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It's time to plan your garden! Spring is just around the corner!

One of my New Year's traditions is to go out on January 1 and explore under the leaves or snow to see what is sprouting! In some homes in my past, it was early bulbs -- here in California it's as likely to be mushrooms, grass or azalea buds!

But any way you find it in YOUR neck of the woods, the new year is the time to dream about your spring gardening designs.

This year, how about going green(er) with your gardening?

Herb Garden

Here's a book that can help you make sense out of what's green and what's not so green. The "Green Gardener's Guide" Simple, Significant Actions to Protect & Preserve Our Planet, is by Joe Lamp'l, and published by the highly respected Cool Springs Press that has the mission of "Growing Successful Gardeners". These 10 green practices can make a significant impact on your local community's air quality, water sustainability, and produce excellent crops at the same time.

The Ten Most Significant Actions for Creating an Eco-friendly Garden

  1. Garden to reduce water usage.
  2. Garden to reduce pollution of soil and water.
  3. Keep plants healthy to reduce the need for pesticides and chemicals.
  4. Practice Integrated Pest Management.
  5. If using chemicals, apply them safely, responsibly, and effectively.
  6. Landscape to reduce soil erosion and runoff.
  7. Garden to reduce waste through recycling and composting.
  8. Garden to reduce nonrenewable energy consumption and protect air quality.
  9. Landscape to protect biodiversity and ecosystems.
  10. Plant the seeds of change beyond the boundaries of our gardens.

People know why they need to respect the environment when gardening. This is the one of the first books that tells them how to make it happen.

The Green Gardener's Guide' offers a straightforward approach to creating a more sustainable garden—be that a front lawn or a vegetable row. We take people step by step and show them how simple green gardening can be.

Written by Joe Lamp'l the host of GardenSMART on PBS, Fresh from the Garden on the DIY Network and is a sought-after speaker around the country. He is a Master Gardener, Certified Landscape Professional and the founder of The joe gardener Company.

Green Gardener's Guide provides hundreds of tips on conserving resources, promoting healthy and safe plant growth, and preventing unnecessary damage to the earth. Lamp'l offers easy-to-follow steps that help readers become more environmentally conscious and lessen their environmental footprint.