Best Gardening Books For Florida

I have a small collection of gardening books for Florida. A good gardening book will help you avoid some mistakes.

When it comes to living in Florida there are a few things that are different for us compared to other people in the united states. We have little to no seasons. It’s just hot and rainy for most of the year, except for those few days in January.

We have a tropical to subtropical climate here in Florida and this makes our planting times very different compared to most of the United States. This also gives us a large variety of plants to choose from!

University of Florida’s Vegetable Gardening Guide


The first “Book” I’m going to recommend is actually not even a book at all, it’s an information packet that you can get for free from your local extension office. Which you can find yours here.

It was made by the horticultural sciences department of the University of Florida and has a great deal of knowledge. Including a list of recommended varieties, when to plant them, and how to fertilize water and manage pests.

Florida Fruit And Vegetable Gardening

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The book that I use the most is “Florida fruit and vegetable gardening” by Robert Bowden.

Robert Bowden is the executive director of Leu Gardens in Orlando and has years of gardening experience. In his book he recommends a lot of extra varieties of veggies that the University of Florida doesn’t recommend in their packet.

Each veggie and fruit tree has their own in-depth section on care and requirements and common pests that you will see with them. He also talks about companion planting and how to attract beneficial bugs with easy to read charts throughout the book.


You’ll find this book useful if you live in an area that frowns upon front yard vegetable gardens but doesn’t mind loads of fruit trees in your front yard.

There is a large section on all of the fruit trees that you can grow in Florida.

Florida Vegetable Gardening For Beginners

This is a guide that I have written. I tried to share everything that I’ve learned in my short time growing.

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I’ve tried my best to include everything that I think you need to know to get you off on the right foot. I’ve thought to include Florida friendly varieties of each vegetable, planting calendars for each part of the state, site selection, soil building, and a few other things.

If you are new to gardening or are looking for a good free starting point, check out that post. I really hope it helps you.

Vegetable Gardening In Florida

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This book was written by James M. Stephens who is a professor at the University of Florida. He is also in charge of education programs with the extension office for us home gardeners and is actually the founder of the master gardener program in Florida.

He shows off his knowledge in this easy to read book packed with tons of great pictures and examples.


That’s one of the reasons why I like this book so much, the pictures. There are so many detailed pictures of pests and garden examples.

James also writes in a way that’s easy to read and makes gardening seem so simple.

Week-by-week vegetable gardener’s handbook

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Written by a father-daughter combo, Ron and Jennifer Kujawski. They both have a long history of growing vegetables and educating people about them. They garden a “tiny” 6,000 square foot plot (kidding about the tiny part obviously).

This book was developed to be a working journal more so than a book you would go to for knowledge. Although it has plenty of knowledge in it too.

This book isn’t made specifically for Florida but they have made it so that you can adapt it to any climate.


It works by basing your timing on the date of last frost. It walks you through ways to prepare your garden before you plant and things to look for along your growing journey.

The vegetable gardener’s guide to permaculture


This is one of my favorites(Check price). It’s not specifically about Florida either but it gives you so much information about how ecosystems naturally grow and it helps you build your garden in that way.

It has great pictures and lays things out in an easy to understand way.

It goes into how certain types of plants work together and how it’s beneficial to grow a bunch of different types of plants together. If you know anything about permaculture than you know that it’s all about getting the most return for the least effort. Which I’m definitely a fan of.

My favorite part of this book was learning about garden design.


Learning how to think about designing an ecosystem. It’s not just beans, tomatoes and carrots. This book opened up my mind to thinking of garden design in layers, starting with the soil and working your way up, like how a jungle does.

Create Your Own Florida Food Forest

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If you’ve never heard of David the good, you should head over to his site, the survival gardener. He’s got a very unique style that I really enjoy.

He has a quirky style of writing with whitty humor sprinkled in to his writing. All jokes aside, he is very knowledgeable when it comes to plants how dealing with Florida’s climate.

He has successfully built food forests in all parts of the state from north to south Florida.

This is one of the best gardening books for Florida if you are interested in building food forests.

The good man simply breaks down how to look at the jumbled mess that is a natural forest. He then goes on to give a list of edible plants that fit into each of these categories. David also tells you which plants do good in north and central Florida and which ones do good in South Florida.

Gardening Books For Florida

  • University of Florida’s Vegetable Gardening Guide
  • Florida Fruit And Vegetable Gardening – Robert Bowden
  • Vegetable Gardening In Florida – James M. Stephens
  • Week-by-week vegetable gardener’s handbook
  • The vegetable gardener’s guide to permaculture
  • Create Your Own Florida Food Forest – David The Good

I hope that this is an ever growing list. These are some of the best gardening books for Florida that I have come accros. If you have some suggestions please email me at and I will add it to the list!


Unluckily for plants, I really enjoy growing them. I've grown a few plants over the years and I've killed some too, more than I would like to admit. I just want to share my experience and hope that it helps others.

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