An Unconventional Garden Planning Book
By Amanda Thomsen
Storey Publishing, $16.95, 160 pages, 3 stars
Kiss My Aster is the quirkiest garden book I have ever read. It is obvious that Amanda Thomsen wanted to create a “different” type of garden planning book. This is a book full of color and line drawings, instead of pictures. The titles of the chapters are not just straightforward topics but instead run the gamut of “So you’re a lawn freak”, “Rocks for jocks” and “For those that want to be left alone”, just to name a few. Clearly, Thomsen has a streak of humor running through her green thumb. She identifies how to spot a phony landscape architect such as looking for fake mustaches, high heels and wearing cologne. This is a book for someone who does not necessarily need a step-by-step instruction guide with precise information, but instead a book to make you laugh, get your creative juices spurring and pick up a few tips here and there. Thomsen has made gardening kind of fun with garden bingo, a word find and a neighborhood scavenger hunt. Kiss My Aster is probably not the most direct route to planning and creating your garden, but you certainly will have fun perusing the information and creating a whimsical, creative plan. And as Thomsen suggests, you can always “hire a guy” if all else fails!
Reviewed by Seniye Groff