendly values throughout, this rousing read should inspire youngsters to dig in and start planting.—Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA
Reflecting the rising interest in urban farming, this simple text explores the different ways and spaces people find to grow food in cities. Occasional boxed sidebars offer gentle encouragement: "A sunny windowsill is a great place to grow herbs." Well-chosen photos show children enjoying fresh produce in addition to pictures of community-, front-, and backyard gardens--and an eye-catching highrise rooftop beekeeper.

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